The World’s Most Democratic Twitter Account: @Sweden

The Curators of Sweden is a project that aims to present Sweden through the eyes of ordinary citizens. Every week, a Swede takes the exclusive control over the Twitter account, @Sweden.This initiative of the National Board for the promotion of Sweden is to create interest in and arouse curiosity for Sweden by painting the picture of Sweden with the new media.

I first thought that it was a innovatively democratic approach to mass communication by the government. The project isn’t all about what the tweets say. It will be about what the nation is doing with a Twitter account. I also thought that since it targets the worldwide audience, it could be a great way to recover from the unexpected damage to the peaceful reputation of Scandinavian countries caused by the tragic gun shooting in Norway last year.

Below, I’ve captured some of the tweets by @Sweden since last December. The tweets consist of outright promotion of Swedish culture, comments on social issues, personal rambling, and even irresponsible comments and links to inappropriate pictures.

Despite the risk coming from handing over the national Twitter account to untrained Swedes, the Curators of Sweden must not not be strictly regulate the tweets beforehand or go through a strict selection process for the account holders. These practices would defeat the democratic purpose of this unique Twitter account. However, they will need to come up with and establish proper guidelines in order to avoid any incident that might cause the twitter account to lose its credibility or authenticity. But again, the significance here is more of what Sweden is doing with its Twitter account instead of what the tweets say.

I believe it is a great attempt to promote Sweden because it seeks the engagement with the rest of the world instead of simply trying to project its image one-sidedly. It allows Sweden to effectively monitor its international image through the dialogue with the international audience. Moreover, the twitter account, both with a personal touch and the gravity that only a national Twitter account can have, successfully democratizes the country brand of Sweden.