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Digital Diplomacy 2.0? A Cross-national Comparison of Public Engagement in Facebook and Twitter

Digital Diplomacy 2.0? A Cross-national Comparison of Public Engagement in Facebook and Twitter Social media holds the potential to foster dialogue between nations and foreign populations. Yet only a few studies to date have investigated the manner in which digital diplomacy is practised by foreign ministries. Using Kent and Taylor’s framework for dialogic communication, this article explores the extent to which dialogic communication is adopted by foreign ministries in terms of content, media channels and public engagement. The results of a six-week analysis of content published on Twitter and Facebook by eleven foreign ministries show that engagement and dialogic communication are rare. When engagement does occur, it is quarantined to specific issues. Social media content published by foreign ministries represents a continuous supply of press releases targeting foreign, rather than domestic, populations. A cross-national comparison revealed no discernible differences in the adoption of dialogic principles. Results therefore indicate that foreign ministries still fail to realize the potential of digital diplomacy to foster dialogue. http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png The Hague Journal of Diplomacy Brill

Digital Diplomacy 2.0? A Cross-national Comparison of Public Engagement in Facebook and Twitter

The Hague Journal of Diplomacy , Volume 10 (4): 331 – Oct 23, 2015

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Publisher
Brill
Copyright
© Koninklijke Brill NV, Leiden, The Netherlands
ISSN
1871-1901
eISSN
1871-191X
DOI
10.1163/1871191X-12341318
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

Social media holds the potential to foster dialogue between nations and foreign populations. Yet only a few studies to date have investigated the manner in which digital diplomacy is practised by foreign ministries. Using Kent and Taylor’s framework for dialogic communication, this article explores the extent to which dialogic communication is adopted by foreign ministries in terms of content, media channels and public engagement. The results of a six-week analysis of content published on Twitter and Facebook by eleven foreign ministries show that engagement and dialogic communication are rare. When engagement does occur, it is quarantined to specific issues. Social media content published by foreign ministries represents a continuous supply of press releases targeting foreign, rather than domestic, populations. A cross-national comparison revealed no discernible differences in the adoption of dialogic principles. Results therefore indicate that foreign ministries still fail to realize the potential of digital diplomacy to foster dialogue.

Journal

The Hague Journal of DiplomacyBrill

Published: Oct 23, 2015

Keywords: digital diplomacy; public diplomacy; dialogic communication; public engagement; social networking sites; web 2.0

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