Rename DipNote Effort Gets Not So Hilarious Suggestions From Chattering Crowd

We previously blogged about the State Department’s crowdsourcing effort to give its official blog, DipNote a makeover (see State Dept Crowdsourcing New Blog Name – What’s Wrong With DipNote?).

As part of the Department of State’s redesign, the blog may get a new name.  Department employees worldwide apparently submitted more than 370 submissions for a new name for the blog. Last week, the public was asked to select one name from the top four blog names suggested by the employees:

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

We don’t know if everyone who posted in the comments section of DipNote all voted but we noticed that a good number of them also posted their own blogname suggestions. A few samples below from the public’s abundant imagination:

  • Lol in Virginia writes: Spin Department or Propaganda Machine
  • Scott P. in Massachusetts writes: New Blogt Name — State of Affairs @StateofAffairs
  • Christy M. in New York writes: Try: 1)”QODUS” for The Quarter of Diplomacy in United States; or 2)”DOQUS for Diplomacy Operation Quarter of United States; or 3) USDOQ for United States Diplomacy Operation Quarter; or DUSQ for Diplomacy United States Quarter; or USDOQ for United States Diplomacy Operations Quarter
  • Mike S. in Pennsylvania writes: State It” Sometimes in naming you need to start all over. None of the lowest common denominator proposed names has any life or zing. It promises that the blog might be the same. Please find a name with zip such as the above suggestion or another submission.
  • Frank D. in New York writes: How about “Lies My Government Told Me”?
  • Edwyne R. in Texas writes: Blues News
  • Tom in Colorado writes: View Abroad
  • P. Kumar in Virginia writes:  My Suggestion for the Name of the State Dept Blog: StateSide
  • Cristian in Romania writes: Blogmerica
  • Katherine in the U.S.A. writes:  Foggy Bottom would be hilarious, though Unclassified would draw more folks in…
  • A.Y.C. writes: Peter Van Buren!
  • Willie W. in the U.S.A. writes: “Gayanashagowa” (the “Great Law of Peace”) Origin: Six Nations of the Iroquois (Haudenosaunee)
  • Erin S. in Virginia writes: Diplo-phone: like megaphone!
  • Michael in the U.S.A. writes: US DiploBlog
  • Donald M. in Virginia writes: Theres an old saying, “if it works don’t fix it” whats wrong with the current blog name? I like it and its fitting for what it does.
  • Betty D. in Idaho writes: BLOG FOG
  • W.W. writes: I would call it : UncleSam International
  • Eric in New Mexico writes: USDOSFAB” ??  


We thought that last one, USDOSFAB good as in USDOSFabulous.  No such luck, it turns out that simply means, “United States Deptartment Of State Foreign Affairs Blog.

Comedy Central’s Indecision, by the way,  considered it a shame that only State employees were asked to submit names for the jazzed-up site coming in 2013.  It posted that they have a many great ideas for blog names and content to feature at relaunch, such as:

  • BuzzState, featuring “15 Cats That Look Like Heads of State”
  • Diplomatic Pouches from Last Night, including this submission: “LOL I am so baked right now, XOXO – Ambassador Rudolf Bekink, Royal Netherlands Embassy”
  • Sttdprtmntr, which is American policy expressed entirely in GIFs
  • Hillary’s Livejournal, with the top entry: “Waiting for the Senate to confirm my successor. Mood: pensive.”

Even Twitchy got into the act, collecting suggestions from Twitter just for fun:

  • @BryTupper “State of Disbelief”
  • @rellis168 How about naming it Dodge Ball?
  • @theGrudgeRetort The Onion @StateDept
  • @serr8d  “Doublethink”
  • @Crapplefratz  “The Daily Stand-Down”

The names are certainly … um interesting, but they pale in comparison to the ones from 2007.  Don’t know who came up with these but way back when DipNote was just launched, the Top Ten Rejected State Department Blog Names apparently surfaced online.  Published here by FishbowlDC and  here by The Beltway Confidential. Please don’t fall off your chairs.

10. Blackwater Serenade
9. Condi Meant (First Post title: “Condi Fiddles while Nick Burns”).
8. Kinky Boots (First Post title: “The Twee Communiques”).
7. I Can’t Believe It’s Not Rumsfeld! (First Post Title: “Allegro Con Dolcezza!”)
6. Bottom-up Reconciliation (whoops! That was supposed to be in the “Top Ten Rejected Larry Craig blog names”).
4. The Crocker Barrel (First Post: “The Global War On Errorism”)
3. The Wolf o’ Wits
2. Laying The Morning Cable (First Post: “I’ve Got Your Long Telegram Right Here, bub!”)
1. http://www.bitemejohnboltonwe’

What colorful names!  DipNote may not rock your world but it could have been a lot worse.

domani spero sig



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