July News and Research from the ACDC – Issue 22-07

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Rural youths in India turn into citizen journalists

“At a time when the International Human Rights Day was being celebrated with much excitement across the world, a silent story of change was being scripted in the community hall” of a small town in northern India. So began a recent article in The Hans India. It explained how rural youths were telling government officials about challenges plaguing their villages. As citizen journalists, they discussed issues such as child marriage, problems of dowry, gender discrimination, wearing Ghoonghat Pratha, suffering from hunger, and casteism.

The district collector commended students for advancing the important role of media as a pillar of democracy and for helping build nationhood.


You can read the article online here.

A call:  Let’s expand constructive efforts to address destructive social conflicts

Recently we added to the ACDC collection a 13-page road map to address the “destructive-conflict-as-usual way in which the U.S. and so many other societies now commonly address complex, large-scale, intractable conflicts…”

It was written in 2019 by Guy Burgess and Heidi Burgess of the Conflict Information Consortium, University of Colorado. They argue that such conflicts represent the single greatest threat to humanity and the planet. They drafted this statement to describe the challenge and invite suggestions for a broad collaborative effort to manage conflict in constructive rather than destructive ways.

You can read the statement here.

“There’s a lot the Postal Service can do”

A new document in ACDC features a 202l interview with Lisa Graves, political activist and senior fellow of the Center for Media and Democracy. She emphasized the unique, valuable role of the U.S. Postal Service and identified several ways in which it might be more fully engaged in public service. Among the ideas she suggested:

  • A hub for internet access
  • A charging station for electric cars
  • An informal gathering place in local communities
  • Banking services for underbanked communities


You can read this interview here.

 How consumers view climate change these days

“Concern about climate change is real for consumers surveyed recently by The Packer,” a news enterprise serving the food industry. Among the respondents, 87% rated addressing climate change as important (25%), very important (24%) or extremely important (38%) to their overall sustainability priorities.

Here are the top five reasons they cited:

  • Combat climate change
  • Improve human health
  • Reduce food waste
  • It’s the responsible thing to do
  • Reduce air pollution

You can read a summary of the survey findings here.

A lingering environmental case study of not listening

“The people of Flint are still suffering,” read the headline of a January 2022 article we have added in ACDC. The article features an interview with investigative reporter Jordan Chariton of the independent news network Status Coup News. This conversation involves a controversial decision in 2014 to switch the source of drinking water in Flint, Michigan – and follow-up disputes about continuing effects of heavy metal poisoning on residents.

Reporter Chariton said “…there’s been a lot of …’we hear you and we’re going to do everything for you.’ But if you talk to the people of Flint, they are still screaming for help.”  He also observed that “the local media of Michigan has essentially continued this narrative that the water is fine now, and let’s move on.”

You can read the interview here.

Communicator events approaching

Uncertainties of the COVID-19 health issue continue to prompt flexible event planning. Here are plans of which we are aware, with contact information you can use for details.

July 16-20, 2022

“On point.” Agricultural Media Summit in Raleigh, North Carolina. Sponsored by the American Agricultural Editors’ Association (AAEA), Connectiv Agri-Media Committee, and Livestock Publications Council (LPC).

Information: https://agmediasummit.com

July 20-24, 2022

International Society of Weekly Newspaper Editors. Conference in Louisville, Kentucky. Information: https://iswne.org/annual_conferences

September 21-22, 2022

Professional Development Workshop sponsored by the Cooperative Communicators Association (CCA) in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma.

Information: https://www.communicators.coop/professional-development/workshops/

October 10-12, 2022

National Agri-Marketing Association (NAMA). Fall conference in Minneapolis, Minnesota.

Information: https://web.nama.org/events/2022-fall-conference-402/details

November 16-18, 2022

National Association of Farm Broadcasting (NAFB). Annual conference in Kansas City, Missouri. Information: https://nafb.com/events/nafb-convention

Dealing with life

We close this issue of ACDC News with a piece of advice about observing and dealing with life. It comes from Jerry Apps in his 1998 book, Rural Wisdom.

“Remember to listen for the whispers and look in the shadows.”

Best regards and wishes

ACDC is a resource for you, so please feel free to invite our help as you search for information. You are welcomed to follow us on Twitter @ACDCUIUC. And please suggest (or send) agricultural communications documents we might add to this unique and valued international collection. We welcome them in hard copy (sent to Ag Comm Documentation Center, 510 ACES Library, 1101 S. Goodwin Avenue, University of Illinois, Urbana, IL 61801) – or in electronic format sent to acdc@library.illinois.edu