Welcome to Dipnote

Posted by Sean McCormack
September 25, 2007
Sean McCormack During Morning Press Gaggle

Welcome to the State Department's first-ever blog, Dipnote. As a communicator for the Department, I have the opportunity to do my fair share of talking on a daily basis. With the launch of Dipnote, we are hoping to start a dialogue with the public. More than ever, world events affect our daily lives--what we see and hear, what we do, and how we work. I hope Dipnote will provide you with a window into the work of the people responsible for our foreign policy, and will give you a chance to be active participants in a community focused on some of the great issues of our world today.

With Dipnote we are going to take you behind the scenes at the State Department and bring you closer to the personalities of the Department. We are going to try and break through some of the jargon and talk about how we operate around the world.

We invite you to participate in this community, and I am looking forward to stepping away from my podium every now and then into the blogosphere. Let the conversation begin.

PS - We're new at this. It looks like we broke our own rule and used State jargon in our blog title. "Dipnote" refers to a diplomatic note. It is one of the many ways in which governments formally communicate with each other.

The dictionary definition of a diplomatic note is: "A formal communication between an ambassador and a minister (usually the foreign minister) of this host government or another ambassador."

Comments

Comments

GenXer
|
California, USA
September 25, 2007

GenXer from California writes:
Sean: It appears that I am the first commentator on your first entry. I am very interested in how the State Dept. works internally as well as in their communications with foreign governments.
As the Governator has said..."I'll be back"

Your fellow American

Robert
|
Wisconsin, USA
September 25, 2007

Robert from Wisconsin writes:
I am a high school teacher of world affairs and model UN activities. This is great and I will tell my students about it. I hope you bring in questions and activities that would appeal to young people. After all, they are your future.

John
|
Oregon, USA
September 25, 2007

John from Oregon writes:
Sean, It's great to see some extra sunlight coming into the State Departments long dark corridors with the launch of the new blog today. My hope is that this tried and tested "disinfectant" can help restore some of the luster to the reputation of the U.S.A. here at home and among our friends throughout the world.

Christina N.
|
California, USA
September 26, 2007

Christina in California writes:
Great idea! Welcome to blogging. I'm an ESL teacher, and I plan to visit this site often. I'll be looking for information I can share with my students and readers of my civics blog.

Justin T.
|
District Of Columbia, USA
September 26, 2007

Justin in Washington, DC writes:
Sean, welcome to the blogosphere. I look forward to reading what you and your colleagues write about in the future.

Wes T.
|
Michigan, USA
September 26, 2007

Wes in Michigan writes:
I'm excited about how the State Department is a new media trendsetter with the Library of Congress. I'm anxious to follow your blog and learn more about your important department.

Brent
|
California, USA
September 26, 2007

Brent in California writes:
Transparency rules. Thanks for doing this

Joe K.
September 26, 2007

Joe writes:
We'll see if this is gonna be another partisan hack job.

Cynthia
|
California, USA
September 26, 2007

Cynthia in California writes:
This new blog seems to be an effort at transparency, but given the U.S. State Department's warlike actions, I'm skeptical that this will actually encourage dialogue. I'm curious to know if this will be a two-way conversation; whether postings will reach people in positions of authority at the State Department, in other words, if the public's opinions and concerns will be considered and if they will have any influence; if the Bush Administration's viewpoint will be promoted here to the exclusion of independent and humane thinking, and to the detriment of our country's standing in the world; and whether this blog is simply a PR tool for the Administration disguised as a dialogue. I'm not optimistic for a real exchange of ideas, but I hope I'm wrong. Thanks for reading.

Conrad
|
District Of Columbia, USA
September 26, 2007

Conrad in Washington, DC writes:
Hi Sean,
Great idea, can't wait to see how this develops. Lots of interested people will be reading!

Alex R.
|
Pennsylvania, USA
September 26, 2007

Alex in Pennsylvania writes:
I am a recently naturalized citizen, and happy to see steps towards all aspects of the federal system using technology to enable more transparency and accountability -- cornerstones of any legitimate government -- in our democracy.

With respect to transparency and accountability, I would personally look forward to reading about how the State Department plans to better manage the increasing use of the private sector in implementing foreign policy (in the forms of Halliburton, Blackwater and other service contractors) -- along with the excesses, abuses, needless violence and other problems which appear to be so prevalent, at this time.

I do worry about our great country being a bad actor around the world. I do also hope that you will see this blog as one among many opportunities to communicate your critical role in rebuilding the respect and international goodwill we once had. Thanks for reading.

Marcus
|
New York, USA
September 26, 2007

Marcus in New York writes:
What an enlightened project - I hope it inspires other Federal departments to use the internet to communicate more directly to the public.

Vanna
|
Missouri, USA
September 26, 2007

Vanna in Missouri writes:
Lose the site name. Dipnote sounds dopey. But then again, "Dipblog" sounds like something to eat.

Rick
|
North Dakota, USA
September 26, 2007

Rick in North Dakota writes:
Just a suggestion, could you add RSS feeds for those of us with feed readers?

Thanks!

Rick: The RSS feed is now available. Look at the "Subscribe" heading near the bottom of the right column on the homepage.

Robin
|
Romania
September 26, 2007

Robin in Romania writes:
I believe this is a very good idea and I can only hope that ideas belonging to outsiders are being considered properly.

João M.
|
Portugal
September 26, 2007

Moura in Portugal writes:
I'm a undergraduate student at a portuguese university. Both U.S. and U.K. started today their State Departments blogs. It seems to be interesting. Maybe they can talk about IRAQ and Afghanistan, or...what can we do to dominate all oil well?...
I know that this comment its a litle bit absurd and i'm writing on wrong place...but...

Michael
|
California, USA
September 26, 2007

Michael in California writes:
echo - this is a very good idea!

David
|
Connecticut, USA
September 27, 2007

David in Connecticut writes:
I'm really afraid to express my feelings here since a recent State Department Ambassador's career came to an abrupt halt for muttering the truth. Now which amendment was it that guaranteed free speech?

jim
|
New York, USA
September 27, 2007

Jim in New York writes:
Good Job!

solemnity
|
China
September 27, 2007

Solemnity in China writes:
Senior U.S. officials look at how to write blog.

Nicole
|
District Of Columbia, USA
September 27, 2007

Nicole in Washington, DC writes:
I'm looking for a window into your world, something beyond what I read in the newspaper. Let us in, please!

Sean M.
|
District Of Columbia, USA
September 27, 2007

Sean McCormack from the U.S. State Department writes:
I appreciate your comments and encourage you to keep them coming. How the blog develops over time and how useful it becomes as a tool for dialogue will depend in part on you, the readers. We will do our part in opening that window, and I would encourage you to give us feedback on which issues and areas you want to explore. Your comments, ideas, and feedback will also help me generate participation by State Department employees as they start to become comfortable with a new means of conversing with the public. I am pleased thus far with the response internally to our new venture, but there's more work to be done so that blogging becomes part of daily State Department life.

jzdjg
|
China
September 27, 2007

jzdjg from China writes:
Great! I think, the u.s. should be better!

jzdjg
September 27, 2007

jzdjg from China writes:
we think it is a good idea!

Murat
|
Turkey
September 27, 2007

Murat from Turkey writes:
A brilliant idea and a very good job.

Sean
|
California, USA
September 27, 2007

Sean in California writes:
I'm really looking forward to how this develops. It is a great idea and really makes the government feel accessible on a daily basis. I wish you the best!

Laura
|
Uruguay
September 27, 2007

Laura in Uraguay writes:
Realmente una gran idea y esperamos que obtengan optimos resultados. Material interesante de consulta. Mis felicitaciones.

Mihai
|
Romania
September 27, 2007

Mihai in Romania writes:
Who should be allowed to possess the nuclear weapon? Technology means weapons, don't tell us stories friends from Iran and North Korea. ...We are one more drink away from a Russian nuclear disaster. It's enough stress for us, please ...remember Chernobyl!

Fernando
|
Arizona, USA
September 27, 2007

Fernando in Arizona writes:
I appreciate the attempt to make government a little more transparent, especially the government's interaction with the rest of the world. On a personal note, I have always been interested in the role of Diplomatic Courier. If you could get a Courier to volunteer to post to this blog, on their roles, that'd be great. Thanks and Good Job!

Allison
|
Missouri, USA
September 27, 2007

Allison in Missouri writes:
I was intrigued at the idea of open forums between the State department and the American public. Unfortunately, the site has barely been up and the America-Bashing has begun by the international community. It's a shame, I was really looking forward to this blog - Now it's just another tool for the lunatics of the world to unite against us. The AP reported this website as being a forum for Americans, obviously they were misinformed. God Bless America.

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