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Rotation Curation (#RotationCuration) is the concept of rotating the spokesperson of a social media account on behalf of a group bound by geographical location, such as countries and cities, as well as global organizations like international companies and associations. This collaborative approach towards public relations was first introduced in December 2011 with the Swedish government’s launch of Twitter campaign Curation of Sweden (@Sweden).
On December 10th, 2011, Sweden’s cultural and tourism outreach agencies Swedish Institute and VisitSweden unveiled a social media campaign called “Curators of Sweden,” which invites a new Swedish citizen every week to manage the Scandinavian country’s official Twitter account @Sweden.
The first Swedish national to take the wheel behind @Sweden was Jack Wermer, a writer and marketer, who ran the Twitter account from December 10th to December 18th, 2011. As of October 2012, more than 44 curators have participated in the project, revealing a truly multi-facetted and unfiltered image of Sweden.
In the following months, the campaign was widely reported in the news media, including TIME Magazine and Wall Street Journal, which praised the campaign as a “global success and an innovative way to brand a nation,” citing its track record of 9,000 tweets and 31,400 mentions in the span of five months.
Notable Curators of Sweden
Since its launch in December 2011, several curators of @Sweden have garnered attention from the news media for their unfiltered and sometimes controversial messages, starting with the inaugural curator Jack Werner, who earned the nickname “the masturbating Swede” after he tweeted a self-description of his favorite leisure activities. The tweet had been since removed.
I guess I’m drinking a lot of coffee, lighting my face up with my laptop and hanging out w friends. Oh and, you know, masturbation.
On March 22nd, 2012, Natashja Blomberg created a spark in the Swedish social media after tweeting pictures of herself breastfeeding her children.
Anyone offended by this picture? twitter.com/sweden/status/…
sweden / Christian (sweden) March 22, 2012
On June 18th, 2012, 27-year-old Sonja Abrahamsson made international headlines after tweeting her rantings about Jewish people and Judaism, which was widely perceived in the news media as a moment of public relations FAIL.
On October 11th, 2012, writer Christian Blodkorv tweeted a link to a Craigslist post in which he offered to sell the famous @Sweden account in exchange for $10,000 USD. In the post, he cited VisitSweden’s planned budget cut for 2013 as the reason for sale:
Take this oppurtunity to get your hands on one of the coolest twitter-accounts in the world! USD 10000 or more, let me know your bid directly to my mail. I will send you the password as soon as the money is on my account, but please hurry, they will change curator on sunday. Meanwhile, me and the other curators will continue to tweet about or country on twitter.com/sweden
Blodkorv’s post was mostly interpreted as a joke or an attempt at trolling, along with many other previous sardonic commentaries he has tweeted via @Sweden. Visit Sweden’s marketing director Maria Ziv responded by stating that “he neither has the password to send out nor the legal right to sell what isn’t his” in an e-mail correspondence with the internet culture blog The Daily Dot.
The press coverage of @Sweden’s success also led to the creation of similar projects based on geographical locations. On January 15th, 2012, @PeopleofLeeds was launched where citizens of Leeds take turns to represent their hometown. On January 18th, @WeAreAustralia and @TweetWeekUSA followed by @CuratorsMexico and @BasquesAbroad on January 21st. Meanwhile, the idea of location-based curation took on a life of its own as the hashtag #LocationCuration, which was coined by @kirkstallonline in late January, 2012. As similar accounts for groups unrestricted by location began to emerge, it eventually boiled down to the concept of rotating adminship known as Rotation Curation and hashtag #RotationCuration, coined by Twitter user @auldzealand on March 22nd.
- Australia – @WeAreAustralia
- Austria – @WeAreAustria
- China – @Curatorchina
- Denmark – @Denmarktweets
- Fiji – @WeAreFiji
- France – @WeareFrance
- Germany – @I_amGermany
- Ireland – @Ireland
- Malaysia – @twt_malaysia
- Mexico – @CuratorsMexico
- Netherlands – @Netherlanders
- New Zealand – @NewZealand
- Pakistan – @Iam_pakistan
- Philippines – @WeAreFilipinos
- Russia – @WeAreRussia
- Singapore – @hellofrmSG
- Sweden – @Sweden
- Syria – @TweetWeekSyria
- United Arab Emirates – @WeAreUAE
- UK – @PeopleofUK
- Ukraine – @WeAreUkraine
- USA – @TweetWeekUSA
- Wales – @PobolYCymru
- Leeds, England – @PeopleofLeeds
- Northumberland, England – @VisitNland
- Bristol, England – @Bristol52
- London, England – @londonisyours
- Hessie, England – @HessleTweets
- Harrogate, England – @PeopleofHGT
- Isle of Wight, England – @UKIsleofWight
- Bremen, Germany – @Iam_Bremen
- Dresden, Germany – @WeAreDresden
- Hamburg, Germany – @WeareHH
- Ingolstadt, Germany – @Mein_Ingolstadt
- München, Germany – @MunichLovesU
- Manilla, Philippines – @TweetWeekManila
- Södermalm, Sweden – @SodermalmSweden (parody)
- Bangkok, Thailand – @Bangkoking
- Fairfax County, Virginia, USA – @ffxrider
- Minnesota, USA – @TweetWeekMN
- New York City, New York, USA – @TweetWeekNYC
- Portland, Oregon, USA – @PeopleofPDX
- Vermont, USA – @THISISVT
Wall Street Journal – @sweden’s Citizen Driven Nation Branding is a Global Success
Curators of Sweden – http://curatorsofsweden.com/curator/natashja-blomberg/