U.S. State Department

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U.S. public diplomacy's chief departs at key moment

Sunday, July 30th 2017

Bruce Wharton, the first Under Secretary for Public Diplomacy from the ranks of the career Foreign Service, has retired.  Wharton has provided stellar leadership and set a fine example for public diplomacy employees since his appointment last December.  No successor has been announced.

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Joe B. Johnson

Board member

 

Joe B. Johnson consults on government communication and technology after a career in the United States Foreign Service.  He is an instructor for the National Foreign Affairs Training Center, where he teaches strategic planning for public diplomacy.

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Author: Joe Johnson

PLEASE, NO MORE KUDZU!

Sunday, March 20th 2016

Earlier this week, Republican Senator Rob Portman and Democratic Senator Chris Murphy introduced a bill, the Countering Information Warfare Act of 2016, which would create a new “center” to produce and disseminate “fact-based narratives and analysis to counter propaganda and disinformation directed at United States allies and partners.”

Wow, what a great idea! How come nobody ever thought of it before?

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Martha Bayles writes and lectures frequently about the arts, music, media, and public diplomacy. Her latest book, Through a Screen Darkly: Popular Culture, Public Diplomacy, and America’s Image Abroad (Yale 2014) was described by American Diplomacy as “the freshest and most original treatment of U.S. Public Diplomacy in many years.”

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Author: Martha Bayles

How to Save the Voice of America

Friday, May 15th 2015

As an enterprise that includes both journalism and public diplomacy – two disciplines that have lately been undergoing seismic changes – the U.S. Broadcasting Board of Governors (BBG), the bipartisan group of presidential appointees who oversee America’s stable of international broadcasters, is facing growing demands that it, too, needs to make some major changes.

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David S. Jackson

David Jackson is a veteran journalist and former U.S. government official with extensive multimedia communications experience in domestic and international markets.

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Author: David S Jackson

What to Do About the Russian Troll in Your Computer

Friday, April 24th 2015

Remember trolls? They used to be mythical creatures from children’s stories who lurked in caves or under bridges.

Not any more. Today’s trolls now lurk online, where they attack Western values, defend Vladimir Putin, and do whatever they can to plant nutty conspiracy theories and disrupt rational discussions on news and opinion websites.

They’re not hard to find. Just look in your computer.

Internet “trolls” are not a new phenomenon, but the pro-Russian kind have been attracting increased attention lately thanks to reports from The Guardian and Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty, among others, which have pulled the curtains back on where the trolls work (many in St. Petersburg, Russia), what they do, and how they’re paid (by quantity, not quality).

U.S. public diplomacy practitioners are clearly under fire in this information war, so how should they fight back?

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David S. Jackson

David Jackson is a veteran journalist and former U.S. government official with extensive multimedia communications experience in domestic and international markets.

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Author: David S Jackson

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