E-mail is most preferred channel to deal with govt
According to an online opinion poll conducted through the official portal of the UAE Government (government.ae), 66.5 per cent of the respondents prefer e-mail to other channels when dealing with government entities.
The poll question asks participants, “How do you prefer to communicate with government entities?” The options to choose from are: e-mail, Go there personally, SMS, Facebook, Twitter, Forum, and Other.
Commenting on the results of the poll, Salem Khamis Al Shair Al Suwaidi, Deputy Director-General for Information and eGovernment Sector, Telecommunications Regulatory Authority (TRA), said the poll reflects only the opinions of the portal users and that it is not based on a scientific surveying methodology.
Al Suwaidi noted that many people have reservations about using social media to contact the government especially when it comes to sharing personal data and transactions due to the lack of privacy on such tools compared to e-mails.
However, Al Suwaidi stressed that it is necessary that government entities communicate with the public using all available channels including social media channels such as Facebook and Twitter. “I would like to take this opportunity to stress on the importance of social media tools as new channels to communicate with the public. These channels should be added to the list of traditional means of communication with the public especially in dealing with complaints and enquiries,” Al Suwaidi said.
In 2011, the TRA issued the ‘Guidelines for Social Media Usage for government entities in the UAE’ document to provide entities in the UAE with policy guidelines on how to use social media tools in a responsible, safe and effective manner to communicate with the public and engage them in the decision making process.
The official portal of the UAE Government (government.ae) adopts various channels to communicate with the public including social media channels such as Facebook, Twitter and YouTube. Users can also communicate with the eGovernment through a discussion forum, a blog and an online chat service.