New FBI Twitter Account
A new, Spanish-language Twitter account was launched by the FBI on 1 July 2016, with the username @miFBIHouston. It was set up by the Houston Field Office in the hope of interacting more effectively with local residents of Hispanic background.
Spanish speakers in the USA
It is estimated that there are over 40 million native Spanish speakers in the USA, representing around 13% of the country’s total population. So you can see why the authorities feel the need to address them more directly. The city of Houston, Texas specifically has a population of around 2.2 million, and it is thought that over a third of those residents are native Spanish speakers.
Importance of social media
It is the Bureau’s first social media account to exclusively target Spanish speakers. One survey recently claimed that over a quarter of all Hispanic adults on the Internet use Twitter, so it seems a good choice to have chosen that networking service.
Special Agent Turner from the Field Office in question, commented: “In the global environment we live in, social media is the preferred method of communication for a large number of our population, both young and old. Social media has become a principal source for news and information. It makes perfect sense for us to expand our use of social media to engage the public we serve, including the Spanish-speaking social media users.”
He went on, “In order for the FBI to accomplish its mission, which is to protect the American people, we have to identify and implement effective ways to communicate with the diverse communities we serve.”