510 ACES Funk Library
1101 S. Goodwin Ave.
Urbana, IL 61801
Feb 1, 2009
Punchy drought reporting. "Jim Goodrich is, in a word, desperate. He's a rancher. He's used to being, well, concerned. Or worried. Or just dispatching a hard stare into an unforgiving sky. But being desperate is another thing. There's not a drop of cowboy romance in it."
With this lead, reporter Mike Littwin of the Rocky Mountain News described the plight of ranchers gripped by drought in southeastern Colorado. His entire article featured this punchy, graphic writing style, which you can review online.
From journalism to corporate communication in post-war Britain. That is the title of a chapter in Journalism, science and society, a recent book we have reviewed for the Center. Authors Martin W. Bauer and Jane Gregory note a change "from the state and 'public' technologies such as nuclear power and space exploration to the reporting of commercial and 'private' technologies such as biotechnology." They describe this as the "medicalization" of science news.
They also examine shifts and frictions between the traditionally skeptical professions (science and journalism) and public relations professions that "minimize controversy and a critical response."
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An honored approach to covering the "local food" scene. We learned recently of a husband-and-wife reporter team at the Anchorage Daily News that earned "News Gem" recognition for a fresh approach to reporting about local foods. In a four-part series, reporter Stephanie Komarnitsky and photographer Stephen Nowers shared with readers the experiences of their week trying to eat only locally grown and raised food.
Jon Marshall's "News Gems" are presented by the Society of Professional Journalists to highlight the best of American journalism.
Citation: Taste test
The four features in their series are posted at: http://www.adn.com/life/eating_local
Cooking up fresh insights about local foods. A creative initiative, "Schools Harvest," in New South Wales, Australia, recently involved students, teachers, local producers, chefs and others in dramatizing the whole food supply chain. It was coordinated by staff from the Hawkesbury campus of the University of Western Sydney.
Posted online at: http://web.library.uiuc.edu/asp/agx/acdc/hawk.pdf
We're gaining on it, Hadley. "Nothing would please me more than to see all of our research reference materials filed in one place," long-time associate Hadley Read reported in a memo dated July 31, 1963. At that time Hadley was extension editor here at the University of Illinois.
We came across his memo last week among some historical references being added to the ACDC collection. It set off a nostalgia binge as we think about efforts here since then to help assemble agricultural communications literature, internationally, and make it available to those who can benefit from it.
Our year-end records show that the ACDC collection now contains more than 33,500 documents, including (we hope) those to which Hadley referred more than 45 years ago.
How would you design an undergraduate agricultural journalism/communications program for the 21st Century?
Recently we were invited to offer thoughts and suggestions about this question, including several specific aspects:
Communicator activities approaching
"Not enough about popcorn!" That unexpected suggestion arrived recently from UK rural journalist Alan Stennett in response to our invitation for feedback. He was referring to a family popcorn project here, a labor of love in the tradition of Walker Evans, Jim's father. We hesitate to mention the project because:
Best regards and good searching. Please pass along your reactions, suggestions and ideas for the Agricultural Communications Documentation Center. Feel free to invite our help as you search for information. And please suggest (or send) agricultural communications documents we might add to this unique collection. We welcome them in hard copy (sent to Ag Com Documentation Center, 510 LIAC, 1101 S. Goodwin Avenue, Urbana, IL 61801) or in electronic format sent to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Get in touch with us when you see interesting items in the ACDC collection and can't gain full-text access through information in the citation, or through online searching. We will help you gain access.