Why Are Citizens Running The Official Twitter Account For Sweden?

Sweden certainly gets bonus points for creativity on this Twitter stunt: they’re letting one of their citizens take over their Twitter account each week, and tweet anything they like.

Cutting edge marketing or just a bit crazy?

If you visit the official account for the country of Sweden right now, @Sweden, you’ll notice a few things: one, the bio pic isn’t of the flag or a beautiful Swedish coastline – it’s of a guy who looks like he took his headshot while facing a bathroom mirror; and two, the tweets are pretty personal, and clearly from the guy in the picture and not really related to Swedish tourism at all.

And the bio really tells all you need to know about this bizarre “official” account:

“A new Swede every week! / Your crooked guide to the Swedish suburbian safari.”

Clicking over to the link in the account’s bio, you’ll be taken to Curators of Sweden, which explains more fully what’s going on.

Here, you can read the full bio of the Swedish citizen who is behind the account this week, and read the Twitter feed of @Sweden. The “About” page explains in detail that:

“Every week, someone in Sweden is @Sweden: sole ruler of the world’s most democratic Twitter account. For seven days, he or she recommends things to do and places to see, sharing diverse opinions, and ideas along the way. After that, someone else does the same—but differently. Follow all nine million of us. Welcome to Sweden.”

This initiative is meant to drive tourism by highlighting what the locals are into. Where are the cool bars, the off-the-beaten-path restaurants? If anyone knows, it’s the locals.

I love the idea behind this marketing campaigns, but I’m just not so sure the implementation is that solid. If you take a look at some of the tweets from this week’s “sole ruler of the world’s most democratic Twitter account”, it becomes pretty obvious that the “tweet whatever you want” attitude might need a few rules attached:

“I wonder what @F_Esaiasson is doing. Hard on the grind och suckling the taxpayer’s tit?”

“I got so nervous that I had to take a crap… It’s all better now….”

Tweets like these could alienate potential visitors, turning them off because of their vulgarity. Still, the account is also recommending specific bars, dance halls and Swedish foods to various users, so you never know!

What do you think? Is it a good idea to hand over the reigns of @Sweden to its citizens? Or should there be more control over what’s being tweeted? Let us know in the comments below.

(Hat tip: The Next Web, top image: Perov Stanislav courtesy of Shutterstock)