The social network has become the major channel of communication for locals and government officials

In the small town of Jun in Southern Spain (population: approximately 3,600), residents tweet at government officials to book doctor appointments or report crimes to the local police. The small town’s active social media is thanks to its mayor, José Antonio Rodríguez Salas, who has over 400,000 followers on Twitter. On his page, he’s seen in a classical Spanish building, surrounded by real life Twitter birds, one of which he holds between his hands like a treasure.

According to the New York Times, over half of the local residents are on Twitter and use it regularly to communicate with the town’s services, which began with basic alerts, like tweeting to announce a road in need of cleaning or a streetlamp in need of repair. Only handfuls of residents signed up at the beginning, testing the service sporadically, while Jun’s Information Technology Chief, María José Martínez, offered courses at the town’s community center, teaching Twitter basics like how to use hashtags or send direct messages. By 2013, Twitter’s popularity in the small town had become nearly universal.

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