ACDC News – Issue 04-18


Farm chemical advertising – mirroring the times.

A 40-year analysis of pesticide advertising in two midwestern U.S. farm magazines identified changing images in response to changes in the socio-cultural setting. Researchers traced changes in pictorial metaphors and brand names used in advertisements during three eras – science, control and environment/nature – between 1948 and 1998.

The current trend? They found “pesticide advertisements in agricultural media create connotations and associations between pesticides and land stewardship ethics.” Biotechnology represents a “new green area for agricultural advertising.”
Author: Flora, C.B. and Kroma, M.M.
An abstract of the article was posted online at:

How to build coalitions.

We recently added to the ACDC collection a useful resource for education campaign planners. “How to build long lasting and effective coalitions” is the title of this “skill sheet” from the Endangered Species Coalition.

The resource offers suggestions within the context of three coalition models: endorsement, associate and partner.

Reference: How to build long lasting and effective coalitions
The resource was posted on:

An invisible agricultural social science.

If you want to see where the communications discipline fit into the social science community of U.S. agriculture colleges 17 years ago, we can suggest a window for your view. Look through a document we added recently to the ACDC collection: “Proceedings of Phase I Workshop: Social Science Agricultural Agenda Project.”

This 377-page proceeding did not recognize agriculture-related communications as a rural social science. Instead, “The…areas of concern include agricultural economics, rural sociology and anthropology, agricultural history, the social science aspects of home economics, agricultural law, agricultural political science and the like.”

Ironically, reports from all four workgroups called for communications teaching and research to address information deficiencies through effective delivery and use of agricultural information/knowledge.

Reference: Proceedings of Phase I Workshop: Social Science Agricultural Agenda Project

Raising the profile of rural journalism.

“Created in 2001 and staffed in August 2004, the Institute for Rural Journalism and Community Issues is a multi-disciplinary, multi-institutional, multi-state effort, based at the University of Kentucky. Its job is to help local news organizations set the public agenda for their communities and cover regional issues, and interpret rural issues for national media.”

According to announcement documents we have added to the ACDC collection, a two-year, $250,000 grant from the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation will permit:
” A major survey of rural media
” A popular rural journalism Web site
” A class in rural journalism
” Training for rural journalists
” A conference bringing together national experts and rural journalists.

Veteran journalist Al Cross has joined the School of Journalism and Telecommunications as interim director of the Institute. A new Web log, “Rural Blog,” went online August 9.

Reference: Creation of the Institute
Information about the Institute and links to the Web log were posted online at:

Examining news models for national development.

Margaretha Geertsema recently explored five models for appropriateness in post-Apartheid South Africa:
” The Western model of journalism
” Development journalism
” Development communication
” Development support communication
” Public journalism

This analysis included a description of each model, plus a review of literature identifying perceived strengths and limitations of each. Geertsema argued for implementing in South Africa a combination of public journalism and development journalism “to help with community connectedness and nation building. The traditional Western press model does not offer a constructive framework for change and reconciliation…”

Reference: New news for a new South Africa?
Author: Geertsema, Margaretha
Posted online at: (September 2003, Week 5)

Development – no longer what happens “over there.” 

It is “as much in our back yards,” argued Edna Einsiedel in Redeveloping Communication for Social Change. “There is a ‘First World’ in the so-called South as there is a ‘Third World’ in our midst. … Our work as development communicators puts us squarely in the midst of a commitment to and interest in questions of equity and equality, sustainability, and issues of social justice and social change.”

Reference: Border crossings: gender, development and communication
Author: Einsiedel, Edna

Agricultural writing of 500 years ago.

An article last year in the Journal of Business Communication revealed some agricultural writing of an English family between 1509 and about 1750. The Gawdy Papers, located in the British Library, highlight generations of activities of the Gawdy family of Norfolk. Papers include correspondence and other documentation about land acquisition and management, crop and livestock production and marketing, commodity prices, collection of rent and other agribusiness interests.

Reference: Gawdy papers
Author: Richardson

Communicator activities approaching.

October 17-20, 2004
Annual convention of Communication Officers of State Departments of Agriculture (COSDA) in Nashville, Tennessee USA.

October 20-24, 2004
Annual conference of the Society of Environmental Journalists in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania USA.

November 4-6, 2004
Annual workshop of the National Market News Association in Baltimore, Maryland USA.

November 17-19, 2004
“60 Years of Communicating Agriculture.” Annual convention of the National Association of Farm Broadcasters (NAFB) in Kansas City, Missouri USA.

Great idea for the dieter.

In closing, we share this piece of food journalism reported in a journal article about on-air bloopers. According to researcher Raymond Schuessler, announcer Ed Herlihy once advised listeners: “Another delicious combination for these hot days is a Kraft chilled grease sandwich with a choke.”

Reference: Bloopers
Author: Schuessler, R.

Best regards and good searching.  

Please pass along your reactions, suggestions and ideas for ACDC. Feel free to invite our help as you search for information. And please suggest (or send) agricultural communications documents that we might add to this unique collection. Send

hard copies to:
Ag Com Documentation Center
510 LIAC Library
1101 S. Goodwin Avenue
Urbana, IL 61801
or electronic copies to:

October, 2004

Updated on