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The Federal Foreign Office online – are you following us yet?

03.01.2014 - Article

The Foreign Office has a presence worldwide through just under 230 missions abroad. The headquarters in Berlin and ever more embassies and consulates also have a home in the digital world.

The Federal Foreign Office has a presence worldwide through just under 230 missions abroad, but this is not all – nowadays the Federal Foreign Office in Berlin and ever more embassies and consulates also have a home in the digital world. More than 70 missions abroad have opened a virtual embassy on Facebook whilst around 25 are already active on Twitter. In addition to this, others have accounts on the video platform Youtube, as well as much more.

Important contact points – including on Web 2.0

The Federal Foreign Office in conversation online
The Federal Foreign Office in conversation online© AA

There are regional differences. As Tunisians are often active on social networking sites, our Embassy provides them with a wide range of options both on Twitter and Facebook. In turn, in China our missions abroad are in close contact with the public via two microblogs. The German Embassy in Beijing already has 90,000 followers on its “Weibo” site, the same number again follow the Embassy on “QQ”.

Embassies and consulates remain an important point of contact – in the real world just as much as online. Informing the public about the work of the Federal Foreign Office and the missions abroad is the focus of their presence on social media, as is dialogue with users. One reason for its success is the variety of languages used. For example, the Federal Foreign Office runs one Twitter account in German and another in English, and missions abroad often run their social media presence in the local language.

Changing perspectives

Around 25 missions are already on Twitter – this is the FFO’s English twitter account.
Around 25 missions are already on Twitter – this is the FFO’s English twitter account.© AA

Yet messages posted on Twitter and co. can also be of interest to people in Germany – alongside information about Germany, they offer a lively portrayal of everyday life in the host country.

The Federal Foreign Office’s Facebook page made this the topic of its series “changing perspectives”. Approximately once a month a mission abroad introduces itself and sends a photo enabling users to “look out of the window”, for example at the capital city from within the embassy.

What is currently on offer?

The #Freitagsfrage on Facebook – what is this seal?
The #Freitagsfrage on Facebook – what is this seal?© AA

The latest #Freitagsfrage (“Fridayquestion”) appears on the Federal Foreign Office Facebook page today. This time it is: what is this seal? For more information on this and for the answer, click here:

Federal Foreign Office on Facebook

As for changing perspectives, on Twitter our colleagues in New York have posted a snapshot of their snowy city: @GermanyUN

If you would like to learn more about a German-Tunisian civil defence project then click here for information provided by the German Embassy in Tunisia:Facebook page of the Embassy in tunis.

Another recommendation – on the Federal Foreign Office’s Youtube channel you will find a short film on the Treaty Archives of the Federal Foreign Office, entitled

„seal containers and velvet covers“.

And click here to read today’s tweets on Europe and South Sudan posted on the Federal Foreign Office’s English Twitter account

@GermanyDiplo

So in short, you can follow us no matter where you are!

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