By Mrs. Beth Clemons (ACC )May 21, 2009
The U.S. Army Materiel Command can now be found on many of your favorite social media Web sites including Facebook, YouTube, Flickr, iReport, LinkedIn and Twitter.
"By taking our message to the general public, rather than expecting them to come to us, we educate a whole new population on the efforts of AMC's Soldiers, civilians and contractors," said Col. Archie Davis, AMC chief of Public and Congressional Affairs.
AMC provides superior technology, acquisition support and logistics to ensure dominant land force capability for Soldiers, the United States, and our Allies. In layman's terms - if a Soldier shoots it, drives it, flies it, wears it, communicates with it, or eats it - AMC provides it.
"We recognize the importance of engaging on social media platforms, such as those where AMC is engaged. This is how and where our audience gets much of their news," said Lt. Col. Kevin Arata, chief of the newly established Army Public Affairs Online and Social Media Division.
The AMC Public Affairs team began work on the various sites in late 2008. The command features images and video from its events on Flickr and highlights command-wide videos; its podcast program, the AMC NewsCast; and its video news program, the AMC News Dispatch; on YouTube and iReport. AMC's Facebook and Twitter pages combine all of these venues, and the AMC news RSS feed allows those interested to stay up-to-date.
"We are here on these platforms because in our absence other mostly well-intentioned people are speaking on behalf of the Army anyway. Our official presence on these sites fills that void with the Army's official voice," said Arata.
Davis went on to say that AMC public affairs practitioners across the world are highly encouraged to use these new tools, and many already have.
In the last year, several of AMC's subordinate organizations have launched sites of their own, including U.S. Army Research, Development and Engineering Command on YouTube, Facebook and Twitter; U.S. Army Element Assembled Chemical Weapons Alternatives can be found on YouTube and have an RSS feed; Joint Munitions Command has YouTube and TroopTube pages; Military Surface Deployment and Distribution Command is on Flickr; and Picatinny Arsenal recently joined Twitter.
"The efforts at AMC are the embodiment of the DoD principles of information: maximum disclosure, minimum delay. Working in the social media sphere puts information at the fingertips of taxpayers and opens channels of communication with those interested in what we do," said Jack Holt, DoD's senior strategist for emerging media. "There is no greater strategic communication requirement for Department of Defense than keeping the public informed."