I read an article on TechCrunch about Jordanian Queen Rania’s new twitter account, and it got me interested in knowing how else one can communicate with her majesty through the Web and learn her thoughts and opinions. I was impressed by the modern usage of YouTube and Twitter to publish her views and reciprocate by hearing ours in return, the people who care. But from my modest experience in social media, and my expertise in the Web and technology, I have a few points that I’d like to say out loud concerning the technological side of this enriching experience:
More two-way communication:
More than 700 tweets where sent to @QueenRania’s twitter account within the first 48 hours, but only 3 replies were sent back. I am confident that her majesty must have an extremely busy and highly productive daily schedule and that a large percentage of the tweets are simply comments or just off-topic, but I believe that there were some examples that are attention-worthy. A quick method to read only tweets with desirable keywords is via twitter search (see example). Without two-way communication, the true power of twitter to elevate the collective and argumentative intelligence of people who care is depreciated.
Moreover, as far as the official website is concerned, I am wondering why are the photos and news articles not comments enabled, even if through moderation? Isn’t the main point of a social Internet presence is to listen to the other side?
Lack of Accessibility:
Her majesty’s official site lacks the accessibility standards of the W3C. This means the people with vision impairment cannot enlarge text without disrupting the original site design or view it in different contrasts easily. Another example is people with hearing difficulties whom are being denied access to the information on YouTube videos, which can be simply provided through subtitles.
Mobile version of the official site is unavailable:
This means that a person on the road cannot view information from her majesty’s official site. It’s just a matter of another Content Management System (CMS) template that’s mobile compatible and loads only for mobile users. The information and updates are done once, centrally. This means that the information on the official site becomes just a bit more ubiquitos!
Lack of news aggregation features:
The official website lacks Web feed syndication, such as Atom or RSS, which allows people to subscribe and get news updates as soon as they get posted, as opposed to requiring them to keep on checking the site frequently for updates. Another form of aggregation can be a simple e-mail newsletter. A good developer can implement these features in a couple of hours!
How to differentiate the official from the unofficial:
Twitter and Facebook are mentioned on the official site’s main page, but what about the YouTube channel? Is it official?
I hope at least one of these points would be of value to her majesty or her technology team, and I hope to hear back with a comment, or via twitter at @amerkawar.