Twitter is redefining the way we communicate—and that includes our world leaders: 15 of the G20 governments use it. But the question is who follows who, who doesn’t follow who, and do world leaders even realize the diplomatic significance of their tweets and Twitter friendships?
Barack Obama was the first to use the micro-blogging service to communicate with his electorate in 2008. His Twitter account @BarackObama, is now the most followed of all world-leader accounts, with 7.4 million followers (only @LadyGaga, @JustinBieber and @BritneySpears have more!) Twenty-eight different world leaders follow @BarackObama, yet notably the @WhiteHouse—the US government’s official Twitter account—doesn’t. Is this because the White House appreciates that the @BarackObama account was set up by Obama for America committee with one sole purpose in mind—to win him the US presidency?
Like it or lump it, Twitter has become a key tool in political communication and heads of states and government need to learn how to use it—fast.