Mar1020095:45 pm

International Higher Education Consulting blog

David Comp left an insightful comment on my previous post on the International Blogger job, which reminded me that I wanted to write on David and his two blogs:

International Higher Education Consulting blog: David writes here, providing “timely news and informational pieces that are of interest to both the international education and public diplomacy communities. From time to time, International Higher Education Consulting Blog will post thought provoking pieces to challenge readers and to encourage comments and professional dialogue.”

International Education Blogs and News: This is a new project for David, just launched on February 23—it’s essentially a compilation of feeds from a variety of blogs covering international education (including Working World). An interesting and efficient way to see what’s being said out there on the topic of international education.

Many thanks to David for his work on both of these projects (which I discovered through my work at the Alliance and now check regularly for news and updates—I recommend you check them out), as well as for his support of Working World.

Now, after the jump, David’s comment on social networking as a skill—he’s with me, that Facebook by itself isn’t a skill, but deep experience with “strategizing and then implementing an effective communication plan/objective” within a social networking framework certainly can be a skill:

I also read this on MountainRunner this morning and was very interested in what Matt Armstrong had to say. I would argue (in opposition to those who commented on your previous post) that social networking can be a “skill” but it depends on one’s experience and/or knowledge of it. Having 1000+ contacts on Linkedin, knowing how to post on someone’s wall in Facebook or frequently tweeting about the upcoming U2 tour are not the “skills” places like Orbitus or governments are looking for when they want someone with social media or blogging skills. What Orbitus is looking for is someone who understands how “networks” work and how to use the various social media tools available (blogging, Twitter, second life, You Tube and to a certain extent on Facebook) to effectively communicate a specific message.

In the past four months or so we have seen interesting developments in the use of various social media tools that governments are embracing (as a way to effectively communicate certain messages). In December 2008, then Undersecretary of State for Public Diplomacy James Glassman highlighted the new social media efforts used by the U.S. Department of State in a talk entitled “Public Diplomacy 2.0” where he highlighted their new website ExchangesConnect, DIPNOTE blog, Facebook page and YouTube channel. In January 2009 the Israeli New York Consulate ( ) held a Twitter press conference at the start of the Israeli-Gaza conflict (I just checked and the Israeli Consulate currently has 5,288 followers on Twitter). See my blog post (which provides links to interesting articles) at Another great example of effectively using various social networking tools to one’s advantage was the Presidential campaign of Barack Obama. He embraced social networks and understood the power these tools had to convey his message to voters. A perfect example was his use of text messaging to announce that Joe Biden would be his running mate. The moment President Obama took office (at 12:00pm and not when he took the Oath of Office) the White House webpage was transformed into a well oiled machine and it, along with the White House blog, have been communicating his message to the U.S. public and the world.

To be sure, the U.S. Department of State, the Israeli Consulate, the White House and even Orbitus want to have as many friends, followers, subscribers, connections, fans, or visitors as possible to their various social networks so they can reach the greatest audience with their message. However, they all want people working on their various social network projects who have the “skills” necessary to strategize and then implement an effective communication plan/objective.

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