April 20th, 2009
06:33 PM ET
14 years ago

State Dept. seeks to boost Twitter, other new media in Iraq

[cnn-photo-caption image= http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2009/images/04/20/art.getty.h.clinton.jpg caption="The Iraqi government could be tweeting soon, courtesy of Hillary Clinton."]WASHINGTON (CNN) - The Iraqi government could be tweeting soon, courtesy of Hillary Clinton.

The State Department said Monday it is sending a team of technology executives to help the Iraqi government and other groups expand the country's emerging new media industry.

The nine-member delegation, which includes CEOs and other officials from such technology giants as AT&T, Google, Twitter and YouTube, will meet with Iraqi government and education officials, Iraqi technology companies and civil society groups.

A statement issued by the State Department said the team will "provide conceptual input as well as ideas on how new technologies can be used to build local capacity, foster greater transparency and accountability, build upon anti-corruption efforts, promote critical thinking in the classroom, scale-up civil society, and further empower local entities and individuals by providing the tools for network building."

"As Iraqis think about how to integrate new technology as a tool for smart power, we view this as an opportunity to invite the American technology industry to be part of this creative genesis," the State Department statement said.

The delegation is the latest State Department effort to use new media and social networking tools to further its diplomatic goals. Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton is already blogging on the State Department's Web site and has an "ask the secretary" initiative in which anyone around the world can communicate with her directly.

Last week in the Dominican Republic, Clinton held a digital town hall to talk about issues related to Latin America.

Filed under: Hillary Clinton • Iraq • Social Networking • State Department
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