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Twitter is not for Ghana Police, get a social networking policy and come back

…………………………..Part 2 ………………………………..

This follow-up post to Who do you want to be on twitter will basically use the @ghanapolice as a case in point for why a public institution needs a policy/ strategy before entering the seemingly fun but serious arena of social networking.


Following 429 Followers 90 List 2

Tweets 6

The above are the stats of @ghanapolice on twitter as of 4th November, 2010, 19:04pm

The above stats point to a Category 4 twitter user – Spammers and Irregular users and it is not helped by the kind of people @ghanapolice is following.

– Ashton Kutcher?

– Oprah?

– Hatoyamayukio? [who only tweets in Japanese]

– Huffington Post?

Seriously, any overly critical person will take the @ghanapolice for granted based on the people it is following. How do the above people help in nation building or policing a nation in a web 2.0 world of e-governance? Who can convince me that the account is not being managed by a university graduate/ student who knows close to little about managing the social networking front of the GHANA POLICE or the serious nature of the job he/ she has taken on.

I suggest you take the time to go through the list of people @ghanapolice is following to understand my indignation. The only plausible case I can manufacture is that the @ghanapolice account was formerly owned by a young person until it was bought from him/ her, just so the Ghana Police wouldn’t have to struggle to get another name.

Having said that, I will entreat you to read the blog post by @ekbensah to get some perspective on the ‘discovery’ of the @ghanapolice twitter account by the Ghanaian twitting public…. THE HUNT FOR BLUE OCTOBER

Below is a guideline that I believe will make the @ghanapolice twitter account get serious:

1. Do not follow political figures – The Ghana Police Service is a politically neutral body

2. Do not follow local or international celebrities – The Ghana Police Service is not about fun and party

3. Do not follow personal friends or acquaintances – The Ghana Police Service is for everyone and not a few friends

4. Do not tweet unofficial or information not approved for public release by The Ghana Police Service

5. Do not respond to tweets or Direct Messages unless it has been officially sanctioned

6. Retweet information that has been verified. Example an accident reported by a local radio station and confirmed by a policeman

7. Draft a daily/weekly security tweet to be approved by the Police Service for regular tweeting for followers

I believe it is the duty of the Ghana Police Service Public Affairs Directorate to clearly state in a policy document how they want their twitter account to be managed; what tweets to be posted on the account, who to follow and how to respond to followers questions, tips or information.

I believe KPIs should be set to measure how effective this communication (public relations) tool – Twitter is being utilized to determine whether it is worth paying an external consultant to maintain. If after 1 month the @ghanapolice account has only 90 followers, then I daresay that someone is not doing their job of getting information to the Ghanaian public by twitter. The Public Affairs Directorate should take the opportunity to talk about the @ghanapolice twitter account when they get on radio stations.

I suggest the @ghanapolice account manager does these in addition to relaying Ghana Police Service Public Information:

1. Tweet on Public Safety or Traffic Safety

2. Daily Security Tips [for Ghanaians]

2. Retweet followers information on accidents or other emergencies

PS: To think that @ghanapolice has no tweets on the alleged? Bus Robbery and Mass Rape Hoax? leads me to think that Twitter is not for the Ghana Police Service. They should come back when they have a policy and want to be open about things.

The latest post by @ghanapolice is a WANTED BY POLICE notice. Sadly it doesn’t come with a picture!

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