U.S. Federal Document of the Month
Written by Charmaine Henriques
Title: Dipnotes: U.S. Department of State Official Blog
Agency: United States Department of State
URL: http://blogs.state.gov/ 
Starting with print then transitioning to microform and now in the electronic environment of CD/DVDs and web based publications; U.S government information has always been distributed in a variety of formats. But now the Federal government is not just embracing different forms and distribution of information, but also different forms of communication. With the rise of Web 2.0 technology and an ever growing multimedia world, many agencies like the Census Bureau, the Library of Congress, and even the Whitehouse all have blogs (web logs). One of the best blogs available is June's U.S. Federal Document of the Month: Dipnotes: U.S. Department of State Official Blog.
The mission of the U.S. Department of State is to advance freedom for the benefit of the American people and the international community by helping to build and sustain a more democratic, secure, and prosperous world composed of well-governed states that respond to the needs of their people, reduce widespread poverty, and act responsibly within the international system. Through its websites and other online resources, the State Department offers broad public access to a wide range of information. Dipnotes offers the public an alternative source to mainstream media for U.S. foreign policy information, and offers the opportunity for participants to discuss important foreign policy issues with senior Department officials. Topics on the blog are divided into geographic regions and there are sections devoted specifically to travel and even a question of the week feature which proposes a question and solicits individuals to comment. There are also slideshows, photographs, and videos and individuals can subscribe to different entries via RSS feeds in order to get new content. As it says in its description, Dipnotes is a place to share stories, discuss experiences, and inspire new ideas on the important foreign policy issues of the day.
Sui Zhang