Passport

State blog keeps on trucking under new management

As Carolyn noted yesterday over at Madam S., Hillary Clinton’s new State Department comes complete with a spiffy new State.gov. Not every aspect of virtual Foggy Bottom has seen change, however. The State Department’s official blog, Dipnote, still looks exactly the same as its Bush-era incarnation. This includes, unfortunately, its eye-straining white text on black ...

589258_090122_dipnote22.jpg

As Carolyn noted yesterday over at Madam S., Hillary Clinton’s new State Department comes complete with a spiffy new State.gov. Not every aspect of virtual Foggy Bottom has seen change, however.

The State Department’s official blog, Dipnote, still looks exactly the same as its Bush-era incarnation. This includes, unfortunately, its eye-straining white text on black background design. Given how little the blog has changed — I’m guessing it’s being written on the same content management system — it’s a bit jarring to see that all the posts written before the new editors took over on Jan. 20 have been deleted removed from the blog and put in an archive page.

I also can’t help notice the conspicuous absence of Passport (or any of the new FP blogs) from Dipnote’s new blogroll. The previous editors were nice enough to add us after some cajoling. I’m not sure if we were removed before or after the changeover.

As we’ve said before, there’s no reason diploblogging can’t work. British Foreign Secretary David Miliband’s blog is a consistently good read, for instance. But blog readers are inherently skeptical of anything that looks like official boilerplate (as the Center for American Progress recently learned) and Dipnote never really provided much that wasn’t available in mainstream media coverage. Perhaps the Obama folks will be able to shake things up a bit. For now, The Cable and Madam Secretary remain the blogosphere’s go-to destinations for State Department news.

As Carolyn noted yesterday over at Madam S., Hillary Clinton’s new State Department comes complete with a spiffy new State.gov. Not every aspect of virtual Foggy Bottom has seen change, however.

The State Department’s official blog, Dipnote, still looks exactly the same as its Bush-era incarnation. This includes, unfortunately, its eye-straining white text on black background design. Given how little the blog has changed — I’m guessing it’s being written on the same content management system — it’s a bit jarring to see that all the posts written before the new editors took over on Jan. 20 have been deleted removed from the blog and put in an archive page.

I also can’t help notice the conspicuous absence of Passport (or any of the new FP blogs) from Dipnote’s new blogroll. The previous editors were nice enough to add us after some cajoling. I’m not sure if we were removed before or after the changeover.

As we’ve said before, there’s no reason diploblogging can’t work. British Foreign Secretary David Miliband’s blog is a consistently good read, for instance. But blog readers are inherently skeptical of anything that looks like official boilerplate (as the Center for American Progress recently learned) and Dipnote never really provided much that wasn’t available in mainstream media coverage. Perhaps the Obama folks will be able to shake things up a bit. For now, The Cable and Madam Secretary remain the blogosphere’s go-to destinations for State Department news.

Joshua Keating was an associate editor at Foreign Policy  Twitter: @joshuakeating

More from Foreign Policy

The Taliban delegation leaves the hotel after meeting with representatives of Russia, China, the United States, Pakistan, Afghanistan, and Qatar in Moscow on March 19.

China and the Taliban Begin Their Romance

Beijing has its eyes set on using Afghanistan as a strategic corridor once U.S. troops are out of the way.

An Afghan security member pours gasoline over a pile of seized drugs and alcoholic drinks

The Taliban Are Breaking Bad

Meth is even more profitable than heroin—and is turbocharging the insurgency.

Sviatlana Tsikhanouskaya addresses the U.N. Security Council from her office in Vilnius, Lithuania, on Sept. 4, 2020.

Belarus’s Unlikely New Leader

Sviatlana Tsikhanouskaya didn’t set out to challenge a brutal dictatorship.

Taliban spokesperson Zabihullah Mujahid

What the Taliban Takeover Means for India

Kabul’s swift collapse leaves New Delhi with significant security concerns.