Monday, April 05, 2010

Greetings from FSI

I am at the Foreign Service Institute for the next three days studying New and Social Media. Yes really.

Stop snickering. It is the advanced course.

ON EDIT: A common topic among bloggers is the Department policy about blogging, and I have discussed previously how the Department is a bit schitzophrenic on the subject.

In this class, it seems that the shift I expected is becoming more of a reality, as the Department establishes tools such as the Social Media Hub. Among the tools you will find there is a link for State Department Social Media Links. Included in those links are links for State Department Blogs (and there are a lot of them!) and State Department Facebook sites. The blog link in particular illustrates the schitzophrenia, mentioning on the one hand that the Department tries to control some blog content and while also providing links to a number of unofficial blogs (including this one).

And perhaps a sign of things to come, one of the designers of this course, and our first speaker of the day, was well-known blogger John Matel of World Wide Matel.


Donna said...

I hope you're mentioning your own blog a lot in the hopes of driving traffic here. Kinda fun to be anonymous - you can promote yourself, and noone will know.

Seriously, let us know what you learn. I always heard the extent of teaching was "don't do it." Hope that isn't still true.

melissa v said...

I am not snickering at all. Seriously - I did Internet marketing consulting for three years in San Diego, and my current company uses my experience with online social networking to help our (government) clients use these venues the right way.

There are plenty of people and companies out there that throw up a Facebook fan page and declare that they 'do social media' even if their incomplete efforts produce zero results. Frankly, I'm glad to hear that State is taking the time to make sure everyone has an understanding of social media and what it can and cannot do.

However, if your instructor calls him or herself a 'guru' or any related synonym...well, you might be in trouble.

fsowannabe said...

I imagine the schizophrenia, in addition to the valid concern about keeping confidential information confidential, is also a result of bureaucratic generational gaps. Enjoy!

Anonymous said...

In the many years that I have been following these FS blogs, not one has mentioned or blogged about confidential info. The Eikenberry cables were leaked by real people not bloggers, and State is worried about bloggers?! Its a generation and cultural gaps. The bloggers might eventually win but that would take some time ... by then, the worry would no longer be blogs but something else. Email, then, blogs, now, guess what is in the future?