State Dept Crowdsourcing New Blog Name – What’s Wrong With DipNote?

DipNote, the official blog of the Department of State will soon get a makeover.  The blog was started on September 25, 2007 with a first post by the US Assistant Secretary of State for Public Affairs Sean McCormack. See his first post here from 2007 and his last post here in 2009.  The functionality and interactivity were not tops, the design with blog text occupying two thirds column space was not ideal but — we thought it was elegant particularly the banner.


The blog first underwent a makeover in 2009 after Secretary Rice left and as Secretary Clinton assumed office with the Departments’ 21st Century Statecraft initiative. Below is the updated and current look:

We were not particularly fond of the new design. We did not grow to like it but then again we seldom visit because of well, allergies.  When we did visit, we took a strong dislike of that background with splotches that we came to call the “hesitant blue”   The deeper solid blue similar to its Tumblr account would have been much better.  But what do we know? We just know that we liked the washed out version less.

Here is part of the Media Note on this:

The updating of the State Department’s blog is part of 21st Century Statecraft — the complementing of traditional foreign policy by harnessing and adapting the digital networks and technologies of today’s interconnected world. The blog’s redesign will include greater functionality and interactivity with an emphasis on visual engagement.

So now, the blog is going to go under the knife for the second time, so to speak.  As part of the Department of State’s redesign of the official blog, Department employees worldwide submitted more than 370 submissions for a new name for the blog. The top suggestions, all four of them, are now available to the public, who are asked to vote on the final decision.

Here are the top suggestions; click here if you want to vote on the new blog name:

  • Unclassified: The State Department Blog
  • Statecraft
  • DipNote
  • Matters of State

Would be interesting to see what else were in those submissions, right?

Public voting of the new blog name started today, Friday, December 7, 2012 and can be accessed on the Department’s website, as well as the Department’s official social media presences on Facebook, Twitter, Tumblr and the blog itself. The public voting will last until Friday, December 14. The result will be announced when the new blogsite launches in  early 2013.

Umm… we can see you giving us an eye over there — what do we think about … well, let’s see:

Unclassified: The State Department Blog: Zzzzzzz. Please don’t call it that, it offends the imagination

Statecraft: Sounds like a dangerous 21st century aircraft fueled by nothing but air

DipNote: Sounds about right, except that this was a pre-Clinton era creation. What’s wrong withit? Oh, is that it?

Matters of State:  Is this like a new movie with Will Smith and Gene Hackman?

C’mon folks, is the blog name DipNote really broken? No? Then why are you fixin’ it?  Go ahead and add “greater functionality and interactivity with an emphasis on visual engagement” but  do you really have to change its name, too?

While we’re on this subject, would you please do something with DipNote’s disclaimer during the redesign? Because it says:

This blog does not represent official U.S. Department of State communications. The Digital Communications Center, Bureau of Public Affairs, manages this blog as a portal for information from the U.S. State Department.

Seriously? Who does it represent? What …

Oh, hey, we just thought of a really shiny blog name.

How about “Matters of Official Concern“? That’s straight out of the Foreign Affairs Manual. And you won’t need a disclaimer since it already says “official” right there.

domani spero sig

4 responses

  1. Pingback: Your Opinion Needed for the State Department | The Conservative Papers

  2. Pingback: State Department Needs a New Blog Name

    • Thanks D. We’ll see what happens. I understand getting employees involved, then the public in the voting, but don’t really see the need to change it given that it already has a brand of sort …