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Digital Diplomacy-1

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Digital Diplomacy-1

 

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International relations have been improving from the past to present. Diplomacy has an important place in carrying out of these relationships. Diplomacy has begun being emphasized in the development of intergovernmental relations, especially in the determination of peaceful means to the solutions. Today, diplomacy is not only include political but also many economical, commercial, military and cultural fields.

Throughout the history, numerous definitions of diplomacy have been made. The concept of diplomacy, in the sense of conducting international relation processes, was first used by Edmund Burke in 1976. Burke defined the diplomacy as a “skill and tactics used in conducting interstate relations and negotiations”.1

Diplomacy has been subject to various distinctions in the historical process. Diplomacy has also developed due to the the improvements in technology. Hence, the increasing importance of technology and evolving data network should not be ignored in terms of diplomacy.

In today’s world, all parties involved in the political, diplomatic, and political processes, from foreign ministers to clerks can access social media platforms equally or can create a website. In an issue of The Guardian in November 2016, it was reported that WhatsApp has become the main means to the communication in diplomatic circles, including some important voting and negotiation processes at the UN and EU headquarters.2

Diplomacy, acknowledged  as a closed world where public realm is intense, has also begun gaining a new dimension thanks to developing communication technologies. For example, Russian Foreign Ministry improved especially the use of Twitter in order to   fix the uninteresting and dull image. For example, there was this dialogue on Twitter between the CIA and the Russian Foreign Ministry: CIA tweeted an job ad for Russian-speaking, new university graduates, and the Russian Foreign Ministry responded with a tweet saying: “We are ready to help with experts and referrals”, There are more examples similar that show that the diplomacy is becoming new and dynamic.3

In addition, the prevention of religious, political, and sociological false information content spreading on virtual platforms has become a topic of digital diplomacy. tAs these contents can cause serious social criseses, and diplomatic communications to halt and if not escalate them. So automation has a critical importance for diplomacy.

Since a crisis caused by bots can turn into a mass chaos, major problems for ambassadors can occur,. The ambassadors may prefer to remain silent, inn order not to harm their own government interests in the face of these events,. However, it should be noted that, the avoidance of interaction may harm computational diplomacy efforts, if the account belongs to a natural person.

While diplomats existing in the social media can be an effective way to find a solution in a short time, they can also create some uncertain situations. For example, a diplomat liking or sharing a foreign policy article may cause it to be interpreted as an official government point of view. This can lead to a controversy and may involve ordinary citizens in the debate, furthermore, what can be done in the face of these reactions to anonymous accounts, can pose a fundamental problem.4 The way to prevent this is, to respond only to the accounts that have been verified or at least appear to have a real name. Another way is, workingwith data scientists to map the network of political processes and trying to figure out which accounts have the most effective and leading positions in a political debate.5

Digitalization, which can create ambiguity and disturbance, can be used to capture more efficient and beneficial results through government policies to be followed. Artificial intelligence which has gained momentum today, can also be used in the field of diplomacy. Artificial intelligence diplomats can be developed to respond to the questions of citizens in the virtual environment and can be more active in generating quick solutions.

For artificial intelligence to be used more effectively and efficiently, it must be transformed into a state policy and be improved as an international business cooperation. For example, Russian President Vladimir Putin has stated emphasizing the importance of the artificial intelligence.  Putin said that the ones holding the upper hand in the artificial intelligence would “rule the world” and stressed that the future belonged to the artificial intelligence.  He noted that this was not  valid for only Russia but for all humanity.  Also, he added that despite the artificial intelligence was bringing along unpredictable threats, Russia wanted to be ahead in the race.Besides he mentioned that he did not want this monopoly to be held by some people, vocalizing his concern that the seizure of this power by some parties.6

Another proof of this changing world is the United Arab Emirates; her income is mostly from petroleum and is investing in these futuristic technological developments.  The interest in attracting artificial intelligence has been raised to the level establishing a ministry concentrating on it. The United Arab Emirates appointed a new minister in the cabinet, responsible for artificial intelligence. The prime minister Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid announced the new minister with a tweet.7

These developments display that the digital diplomacy is, today, one of the main cornerstones of the diplomacy notions. The governments are evolving  to adopt new policies and cultivate new cooperation’s in order to attune to this digital medium.

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  1. http://www.diplomasi.net/diplomasi-nedir/
  2. BORGER, Julian; RANKIN, Jennifer; LYONS, Kate;BORGER, Julian; RANKIN, Jennifer; LYONS, Kate;https://www.theguardian.com/technology/2016/nov/04/why-do-diplomats-use-this-alien-whatsapp-emojifor-vladimir-putin
  3. ÜNVER, H. Akın; Bilişimsel Diplomasi; sf.8
  4. Unver, sf.5
  5. Unver, sf.9
  6. GelecekYapayZekayaAit;http://www.cumhuriyet.com.tr/haber/teknoloji/815992/Gelecek_yapay_zek_ya_ait.html
  7. EYİDİLLİ, Sami; Birleşik Arap Emirlikleri, yapay zekadan sorumlu bakan atadı;https://webrazzi.com/2017/10/20/birlesik-arap-emirlikleri-yapay-zekadan-sorumlu-bakan-atadi/
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