Twiplomacy by Indonesian Ambassadors and Embassies
Mohamad Rendy Irawan Ifran, Ella Prihatini
Last modified: 2022-05-29
Twitter has been strategically used by many countries in the world as part of their digital diplomacy. The term for the utilization of Twitter for diplomacy is known as Twiplomacy. The current pandemic, in particular, highlights the pivotal role that Twiplomacy has to offer. Aside from free to use, this approach is fast in terms of disseminating information that can improve a country’s international image. It also serves as an excellent tool to ensure protection for diaspora communities worldwide by providing updates to those in need of support. The Indonesian government is fully aware of these functions, hence almost all embassies and ambassadors are now on Twitter to push forward Indonesia’s international agendas. Our paper introduces a dataset which consists of key information from all Twitter handles owned by ambassadors and embassies as of 12 March 2021. The descriptive analysis offers a novel empirical exploration of how Indonesian Twiplomacy fares during pandemic times. Our data suggests that embassies have a substantial role in Twiplomacy and every effort to improve their digital contribution should be highly encouraged. As for digital reach, we found that the total number of embassies’ Twitter followers is less than a quarter of those of ambassadors. Yet, Indonesian embassies tweeted three times more than the ambassadors. We also find that embassies with longer existence in the Twitterverse have more followers, hence greater digital contribution to Indonesia's overall Twiplomacy performance.
Digital Diplomacy; Twiplomacy; Indonesia; Ambassadors; Embassies
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