Twitter is often dismissed as perpetuating unmoderated, irrational communication, characterized by a simplistic and overly negative engagement between one actor and others. The ease of communication Twitter provides also suggests that information shared or sourced from the microblogging platform should not be valued.

Yet we cannot deny that Twitter is increasingly used between states and their policymakers. Twitter is used both to signal intentions and to provide an effective platform for dialogue when traditional face-to-face diplomacy is limited. Even more so, policy statements on Twitter by state leaders can provoke strong emotional reactions from their counterparts, potentially inciting or exacerbating political crises.

Key here is U.S. President Donald Trump’s use of Twitter in negotiations with other states such as Mexico, China, and Iran. If we are attuned to these dynamics, we can realize the powerful role Twitter has in world politics.

About Visual Politics Seminar Series

Listed below are the past and upcoming sessions of the Visual Poltics Seminar Series. Beginning from September 2016, the majority of seminars can be heard on the UQ POLSIS YouTube channel. If you would like more details, have any questions, or if you would like to present your own work please contact Prof Roland Bleiker at