A DIPLO­MAT CON­NECT­ING PEO­PLE AND DOTS

Qatar Today - - COUNTRY REPORT THE NETHERLANDS -

The Nether­lands Am­bas­sador to Qatar, Her Ex­cel­lency Yvette van Ee­choud, can be aptly called a “twiplo­mat” with a very ac­tive so­cial me­dia pres­ence, us­ing this tool to ed­u­cate and in­form ev­ery­one about the ac­tiv­i­ties of the Nether­lands Em­bassy in Qatar. Her more than 3,000 fol­low­ers are mostly from Egypt, where she worked in the Nether­lands em­bassy for four years, Qatar and her na­tive coun­try. And the num­bers are grow­ing be­cause she never misses an op­por­tu­nity to in­ter­act with them on the is­sues con­cern­ing them.

“For me, Twit­ter is a way to gauge what is hap­pen­ing and to un­der­stand so­ci­ety. I can reach out and in­ter­act with dif­fer­ent groups I usu­ally don't meet as a diplo­mat or as an am­bas­sador; I can reach out and in­ter­act with them to know what is keep­ing peo­ple busy, their likes and dis­likes. But of course, the Twit­ter com­mu­nity is not nec­es­sar­ily rep­re­sent­ing all the Qatari res­i­dents,” she says.

Yvette Van Ee­choud first started us­ing Twit­ter when she at­tended the in­au­gu­ra­tion day of Pres­i­dent Barack Obama in Washington on Jan­uary 20, 2009. “His elec­tion cam­paign as the US Pres­i­dent was the first one that ex­ten­sively us­ing Twit­ter as a cam­paign tool,” she says.

After be­com­ing a mem­ber of the Twit­ter com­mu­nity, she started com­mu­ni­cat­ing with peo­ple in Egypt dur­ing and after the revo­lu­tion. “My fol­low­ers are re­spon­sive. I tweet pri­mar­ily for a Qatari au­di­ence and I get a very good re­sponse from them. Even if my fol­low­ers don't re­spond pos­i­tively, at least I can per­son­ally re­act to them in 140 char­ac­ters about my stance,” she points out.

To con­nect to the Am­bas­sador fol­low @yvet­tevEe­choud

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