I came across a very interesting article discussing how social media is increasingly being used by law enforcement, the fire department and government at large alike. Officials are able to use social media to communicate with the public and receive feedback about the types of services that are being offered in communities around the country. Official twitter and Facebook streams are increasingly using social media to get the publics attention about local crimes, allow citizens to post about crimes in their communities and deliver information on a whole host of subjects that are in the public interests. Such subjects include school and road closures, new construction, and a host of civic issues. The concept is now new. Public officials, businesses, and everything in between have had official feeds on social networking platforms for the last couple years.The difference in this trend is that city governments taking to social media is both to be informative and interactive. The official feeds also allow for greater coordination amongst different agencies to better coordinate responses to emergencies and alerts, and to provide better transparency to programs and initiatives of local government. Counties in Virginia have been leading the way, and what has been the most popular are post related to recreational activities. The streams have also allowed real time shadowing of a police officer in one county to show the highs and lows of a typical day with an officer ( a la cops style).
My question is how good of an idea is it for governments to get official social media accounts, and do you think it’s redundant when politicians also have accounts?
What more could be offered through social media networks other than delivering news by local government agencies?