There has been a lot of talk about government social media accounts and the current administration. The issues apparently began when the Department of the Interior’s National Park Service retweeted a photo comparing the audience of President Obama’s inauguration ceremony with the audience of the current president’s inauguration ceremony.
In response to that, and the alleged silencing of social media accounts for ecology- and agriculture-related departments like the Environmental Protection Agency and the U.S. Department of Agriculture, “an ex-employee” of Badlands National Park accessed the park’s Twitter account and began tweeting climate facts in protest of the current administration’s stand on climate change.
The tweets were soon deleted, and Badlands National Park’s Twitter had no posts for the next three days.
In response to the alleged “gag order” imposed by the current administration, many agencies have started Twitter accounts that are not subsidized by taxpayer money. Alternate U.S. National Park Service was the first of these. That account’s profile reads “The Unofficial #Resistance team of U.S. National Park Service. Come for rugged scenery, science facts & climate change information. Run by non-gov individuals.”
Following an order from the current administration that all EPA public-facing documents, including the website, press releases, and studies, must go through political review, the Alternate EPA account began tweeting environmental news. The information on the account’s profile reads, “He can take our official Twitter but he’ll never take our FREEDOM. Unofficial EPA #resistance. #factsmatter”
An Alternate NASA account is also tweeting climate facts and other news related to the space agency. Their account profile reads, “The unofficial #resistance team of the National Aeronautics and Space Administration. Operated by a #US citizen that is not affiliated with any Federal Agency.”
We can anticipate that there will be more of these “rogue” accounts as long as people at these agencies feel they are being silenced by the current administration.
Do you think these “rogue” accounts are appropriate? Would you support them, or would you prefer that social media outreach originated directly from these agencies? Please share your thoughts in the comments.