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美驻饿大使玩转“数字外交”

2014-01-15    来源:chinadaily    【      美国外教 在线口语培训

U.S. ambassador in Moscow uses social media to bypass official line

据美国《华盛顿邮报》报道,在俄罗斯这样一个经常贬损美国、没有耐心接受西方价值观念,同时严格管控传媒的国家,美国大使通常很难向普罗大众传递他想传达的信息。然而,现任美国驻俄大使迈克尔•麦克福尔却另辟蹊径,借助社交媒体、玩转“数字外交”。

For Ambassador Michael McFaul, the unfiltered communication offered by social media means he can tweet U.S. policy, blog it and post it on Facebook, an alternative to the mostly hostile traditional media here.

While Russian Internet use is widespread, the majority of people still get their news from television, so McFaul is unlikely to win the nation’s hearts and minds tweet by tweet. But his use of social media gets him buzz — and a direct line to a new audience.

McFaul tweets, he said in an interview, because Hillary Rodham Clinton, the former U.S. secretary of state who sent him to Moscow two years ago, told him to.

“Her message was that our diplomacy goes beyond meeting with our counterparts in the Ministry of Foreign Affairs,” he said.

McFaul’s reception when he arrived here in January 2012 helped reinforce his boss’s orders. Officially directed anti-Americanismwas on the rise, and television crews, taking cues from the Kremlin, hounded McFaul. They pounced on him when he met with human rights activists. He was accused of giving the activists orders and stirring up revolution.

Time to power up the computer.


Many public officials tweet, but McFaul has been noticed for his willingness to answer questions and get into some give-and-take on Twitter. A few days ago, a tweeter asked if there would ever be war between Russia and the United States. “Never,” he wrote in Russian. That touched off a longer exchange about whether the two countries threatened each other. McFaul argued they faced common threats. Pressed, he tweeted, “al-Qaeda.”

Months after his arrival, a paper prepared for the Center for New Media and Society at the New Economic School in Moscow declared that McFaul had taken digital diplomacy much further than other diplomats. Sam Greene, then a senior research fellow at the center, also wrote that McFaul was already among Russia’s 10 most influential bloggers, as evaluated by numbers of mentions by other bloggers and readership.

The December issue of State, the magazine published by the U.S. State Department, and the January-February issue of the Foreign Service Journal ran admiring this-is-how-you-do-it articles about his use of social media.

He tries to vary the discourse, following up a tweet about Secretary of State John F. Kerry discussing Iran or a link to a strong U.S. statement on human rights in Russia with something personal about himself or his family.

When he and his wife celebrated the new year by watching a Bolshoi Ballet performance of “The Nutcracker,” he tweeted photos and posted them on Facebook, commenting on the wealth of Russian culture. A year and a half ago, a photo of him in Red Square with family members visiting from Montana got a thousand likes.

In a series of 15 or more tart tweets, the Foreign Ministry called itself shocked by remarks McFaul had made to students at the Higher School of Economics, describing him as distorting the U.S.-Russian relationship and spreading falsehoods.

McFaul defended himself; his standard PowerPoint presentation had emphasized positive results, he said. Carl Bildt, the Swedish foreign minister who was watching in cyberspace, called it the first Twitter war.

“I see that Russia MFA has launched a twitter-war against US Ambassador @McFaul,” tweeted Bildt, who has 251,600 followers. “That’s the new world — followers instead of nukes. Better.”(ChinaDaily)

相关内容

新时代尝试新外交

“数字外交”的想法从何而来?麦克福尔说,这受到美国前国务卿希拉里•克林顿的启发,“两年前,她派我来莫斯科。当时,她告诉我,外交的含义远远大于在外交部会见他国大使”。

2012年1月,麦克福尔上任,他在俄罗斯的所闻所感加深了他对希拉里赠言的理解。当时,俄罗斯反美情绪高涨,电视里、报纸上充斥反美言论。作为新任美国驻俄大使,麦克福尔的日子可不好过。随后,他顶着舆论压力与俄人权活动人士会面,更是成为媒体炮轰的对象,他被指暗中下令、企图挑起冲突。

经过一番深思熟虑,麦克福尔认为是时候转战“数字战场”了。

在麦克福尔看来,虽然俄罗斯传统媒体对美国不甚友好,但社交媒体可提供未经过滤的信息沟通,这意味着他可以在微博上、在博客上传播美国政策。尽管单纯依靠发微博,麦克福尔无法赢得俄民众的认同,不过他也志不在此,他的目的是与一个新的群体进行直接沟通。

“有来有往”成其卖点

政府官员开微博并不少见,但麦克福尔却以和网民“有来有往”而与他人区分开来。几天前,一名网友在微博上向麦克福尔发问:“美俄会爆发战争吗?”“不会!”麦克福尔用俄语干净利落地回答。

随后,此次问答在微博上引发一场有关美俄是否互为威胁的大讨论,麦克福尔也参与其中。“基地组织”,他在对话框里写下四个字,然后点击发送,指出这是美俄面临的共同敌人。

麦克福尔在“数字外交”领域作出的尝试和努力得到外界认可。麦克福尔赴俄任职数月后,莫斯科一家学术机构刊文称,相较于同行,他把“数字外交”推行得更为深入。该机构高级研究员萨姆•葛林更把麦克福尔列入俄罗斯十大最具影响力博主榜单,称其博文的阅读人数和影响力不容小觑。

公私兼顾获得成功

而在美国国内,政府和媒体也在尝试解读麦克福尔使用社交媒体的成功之处。美国国务院发行的《国家》杂志2013年12月刊,以及美国《外交杂志》1、2月刊都发表文章,向读者介绍这位学者出身的美国驻俄大使如何进行“数字外交”。

“他会声援美国政府,但也会在社交媒体上稍稍展示一下私人生活。”《华盛顿邮报》说。例如,麦克福尔把他和妻子在莫斯科大剧院观看芭蕾舞表演的照片放上“脸谱网”(Facebook),同时附文赞叹俄罗斯文化博大精深。一年半前,他带家人参观莫斯科红场的照片还收获了一千个“赞”。

除了“赞”,麦克福尔在微博上还遭遇过怒斥。此前,俄罗斯外交部曾连发至少15条微博,斥责麦克福尔在俄国立高等经济大学做演讲时措辞不专业,指其扭曲美俄关系、散播谎言。麦克福尔随即“回击”,说自己所做的PPT演示合乎标准,听众反响热烈。

当时,瑞典外交部长卡尔•比尔特在推特(Twitter)上围观这场口舌论战,并将其称为史上第一场“推特战争”。“我看到,俄罗斯外交部对美国驻俄大使发动了一场推特战争,”拥有超过25万粉丝的比尔特在微博上写道,“这是一个新的时代,粉丝代替了核弹,现在变得更好了。”



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