ACDC News – Issue 09-14

Paying attention to media coverage of H1N1 flu in the U. S. Here are several recent analyses of the amount and kinds of media attention devoted to the H1N1 flu:

Media drumbeat amplifies coverage of flu outbreak

Pew Study: Top U. S. papers’ swine flu coverage lacking ?”

A fierce outbreak of swine flu coverage

Media coverage: Influenza A (H1N1) outbreak 2009

New IFAJ report highlights 11 uses of blogs to cover agriculture . Visit the web site of the International Federation of Agricultural Journalists to see a recent review of ways in which journalists in various countries are using blogs to cover agriculture. Uses range from entertainment to hard-news coverage, and beyond. Maybe you can add to this list, from your experience.

Citation: Why and how journalists around the world are using blogs to cover agriculture
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Campaign promotes fair trade in the United Kingdom. We have added to the ACDC collection a case report about “Fairtrade Fortnight.” The author is Barbara Crowther of the Fairtrade Foundation, a UK-based independent body that awards the FAIRTRADE Mark to products. The 2009 Fortnight took place during late February and early March. According to this report, the 2008 campaign secured 5,300 media hits across various UK media and involved other activities such as 12,000 local events and visiting farm organization representatives from abroad.

“Our campaign reached an estimated 15 million adults, whilst retailers reported increased product sales during the Fortnight,” Crowther reported.

Citation: Fairtrade Fortnight whets consumer appetite
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No picture without people. “Zooming zestfully: documentary on photo journalism” is a 12-minute exploration of a photojournalist’s approach to working in rural India. Freelance photographer Zishaan Latif permitted two journalism students to document him on the job.

“The human side of life” is Latif’s beat and he explains that he takes no picture without people. This report, available on YouTube, features some of his photos. You will also see how he goes about taking them.

Citation: Zooming zestfully
View the video at > Search on “zooming zestfully”

How students gain global agri-food perspectives (plus media skills). Fifty-one University of Illinois students have been “immersed” in the European agri-food sector during the past two years. At the same time, they have learned to use a variety of communications skills. These students have done so through an International Business Immersion Program (IBIP) program with the theme: “Firm, channel and industry dynamics within the European agri-food sector.” Each year, they completed a preparatory course on campus, then an intense two-week immersion in agri-food activities throughout Europe. On the communications side, each student learned and applied skills in research reporting, interviewing, blogging, video production and article writing.

You can learn more about the program and see the trip book and photos during students’ 2008 and 2009 studies in Europe at:

Juan Valdez: updating the image of a global icon. Since 1959, a sombrero-wearing Colombian farmer, Juan Valdez, has served as “coffee ambassador to the world.” Colombia is recognized as the first South American nation to claim an association between a country and a world commodity. Recently, the image of Juan Valdez has been retooled. Reporting recently in the International Public Relations Association web site, Juan-Carlos Molleda explained steps the National Federation of Coffee Growers of Colombia has taken since 2004. The Federation has revamped the Valdez image to one of a youthful and authentic identity through a national contest that included the active participation of real Colombian coffee growers.

Citation: Authentic passion about Colombia
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Communicator activities approaching

August 23-27, 2009
“Worldwide trends in open access to agricultural information.” Agricultural libraries discussion group at the World Library and Information Congress of the International Federation of Library Associations and Institutions (IFLA) in Milan, Italy.

August 26-28, 2009
“Information and communication technologies for sustainable development.” 4th World Information Technology Forum in Hanoi, Vietnam.

August 31-September 4, 2009
Sixth International Conference of Animal Health Information Specialists in Brisbane, Queensland, Australia. Held in conjunction with the International Congress on Medical Librarianship.

September 10-12, 2009
“Shaping the future marketplace: the opportunity hunters.” Annual conference of the Canadian Farm Writers’ Federation in Edmonton, Alberta, Canada.

October 15, 2009
Deadline for submission of abstracts of papers and posters to be presented at the International Association of Agricultural Information Specialists (IAALD) XIIIth World Congress, Montpellier, France, April 26-29, 2010. Theme: “Scientific and technical information and rural development: highlights of innovative practices.”

October 15-18, 2009
Annual conference of the Association of Food Journalists in Houston, Texas.

Precision ag sends courtship message. We close this issue of ACDC News with an example of using precision farming technologies for special kinds of communicating. Thanks to ZimmComm New Media for calling our attention to it.

You can see how a Texas crop grower recently used his GPS-based guidance system to plow the letters of his marriage proposal to his girlfriend, Lauren. She got the message when he invited her for an airplane ride that passed over the property. View the couple and the proposal message at:

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 .

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.