Public diplomacy: Virtual Student Foreign Service

Public diplomacy: Virtual Student Foreign Service


The State Department is really serious about using the Net to get people to reach out to people in different countries. This is the "21st Century Statecraft" stuff, person-to-person public diplomacy. I figure it's our way of reminding the world that our government and people are serious about American values again.

The next step is the "Virtual Student Foreign Service" where students considering this form of public service can actually do something real.

here's the deal

The Virtual Student Foreign Service (VSFS), announced by Secretary Clinton at the 2009 New York University commencement speech,
is part of a growing effort by the State Department to harness
technology and a commitment to global service among young people to
facilitate new forms of diplomatic engagement.

Over the summer, the U.S. Department of State partnered 37 U.S.
diplomatic missions and associated projects with 44 current or former
interns who are now students attending universities throughout the
United States. The VSFS projects these diplomatic missions and students
will be working on in 2009-2010 include assisting in the development of
the Iraq National Museum website; helping to teach the English language
and American culture through social media outreach; environmental and
conservation curriculum planning; and researching and promoting gender

Students who are interested in following or contributing to these and other projects can join the Virtual Student Foreign Service Facebook community.



Joshua Fouts

You might be interested in the findings of "Digital Diplomacy: Understanding Islam through Virtual Worlds," a yearlong research project that @ritajking and I released earlier this year at the Carnegie Council for Ethic in International Affairs. The project was a year of research across four continents in the physical world and the virtual world of Second Life to explore new venues for cultural and public diplomacy and has been presented in recent weeks to the White House, Secretary Clinton and Undersecretary for Public Diplomacy McHale. Our findings were released in three flavors: policy recommendations, a documentary and a graphic book, all of which can be downloaded or viewed here:

Malcolm Jackson

Hello Craig, we've had this discussion before about two months ago, and its happening again…. my job hunting emails through craigslist are being incorrectly labeled as spam, and I am unable to apply for jobs through your site. My emails are 100% legitimate, I am a highly skilled professional in my field, I have relied on craigslist for close to 10 years to find work in my field (web design etc) and this new spam catcher you are using is making it difficult for me to apply for jobs through your site, and thus creating difficulties in supporting my family.
I'm very confused about why craigslist have implemented this policy which is catching legitimate emails and labeling them as spam… There are generally between 20 to 40 jobs posted to craigslist a day which I am qualified for, so I apply to them all, sometimes they are so similar, with titles like 'looking for web designer' for instance, that its perfectly legitimate to send a very similar email to many offers, and this can be done rapidly by opening all the jobs ops in new tabs in a browser and cutting and pasting the email address into a new email for each job. Surely this is an acceptable use of craigslist and indeed what the job opportunities section was created for?
The first time I bought this to your attention, it seemed from your response that you would do something to resolve the issue, but its happening again. And infact what seemed to happen at that time was that two of my email addresses seemed to end up being linked together somehow at craigslist (as I would send from one email, and receive emails from the recipient from another), and this gave me the feeling that I was being treated as a 'possible suspicious spam subject' even tho I had explained very clearly my use of craigslist and sent you and your tech team the emails I was sending so you could verify the facts for yourself.
This is a deeply challenging situation because I and I am sure many many others in this field have come to rely on craigslist as the most promising source of a new gig, in fact 90% of my work over the last 10 years has come though craigslist. I know you feel like its ok to say… "just hang in there and you'll be able to apply for jobs again tomorrow". but that presents challenges when one is living that gig to gig freelance life and has a family to support. From the email failure notice received, its not clear when the temporary block will clear, and its also not clear where the line is that one has inadvertently crossed over – its a bit like having a bipolar best friend… you never know what you're going to get…
I'd really appreciate if you take a serious look at this situation and finally find a resolution. Its too frightening to get these emails from the place you are using to apply for jobs, and to effectively find oneself 'cut off' from ones source of jobs – even for 24 hours!
Thank you.

Comments are closed.