ACDC News – Issue 19-07

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Covering “Farm Wars” in Arkansas

A podcast during April from the Center for Investigative Reporting examined how use of a weed-killing chemical, dicamba, is stirring conflict in Arkansas. In a program series, “Us and Them,” reporters Trey Kay and colleague Loretta Williams reported on concerns among farmers, commercial firms, public agencies, weed scientists, home gardeners, environmental groups, and others. The report was produced in collaboration with the Food and Environmental Reporting Network.

You can listen to this 51-minute investigative report here.


How consumers in France and Israel view natural food

Here are several findings and recommendations from this recent article in the Review of Agricultural, Food and Environmental Studies:

    • Generalized distrust appeared in both countries towards certain industrial manufacturing processes and/or farming techniques
    • Perceptions of natural food differed between the countries and seemed both socially and culturally embedded.
    • Findings show the advantage of pursuing research in the sociology of food that does not compartmentalize means of production on the one hand and consumer practices on the other, but rather reconnects the two.

You can read the article here.


Organizations in hiding

That is the title of a recent article in the Electronic Journal of Communication. It involved outsider perceptions of the appropriateness, effectiveness, and motivations for organizations to conceal themselves. Researchers focused on a broad spectrum of 14 positively- to negatively- valenced organizations. An environmental advocacy organization, Earth First, was among them.

You can read the article here.


A food waste reduction campaign worked (kind of)

We have added to the ACDC collection a 2019 journal article that reported results of a food waste reduction campaign in a university dining room.  Authors tested how such a campaign may influence wastage in an all-you-can-eat setting.

“Results revealed that the campaign had a modest, though insignificant, impact on waste behavior, but there were changes in students’ beliefs related to food waste, which may be an important first step in achieving behavioral change.”

You can review the abstract of this article in the journal Resources, Conservation and Recycling here.

Contact us at acdc@library.illinois.edu for counsel about gaining full-text access.


Preserving 11 million feet of newsreels

Newsreels enthralled movie goers until the 1960s and may be long gone – except for their amazing content and historical value. We learned recently that 11 million feet of them now live at the University of South Carolina in its Moving Image Research Collections. Donated by 20th Century Fox in the early 1980s, it is the largest set of newsreels freely available online, with thousands of stories meticulously organized and described.

We mention this resource because it represents potentials for researchers interested in the historical aspects of communications related to agriculture, rural life, and rural-urban interactions.  Newsreels covered all kinds of topics – serious and light, anywhere in the world, rural and urban. Scholars estimate that at least 40 million people in the United States and more than 200 million people worldwide watched newsreels each week in the late 1930s.

You can learn more in the 2019 Humanities article which we identified recently.

Also, you can visit the Moving Image website at: https://www.sc.edu/about/offices_and_divisions/university_libraries/browse/mirc/index.php


“The magic of wireless”

When we read these words today, our thoughts turn to wireless internet, cell phones, and such. However, this title appeared in the May 6, 1922, issue of the Canadian Countryman. It referred to the latest in scientific invention at that time: the radio.

“With it it is possible to sit at home and listen to concerts given hundreds of miles away. For some weeks past one of the daily papers in Toronto has been holding radio concerts which have been enjoyed by people all over the Province of Ontario. The value to farmers of the radio telephone cannot be estimated at the present time, but that it will be great cannot be doubted.”  Indeed.

You can read this article here. It is in the “Reflections – Farm and Food History” section of Farms.com.


Communicator events approaching

July 27-31, 2019
“Global connections in America’s heartland.” International Federation of Agricultural Journalists (IFAJ) Congress and Ag Media Summit (AMS) in Minneapolis, Minnesota USA. Joint meeting of AAEA – The Agricultural Communicators Network, Livestock Publications Council (LPC), the Connectiv Agri Media Committee, and the national Agricultural Communicators of Tomorrow (ACT). Combined AMS and IFAJ information available at www.ifaj2019.org

September 12-13, 2019
“Extending horizons: Extension’s role in climate, rural industry, and community challenges. Conference of the Australasia Pacific Extension Network (APEN) in Darwin, Northern Territory, Australia. Information: https://aapevents.eventsair.com/2019apen/

October 9-13, 2019
“Headwaters to the Plains.” Annual conference of the Society of Environmental Journalists at Fort Collins, Colorado USA.

Information: http://www.sej.org/initiatives/sej-annual-conferences/AC2019-main

October 11-12, 2019
Seminar of the Swiss Agricultural Journalists at the guest house Probstenberg, located between the municipalities of Welschenrohr and Seehof, Switzerland.

Information: https://www.agrarjournalisten.ch/seminar

November 11-13, 2019
Professional development conference of the International Food Wine and Travel Writers Association at Santa Fe, New Mexico, USA.

Information: www.ifwtwa.org/2019-ifwtwa-conference

November 13-15, 2019
“Farm broadcasting: the engine that drives agriculture.” Convention of the National Association of Farm Broadcasting (NAFB) in Kansas City, Missouri.

Information: https://nafb.com/events/nafb-convention

December 6-7, 2019
“Pluralistic extension for enhancing farmers’ income through reaching the unreached.” National seminar organized by Mahatma Phule Krishi Vidyapeeth and Maharashtra Society of Extension Education at Maharashtra, India.

Information: http://www.inseeworld.com/seminars.htm


Giving thought to the human side

We close this issue of ACDC News with advice expressed in 1986 by Rosalyn Rappaport, an extension worker in the Caribbean and Africa:

“It pays to give as much thought to the human setting of the information as to its technical content.”


Best wishes and good searching

Please pass along your reactions, suggestions, and ideas. Feel free to invite our help as you search for information. Don’t forget to follow us on Twitter @ACDCUIUC. And please suggest (or send) agricultural communications documents we might add to this unique and valuable international collection. We welcome them in hard copy (sent to Ag Comm Documentation Center, Room 510, 1101 S. Goodwin Avenue, Urbana, IL 61801) or in electronic format sent to acdc@library.illinois.edu

ACDC News – Issue 19-06

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Eight new research reports in JAC

We are pleased to call attention to eight recent articles published in the Journal of Applied Communications:

  • “ACE and research: the difference between ‘mere press agent’ and strategic partner” by Elizabeth North
  • “The effect of emphasizing credibility elements and the role of source gender on perceptions of source credibility” by Ariana Bigham, Courtney Meyers, Nan Li, and Erica Irlbeck
  • “Exploring beyond the obvious: social skills needed for agricultural communication baccalaureate graduates” by Arthur Leal, Ricky W. Telg, Joy N. Rumble, Nichole LaMee Perez Stedman, and Debbie M. Treise
  • “Should livestock images provide historical reference or modern reality? An examination of the influence of livestock communication on attitude” by Joy N. Rumble, Tiffany M. Rogers-Randolph, and Emily B. Buck
  • “Can anyone hear us? An exploration of echo chambers at a Land Grant university” by Taylor K. Ruth, Joy N. Rumble, Sebastian Galindo-Gonzalez, Hannah S. Carter, and Kevin M. Folta
  • “Diffusion of innovations and public communication campaigns: An examination of the 4R Nutrient Stewardship Program” by Henry Seeger and Robyn S. Wilson
  • “Crowdsourcing change: An analysis of Twitter discourse on food waste and reduction strategies” by Annie R. Specht and Emily B. Buck
  • “Printing and mailing for the brand: an exploratory qualitative study seeking to understand internal branding and marketing within university and extension communications services” by Anissa Zagonel, Lauri M. Baker, and Audrey E. H. King

You can read them here.


Paper – a natural fit for the circular economy model

“Paper is a natural fit for the circular economy model,” Canadian woodland owner Phil Riebel observed in a brief commentary we have added from Two Sides North America. He was referring to an emerging economy in which reuse, refurbishment, recycling, and end-of-life disposal of a product factor into manufacturing design. Reasons cited:

  • “Paper is one of the truly sustainable products.”
  • It is highly recyclable – “recycled more than any other commodity in the solid waste stream…”
  • “Much of the energy used for papermaking is renewable. Roughly two-thirds of the energy used by North American pulp and paper mills is self-generated using renewable biomass in combination with heat and power (CHP) systems.”
  • “The paper industry uses more renewable energy than any other industrial sector.”

You can read the commentary here.


Why experienced farmers may not re-engage with extension

A recent research project in Tasmania, Australia, shed light on why experienced farmers may not be inclined to re-engage with extension services. Findings of research among dairy farmers revealed a belief that extension activities were targeted to less experienced, young farmers. The belief resulted in farmers perceiving extension activities as “confronting.”

Authors also observed that “the theory of planned behaviour can be qualitatively applied to better understand farmer decision making, in this instance with respect to their initial and continued engagement with extension.”

You can learn more about this 2019 Journal of Agricultural Education and Extension article here.


What online consumers consider most important when they shop for fresh produce

Here are some key findings of recent research involving a stratified random sampling of 1,205 online shoppers in the southern region of the U. S.:

  • 81% said they believe that food labels are very important to them
  • Among those, “grown locally” is the most important label for 49% of them
  • Those for whom “organic” is the most important label constitute 15%
  • 30% consider the combination of “organic” and “grown locally” to be the most important to them

You can read this 2018 conference research paper here.


Update on how U. S. adults view genetic engineering of animals

Findings of a 2018 national survey from the Pew Research Center help identify public attitudes about use of animal biotechnology. The survey examined five different scenarios:

  • Findings showed most support for use of the technology with mosquitoes to prevent spread of disease by limiting their reproduction (70% said it is appropriate) and animals to grow organs/tissues for humans needing a transplant (57%). Both reflected public interest in benefiting human health.
  • Other uses of animal biotechnology were found less acceptable to the public. They included creation of more nutritious meat for human consumption (43% said it is appropriate), restoring an extinct animal species from a closely-related species (32%), and genetically engineering aquarium fish to glow (21%).

You can read the full report here.


Communicator events approaching

June 24-27, 2019
“Communications connections.” Annual conference of the Association for Communication Excellence in Agriculture, Natural Resources, and Life and Human Sciences (ACE) in San Antonio, Texas USA. Information:  https://aceweb.org/ACE-conferences

July 27-31, 2019
“Global connections in America’s heartland.” International Federation of Agricultural Journalists (IFAJ) Congress and Ag Media Summit (AMS) in Minneapolis, Minnesota USA. Joint meeting of AAEA – The Agricultural Communicators Network, Livestock Publications Council (LPC), the Connectiv Agri Media Committee, and the national Agricultural Communicators of Tomorrow (ACT). Combined AMS and IFAJ information available at www.ifaj2019.org

September 12-13, 2019
“Extending horizons: Extension’s role in climate, rural industry, and community challenges. Conference of the Australasia Pacific Extension Network (APEN) in Darwin, Northern Territory, Australia. Information: https://aapevents.eventsair.com/2019apen/


Together, we shall

We close this issue of ACDC News with a saying in Nigeria. We found it recently in a report from Vic de Jesus, 1981 president of Communicators for Agricultural and Rural Development (CARD) in the Philippines.

“I’ll carry you behind my back and you carry me, and together we shall ascend the mountain.”


Best wishes and good searching

Please pass along your reactions, suggestions, and ideas. Feel free to invite our help as you search for information. Don’t forget to follow us on Twitter @ACDCUIUC. And please suggest (or send) agricultural communications documents we might add to this unique and valuable international collection. We welcome them in hard copy (sent to Ag Comm Documentation Center, Room 510, 1101 S. Goodwin Avenue, Urbana, IL 61801) or in electronic format sent to acdc@library.illinois.edu

ACDC News – Issue 19-05

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Unintended consequences of rural images on social media

We have added to ACDC a case report of unintended public kickback from rural images posted on social media during the historic drought in Australia during 2018.  A Queensland grazier and her friend used Facebook to build public awareness of the devastating effects on livestock and to invite feed for calves. They got a wide range of responses – from sympathy and offers of help to a complaint about animal abuse, plus an investigation by Biosecurity Queensland for concerns over animal welfare.

You can read the story here.


New case study on the economic value of agricultural education and promotion

It involves an economic analysis by the Florida Tomato Committee to evaluate the effectiveness of education and promotion expenditures.  Here are some of the findings:

  • Average sales revenue increased by $7.52 for each dollar spent on these programs during 2011-2016
  • “Accordingly, it appears the promotion and education program has added value to producers of Florida fresh market tomatoes”
  • “Other U.S. producers also gain from this program with spillover effects increasing the value of all U.S. grown tomatoes by $0.69 for each dollar spent on promotion by Florida growers”

You can read this 2019 conference paper here.


A food-oriented short course features learner-driven teaching

We have added to the ACDC collection a book chapter describing a two-week course that featured an engaging, learner-driven approach to teaching about food.  It did so within the context of social justice and sustainability, introduced through use of charrette and knowledge mapping. Author Michael Berger wrote a case report entitled, “Learner-driven teaching for international, global problems” for the 2019 book entitled Promoting biodiversity in food systems (CRC Press, Boca Raton, Florida).

Check with us at acdc@library.illinois.edu for help in gaining access if the book is not available to you.


Communicating to exploit agricultural laborers

Cluster effects and intense inter-employer communication can be effective drivers of underpayment of agricultural laborers, according to findings reported recently in the Journal of Cleaner Production.  Researchers observed in a vegetable region of Spain that markets dominated by few employers are more prone to exploiting workers. Also, “labour exploitation flourishes in communities of like-minded companies that do not care about mainstream norms.” They observed that this pattern can thrive if the cluster is homogeneous in terms of wage level and if it is isolated from law-abiding employers.

You can review the abstract of this article in the Journal of Cleaner Production here. Contact us at acdc@library.illinois.edu for help in seeking full-text access.


Beer marketers battle over anti-corn syrup commercials

This is a case example of complexities in advertising about food and health. The Yahoo News report introduces a law suit by beer giant MillerCoors about competitive television advertising claims used in the complex world of differences between corn syrup and high-fructose corn syrup.

You can read it here.


Who suffers from weak linkages between agricultural research and extension?

A 2018 journal article about the adoption of soybean production in India reported evidence that adoption of improved technologies did improve crop yield and farm profit. However, the benefits largely remained confined to economically well-off, better-informed, educated large farmers. Authors called for strengthening linkages between research and extension systems.

This theme sounds familiar to many who have offered that advice in many settings and across the generations, based on research and experience. For example, the ACDC collection contains hundreds of documents about this specific challenge and goal. Such documents in the collection trace back nearly 70 years- and our collection is by no means complete. The goal remains, around the world.

You can read this research report here.


Communicator events approaching

May 24-28, 2019
“Communication beyond boundaries.” 69th annual conference of the International Communication Association (ICA) in Washington, D.C. USA. Information: https://www.icahdq.org/page/2019Conference

June 2-5, 2019
“Southern accent on fresh ideas.” Annual institute of the Cooperative Communicators Association (CCA) in Savannah, Georgia USA. Information: https://www.communicators.coop

June 24-27, 2019
“Communications connections.” Annual conference of the Association for Communication Excellence in Agriculture, Natural Resources, and Life and Human Sciences (ACE) in San Antonio, Texas USA. Information:https://aceweb.org/ACE-conferences

July 27-31, 2019
“Global connections in America’s heartland.” International Federation of Agricultural Journalists (IFAJ) Congress and Ag Media Summit (AMS) in Minneapolis, Minnesota USA. Joint meeting of AAEA – The Agricultural Communicators Network, Livestock Publications Council (LPC), the Connectiv Agri Media Committee, and the national Agricultural Communicators of Tomorrow (ACT). Combined AMS and IFAJ information available at www.ifaj2019.org

September 12-13, 2019
“Extending horizons: Extension’s role in climate, rural industry, and community challenges. Conference of the Australasia Pacific Extension Network (APEN) in Darwin, Northern Territory, Australia. Information: https://aapevents.eventsair.com/2019aapen


Another plea for tight, clear writing

We close this issue of ACDC News with a follow-up to last month’s thought about scrubbing academic jargon. It was attributed to Mark Twain in a recent book, Writing successful science proposals (2018).

“I didn’t have time to write an article, so I wrote a book.”


Best wishes and good searching

Please pass along your reactions, suggestions, and ideas. Feel free to invite our help as you search for information. Don’t forget to follow us on Twitter @ACDCUIUC. And please suggest (or send) agricultural communications documents we might add to this unique and valuable international collection. We welcome them in hard copy (sent to Ag Comm Documentation Center, Room 510, 1101 S. Goodwin Avenue, Urbana, IL 61801) or in electronic format sent to acdc@library.illinois.edu

ACDC News – Issue 19-04

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Case report: Attempted editing of a scientific report on sea level rise

The ACDC collection now contains two 2018 articles about removal of the word “anthropogenic” (term for people’s impact on nature) from the draft executive summary of a sea level rise report for the U. S. National Park Service. The scientific report is intended to inform officials and the public about how to protect park resources and visitors from climate change. Evidence of editing was reported during early April in a Reveal News article from the Center for Investigative Reporting. The final Park Service report was released during mid-May with the removed wording restored.

You can read both articles here and here.


Australians extend their highest honor to a rural journalist

We join many others, globally, in congratulating Australian rural journalist Leigh Radford for being awarded the Order of Australia Medal in 2019 Australia Day honours. The Order of Australia is the pre-eminent way Australians recognize the achievements and services of their fellow citizens. Across 30 years he served through the Australian Broadcasting Corporation (ABC) in regional and national rural programming. As reporter, presenter, then national head of rural and national programs with ABC Regional, he touched lives across the nation, and beyond.

Leigh Radford

A news item from the Australian Council of Agricultural Journalists explained that, as head, “he led a team of over 300…and was responsible for iconic radio programs like ‘The Country Hour’ and TV productions like ‘Landline” and “Backroads” and groundbreaking programs like “Heywire’.” Associates in Rural Media South Australia also emphasized his numerous voluntary services and a “lasting legacy that will improve the productivity, profitability and welfare of rural communities across the Australian continent.”

 

 


How consumers in 10 countries view print and paper in a digital world

We recently added a 16-page report of findings from a 2017 survey involving more than 10,700 consumers in 10 countries.  It was commissioned by Two Sides North America, a non-profit organization interested in paper as a renewable resource and was conducted by Toluna, an independent research firm.  It assessed consumer preferences, attitudes, and trust, as related to print and paper. A few of the findings:

  • Respondents said they prefer to read the printed versions of books (72%), magazines (72%), and newspapers (55%) over digital options
  • 53% said they are concerned that overuse of electronic devices could be damaging their health
  • 51% said they trust stories read in newspapers (51%) more than in stories found in social media (24%)

You can read this research report here.


Five barriers to engaging non-operating landowners in conservation practices on rented farmland

Efforts to promote conservation programs often focus on farm operators. A 2019 research report in the journal Land Use Policy looked at landowners not directly involved in farm operations. Interviews with 40 non-operating landowners, farm operators, farm managers, and extension personnel in three Midwest U. S. states identified five categories of barriers to adoption of conservation practices. They included:

  • Cash rent lease terms
  • Rental market dynamics
  • Information deficits and asymmetries
  • Cognitive and interpersonal factors
  • Financial motivations of non-operating landowners

Authors suggested that agricultural conservation programs could readily apply these insights.

You can read the article here.


Progress in preserving historic audio-visual resources

We are delighted to report progress in preserving and digitizing some classic Extension communications films (circa 1960) and a 1969 audio tape about the future of farm broadcasting in the U. S. They came into ACDC as part of the Francis C. Byrnes Collection – and in risky condition. Thanks to the Preservation, Conservation, and Digitization Services of the University of Illinois Library, they are now cleaned and rehoused in archival-quality cases and canisters. Most films are from the influential National Project in Agricultural Communications (NPAC). Sample topics involve:

  • Missed signals in Extension (seven situations)
  • Changing the change agent
  • The changing scene
  • Fidelity of report

The audio tape, “Future of farm broadcasting,” features a panel discussion at the 1969 National Association of Farm Broadcasters (NAFB) convention in Chicago, Illinois.

Contact us at acdc@library.illinois.edu if you are interested in reviewing these historical resources.


Communicator events approaching

April 30-May 2, 2019
2019 Annual meeting of the Turf and Ornamental Communicators Association (TOCA) in Charlotte, North Carolina USA. Information: https://www.toca.org/2019-toca-annual-meeting

May 24-28, 2019
“Communication beyond boundaries.” 69th annual conference of the International Communication Association (ICA) in Washington, D.C. USA. Information: https://www.icahdq.org/page/2019Conference

June 2-5, 2019
“Southern accent on fresh ideas.” Annual institute of the Cooperative Communicators Association (CCA) in Savannah, Georgia USA. Information: https://www.communicators.coop

June 24-27, 2019
“Communications connections.” Annual conference of the Association for Communication Excellence in Agriculture, Natural Resources, and Life and Human Sciences (ACE) in San Antonio, Texas USA. Information:  https://aceweb.org/ACE-conferences

July 27-31, 2019
“Global connections in America’s heartland.” International Federation of Agricultural Journalists (IFAJ) Congress and Ag Media Summit (AMS) in Minneapolis, Minnesota USA. Joint meeting of AAEA – The Agricultural Communicators Network, Livestock Publications Council (LPC), the Connectiv Agri Media Committee, and the national Agricultural Communicators of Tomorrow (ACT). Combined AMS and IFAJ information available at www.ifaj2019.org

September 12-13, 2019
“Extending horizons: Extension’s role in climate, rural industry, and community challenges. Conference of the Australasia Pacific Extension Network (APEN) in Darwin, Northern Territory, Australia. Information: https://aapevents.eventsair.com/2019apen/


Scrubbing the academic jargon

We close this issue of ACDC News with a thought we read recently in correspondence. It does not address agricultural communications, in particular – but does it sound familiar?

“I often wonder how many communications practitioners are out there who might benefit from academic research once it has been scrubbed of its 50-cent words and academic jargon.”

We in ACDC read thousands of academic research reports and often ponder the same thing. They heighten our respect for communicators who translate, distill, simplify, and otherwise make the findings of science understandable to diverse audiences.


Best wishes and good searching

We have a new email! You can now reach us at acdc@library.illinois.edu

Please pass along your reactions, suggestions, and ideas. Feel free to invite our help as you search for information. Don’t forget to follow us on Twitter @ACDCUIUC. And please suggest (or send) agricultural communications documents we might add to this unique and valuable international collection. We welcome them in hard copy (sent to Ag Comm Documentation Center, Room 510, 1101 S. Goodwin Avenue, Urbana, IL 61801) or in electronic format sent to acdc@library.illinois.edu

ACDC News – Issue 19-03

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Do agricultural knowledge transfer services add profit for farmers?

Yes, according to recent findings in Ireland. Results reported early this year in the Journal of Agricultural Education and Extension showed that farmer clients using such services gained a 12.3% benefit to their margin per hectare during the recession period 2008-2014.

Authors also cited evidence revealing the importance of considering the ratio of clients per adviser. Farmers’ margins per hectare declined by 0.2% for each additional client assigned to the adviser.

You can learn more about this research report here.


What customers value about farmers’ markets: insights from hashtags

A 2018 article in the International Food and Agribusiness Management Review examined experiences of farmers’ market customers through their self-expression on social networks. Researchers at the Czech University of Life Sciences analyzed contributions to the Instagram social network based on the #farmersmarket hashtag during a single day. Six major linked hashtags were identified: #Organic, #Fresh, #Food, #Local, #Vegan, and #Healthy.

Authors noted that results of this study provide insights into consumer values and behaviors in the farmers’ market context and will be of practical use for future marketing and management.

You can read the article here.


Comparing rural-urban trust of individual news organizations in the U.S.

A new national poll for Columbia Journalism Review provides insight about the extent to which rural and urban U. S. citizens personally trust or distrust reporting from 26 news organizations. The graphic reveals considerable similarity, along with some trust gaps.

You can view results of this rural-urban comparison here, plus other aspects of public confidence in specific news organizations here.


Community newspapers need to explain “How we work”

Al Cross, director of the Institute for Rural Journalism and Community Issues at the University of Kentucky, offered a foundational commentary which we are adding to the ACDC collection. His thoughts apply beyond rural journalism, but clearly encompass it.

Here are some of the thoughts he emphasized:

  • Many community newspapers are disengaging from their audiences…at a time when they need to be more engaged than ever. There’s a war on journalism, and it’s not just being waged in Washington, D.C.
  • At a time when Americans are more dubious than ever about sources of information, newspapers remain the primary finders of fact. But for some reason they have been bashful about making that their brand, or even thinking of themselves as having a brand.
  • If I were running a newspaper today, its home page would have a button labeled “How We Work.” … It would take readers to a page explaining the paper’s purpose and the ways it tries to achieve it. Shorter versions of it would run in print every day, usually on the editorial page. [It] would start by explaining the different forms of information media, to help readers understand the different and special roles that newspapers play in our society, and the challenges they face.”
  • We need more letters from the editor, not just statements of editorial principle, but explanations of how and why we do certain things. If we demand transparency from officials and institutions, we must practice it ourselves.

You can read the commentary here.


Get a century-spanning view of community journalism in the U. S.

A comprehensive monologue by Prof. Beth Garfrerick came recently into the ACDC collection, with our expression of appreciation to the author. The title is: “Twentieth Century weekly community newspapers in the United States.”

More than 100 pages in length, it provides an expansive history that specifically focuses on the rural and small-town community weekly – “warts and all.” She took a deep interest in rural and small-town weekly newspapers as a master’s and doctoral student at the University of Alabama, as well as a former small-town daily newspaper reporter.

Check with us at docctr@library.illinos.edu if you are interested in gaining full-text access to it.


Photography – a language that doesn’t need translation

An inspiring story in NeimanReports (February 2019) highlights the remarkable career of a Brazilian photographer, Sebastião Salgado. Author Anthony Feinstein emphasized Salgado’s unity of effort, spending years on single themes such as Migrations (refugees suffering in times of conflict), Workers (exploited in toxic power plays) and Genesis (healing the land).  His photographs reveal depth of field and thought, along with richness of image “with their subtle gradations of shadow and light.”

You can read this article here, including a sample of Salgado’s photography.


Communicator events approaching

April 1-4, 2019
“Linking, innovating, motivation, and engaging for resilient agricultural systems”. Conference of the Association for International Agricultural and Extension Educators (AIAEE) in Port-of-Spain, Trinidad & Tobago. Information: https://aiaee2019trinidad.wordpress.com

April 10-12, 2019
“Onward Upward.” 2019 Agri-Marketing Conference sponsored by the National Agri-Marketing Association (NAMA) in Kansas City, Missouri USA. Information: https://nama.org/amc/2019-amc-home

June 2-5, 2019
“Southern accent on fresh ideas.” Annual institute of the Cooperative Communicators Association (CCA) in Savannah, Georgia USA. Information: https://www.communicators.coop

June 24-27, 2019
Annual conference of the Association for Communication Excellence in Agriculture, Natural Resources, and Life and Human Sciences (ACE) in San Antonio, Texas. Information: https://aceweb.org/ACE-conferences


A reminder about local news media

We close this issue of ACDC News with a thought expressed in 2001 by British MP Austin Mitchell when addressing the UK Newspaper Society: “A local newspaper is a community talking to itself. Without that the community would be deaf and dumb.”


Best wishes and good searching

Please pass along your reactions, suggestions, and ideas. Feel free to invite our help as you search for information. Don’t forget to follow us on Twitter @ACDCUIUC. And please suggest (or send) agricultural communications documents we might add to this unique and valuable international collection. We welcome them in hard copy (sent to Ag Comm Documentation Center, Room 510, 1101 S. Goodwin Avenue, Urbana, IL 61801) or in electronic format sent to docctr@library.illinois.edu

 

ACDC News – Issue 19-02

When food recalls hit, tell news media what affected consumers can do

That message came through in an analysis of how selected national media covered 72 food recall notifications from the U. S. Food and Drug Administration during 2013.  Researchers concluded: “From a practical standpoint, instructional messaging appears to be the most effective strategy in a food recall crisis if the company seeks to gain positive newspaper coverage. This may sound intuitive at first, but many companies are not currently practicing it.”

This analysis was reported in the September 2017 issue of Newspaper Research Journal.

You can read the article here.


What interests consumers most about modern pig production: Environmental impact? Safety? Health? Animal welfare? 

Findings from recent research among consumers in both Germany and Poland indicated that they assigned greater importance to health and safety aspects than to animal welfare and environmental impact. Authors of the 2018 Meat Science article observed that currently the major distinction in the pork market is between conventional and organic production, which is mainly defined in terms of environmental and animal welfare benefits. “The present data therefore suggest that there can be room in the market for a different positioning based on production characteristics related to health and safety.”

You can read the article here.


Food Trendtellers Council sees trends to watch during 2019

A team of Trendtellers from Tyson Foods has identified six food trends to watch during the year ahead:

  • Personalized foods to promote health and beauty
  • Transparent food takes hold
  • More protein in more forms
  • The power of smart technology and food
  • Food as a form of self-expression
  • Fusion of global cuisines at home

Communicators have a central role in all of them.  You can learn more here


Some bees aren’t so busy as foragers (and communicators)

We often refer to being busy as a bee. However, the ACDC collection now contains a research report in Animal Behavior revealing “extreme inter-individual variation and plasticity in honeybee foraging activity levels. Automated monitoring showed that foraging activity is flexibly adjusted during a bee’s lifetime. “…elitism does not involve a distinct subclass of foragers.”

You can learn more about the article here.


Welcoming Emily and Courtney

We welcome two new graduate assistants in the Agricultural Communications Documentation Center.

Emily Benton is a first-year graduate student in Library and Information Sciences at the iSchool. She has a BA in History and a minor in Plant Sciences from the University of Missouri. In addition to her work with the ACDC, Emily has been working as a quarter-time graduate assistant in Funk ACES Library since August.  Emily has had internships in the Missouri State Archives and the Supreme Court of Missouri Library.

Courtney Smith is a first-year graduate student in Library and Information Sciences at the iSchool.  Her focus lies in special collections and archives, and she is especially interested in metadata, outreach, and providing better access to users.  In addition to her work with the ACDC, Courtney holds graduate hourly appointments in the Library’s Illinois History and Lincoln Collections and in the Facilities Information Resources Department of the University Facilities and Services unit.  She has undergraduate degrees in Political Science and History from Michigan State University. While at MSU, Courtney was a student assistant in several library units, including Special Collections and Area Studies.”


Communicator events approaching

March 4, 2019

Deadline for poster abstracts for the 2019 Association for Communication Excellence in Agriculture, Natural Resources, and Life and Human Sciences (ACE) annual meeting, June 22-27, in San Antonio, Texas USA.

Information:  Prof. Jessica Holt jaholt@uga.edu

April 1-4, 2019

“Linking, innovating, motivation, and engaging for resilient agricultural systems”

Conference of the Association for International Agricultural and Extension Educators (AIAEE) in Port-of-Spain, Trinidad & Tobago.

Information: https://aiaee2019trinidad.wordpress.com

April 10-12, 2019

“Onward Upward.” 2019 Agri-Marketing Conference sponsored by the National Agri-Marketing Association (NAMA) in Kansas City, Missouri USA.

Information: https://nama.org/amc/2019-amc-home

June 2-5, 2019

“Southern accent on fresh ideas.” Annual institute of the Cooperative Communicators Association (CCA) in Savannah, Georgia USA.

Information: https://www.communicators.coop

 


Oh, the agony of broken grammar rules

Thanks to Walter Rockwood who in 1984 alerted his fellow agricultural writers/editors to this irreverent view of a sacred grammar rule – that sentences should not end with prepositions.

He explained, “The rule was invented by critic and poet John Dryden (1621-1700), who reasoned the preposito in Latin means something that ‘comes before’ and that prepositions in Latin never appear at the end of a sentence.” A contrarian view is that the rules of Latin do not always apply to English and that some great writers have ended sentences with prepositions.

He cited an agricultural writing example: “Soil – good to be born on, good to live on, good to die for, and good to be buried in. “(Bacon)


Best wishes and good searching

Please pass along your reactions, suggestions, and ideas. Feel free to invite our help as you search for information. Don’t forget to follow us on Twitter @ACDCUIUC. And please suggest (or send) agricultural communications documents we might add to this unique and valuable international collection. We welcome them in hard copy (sent to Ag Comm Documentation Center, Room 510, 1101 S. Goodwin Avenue, Urbana, IL 61801) or in electronic format sent to docctr@library.illinois.edu

Click Here for a printer-friendly PDF of this newsletter.

ACDC News – Issue 19-01

Finding local and creative angles to cover climate change

We recently added to the ACDC collection an article in Nieman Reports about journalists struggling to cover climate change. Author Michael Blanding described it as a complex and abstract topic that often lacks a news hook and defies most journalistic conventions. The article explains how some news outlets are bringing innovation, urgency, and new audiences to stories about climate change.

“While climate change is perhaps the global issue, it is an intensely local one, with effects from climate change felt on agriculture and business from coastal cities to rural farms.” He suggested looking for stories close to home.

You can read the article here.


“Half of the world is now online” So…

That news last month from a United Nations agency, the International Telecommunication Union, stirs hopes and challenges for rural residents and interests.

The world’s internet population is estimated to have reached 51.2 percent or 3.9 billion people. Also, almost half of all households in the world have access to a computer, such as a desktop, laptop, or tablet.

“Despite the progress, more needs to be done to help the rest of the world’s population go online,” said ITU Secretary General Houlin Zhao. “Far too many people around the world are still waiting to reap the benefits of the digital economy.” Many resources in ACDC confirm that view. They show long experience with new information technologies from which rural residents receive a limited and delayed share of benefits those technologies offer.

You can read a report of this news here.


 How some early U.S. rural families gained IT – with barbed wire

Recently we added to ACDC an Atlas Obscura article entitled, “Barbed wire telephone lines brought isolated homesteaders together.” Focusing on the American frontier of the 1800s, author Natasha Frost described how creative homesteaders teamed up two new inventions – the telephone and barbed wire used to fence their properties.

“Together, in an amazing display of rural ingenuity, they connected isolated households to their rural neighbors and the rest of the world. Left to telephone companies and their bottom lines, farm people would not have had telecommunications at all. Building lines was expensive, and hardly worth the effort in sparsely populated areas.”

You can read this revealing piece of history here. Information challenges and the ingenuity of rural people continue, globally.


 20 ideas for enlivening local community food systems

A team of University of Kentucky researchers recently examined them in developing a Local Food Vitality Index. Their report in the Journal of Food Distribution Research spanned three categories:

  • Market channels (8), ranging from cooperative grocery stores and farmers’ markets to school programs, food trucks and ethnic markets
  • Community activities (6), ranging from food festivals and food education to community gardens and on-farm events
  • Local food promotion activities (6), ranging from local food labels and brewery promotion to competitive pricing, government support, and private investment

You can read “Local food vitality index: measuring consumer attitudes toward food system attributes” here.


 Replacing the term “GMO”

We are preserving in ACDC a news reminder to farmers about the U.S. Department of Agriculture decision to replace the term “GMO” with “Bioengineered Food (BE)” a year from now: January 2020.  “This ensures clear information and labeling consistency for consumers about the ingredients in their food,” said Agriculture Secretary Sonny Perdue.

We are adding the term to our ACDC citations. It now accompanies an evolution of terms such as “genetic engineering,” “biotechnology,” “genetic modification,” and “GMO.” We suggest you use all of them when you search the ACDC collection online for such information. The ACDC collection now contains nearly 2,200 documents (1957-2018) involving communications about biotechnology related to food and agriculture.

You can read the recent farm media report here.


Thanks to Hailley Shaw

 

Our thanks and best wishes go with Hailley Shaw, ACDC graduate assistant since last May. She has completed her master’s degree in library and information science here at the University of Illinois. Within ACDC, she has, for example, identified and gathered documents for the collection, managed the website, processed several contributed collections, responded to requests, and pitched in on other projects. And all in good spirit.  Thinking back on her experience, Hailley observes:

“I have thoroughly enjoyed my experience at ACDC. I have learned so much about how intertwined agricultural communications is with other fields – from politics and education to ethics, business, sociology, etc. I hope to continue to grow my librarian career, focusing on archiving and designing library spaces. My time at the Center has been invaluable as it has provided me with experiences furthering my interest in how informational content pairs with physical objects.”


 Communicator events approaching

February 11, 2019
Deadline for full paper proposals for the 2019 Association for Communication Excellence in Agriculture, Natural Resources, and Life and Human Sciences (ACE) annual meeting, June 22-27, in San Antonio, Texas USA.
Information: Prof. Jessica Holt jaholt@uga.edu

March 4, 2019
Deadline for poster abstracts for the 2019 Association for Communication Excellence in Agriculture, Natural Resources, and Life and Human Sciences (ACE) annual meeting, June 22-27, in San Antonio, Texas USA.
Information:  Prof. Jessica Holt jaholt@uga.edu

April 1-4, 2019
“Linking, innovating, motivation, and engaging for resilient agricultural systems”
Conference of the Association for International Agricultural and Extension Educators (AIAEE) in Port-of-Spain, Trinidad & Tobago.
Information: https://aiaee2019trinidad.wordpress.com

April 10-12, 2019
“Soar onward and upward.” 2019 Agri-Marketing Conference sponsored by the National Agri-Marketing Association (NAMA) in Kansas City, Missouri USA.
Information: https://nama.org/amc/2019-amc-home

June 2-5, 2019
“Southern accent on fresh ideas.” Annual institute of the Cooperative Communicators Association (CCA) in Savannah, Georgia USA.
Information: https://www.communicators.coop


Why can’t we communicate with plants?

In closing this issue of ACDC News we ponder a thought from Jeanne Carstensen, writing in the Modern Farmer magazine.

“…maybe the reason plants don’t respond to our desperate attempts to communicate is simple: they don’t need humans. ‘They can survive without us,’ [biologist Daniel] Chamovitz says, ‘But we wouldn’t survive a minute without them.’”


Best wishes and good searching

Please pass along your reactions, suggestions, and ideas. Feel free to invite our help as you search for information. Don’t forget to follow us on Twitter @ACDCUIUC. And please suggest (or send) agricultural communications documents we might add to this unique and valuable international collection. We welcome them in hard copy (sent to Ag Comm Documentation Center, Room 510, 1101 S. Goodwin Avenue, Urbana, IL 61801) or in electronic format sent to docctr@library.illinois.edu

Click Here for a printer-friendly PDF of this newsletter.

ACDC News – Issue 18-12

Information threats to precision agriculture

“Adoption of information security standards for precision agriculture is important for the future success of precision agriculture,” according to a 2018 report we have added from the U. S. Department of Homeland Security. This 25-page report, prepared through the 2018 Public-Private Analytic Exchange Program, examined three areas of threat:

  • Threats to confidentiality
  • Threats to integrity
  • Threats to availability

It sketched hypothetical threat scenarios, offered best practices to protect and build resilience into precision agriculture, and highlighted four areas of needed research.

You can read the report here.


Rural women, globally, call for more
training and public awareness

Findings of a new survey among 4,160 rural women on five continents showed that they are overwhelmingly proud to be in agriculture, feel widespread gender discrimination, and want more training in technology.  Corteva Agriscience released the findings in celebration of the recent International Day of Rural Women.

What do they believe will help remove the obstacles?

  • More training in technology (cited by 80%)
  • More academic education (79%)
  • More support – legal and otherwise – to overcome discrimination (76%)
  • More public awareness of the success women are achieving in agriculture (75%)
  • More public awareness of gender discrimination in agriculture (74%)

You can read a two-page summary here via AgriMarketing Weekly.


A 2018 framework for farmer adoption
of best management practices (BMP)

Researchers reporting in Sustainability reviewed findings of BMP adoption studies from developed and developing countries since 2008.  They used findings to suggest a conceptual framework for BMP adoption decisions. It emphasizes the importance of scale, the tailoring or targeting of information and incentives, and the importance of expected farm profits. Findings included the need to incorporate social norms and uncertainty into decision making.

Authors also suggested that more research is needed on uses of social media and market recognition approaches (such as certificate schemes and consumer labeling) to influence BMP adoption.

You can read the journal article here.


A new treasure trove of
agricultural communications research

ACDC online visitors now can identify 118 newly-entered resources about agricultural communications research from 1981-1995. Those were years of dramatic change in twin revolutions involving communications and agriculture.  Thanks to Prof. Eric Abbott (faculty emeritus, Iowa State University) for contributing his NCR-90 materials. ACDC Graduate Assistant Hailley Shaw took the lead in processing it, finishing last month.

NCR-90 was the communications committee of agricultural experiment stations in the North Central Region of the U.S. It served as an early and valuable network for university communicators to share research. For example, they reported results of dissertation and thesis research, audience surveys, new-media trials, communications campaigns, and program evaluations. Many of the reported studies were never published. They were valuable at the time – and they remain valuable in documenting the development of communications related to agriculture, food, and the environment during that remarkable period.  By providing a forum for sharing research and evaluation, they also helped build the platform for agricultural communications research today.

Read more here.


Looking for online resources about freelance writing?

Janet Rodekohr (faculty emerita, University of Georgia) sifted, sorted, and identified eight online resources for freelance writing during her presentation at the Association for Communication Excellence (ACE) Conference at Scottsdale, Arizona, during August.

You can review this annotated list here.


Welcome to our new ACDC student assistant

Our “welcome” mat is out this month for Kimberly Villanueva, who is joining ACDC as new student assistant. Kimberly is a junior in the College of Agricultural, Consumer, and Environmental Sciences (ACES) with a major in agricultural communications and concentration in journalism.  She is passionate about urban agriculture, food insecurity, and communicating about those topics. Her previous work experience includes database maintenance at the Spurlock Museum on the University of Illinois campus and environmental research at the Field Museum in Chicago.


Communicator events approaching

February 11, 2019
Deadline for full paper proposals for the 2019 Association for Communication Excellence in Agriculture, Natural Resources, and Life and Human Sciences (ACE) annual meeting, June 22-27, in San Antonio, Texas USA.
Information: Prof. Jessica Holt jaholt@uga.edu

March 4, 2019
Deadline for poster abstracts for the 2019 Association for Communication Excellence in Agriculture, Natural Resources, and Life and Human Sciences (ACE) annual meeting, June 22-27, in San Antonio, Texas USA.
Information:  Prof. Jessica Holt jaholt@uga.edu

April 1-4, 2019
“Linking, innovating, motivation, and engaging for resilient agricultural systems”
Conference of the Association for International Agricultural and Extension Educators (AIAEE) in Port-of-Spain, Trinidad & Tobago.
Information: https://aiaee2019trinidad.wordpress.com

April 10-12, 2019
“Soar onward and upward.” 2019 Agri-Marketing Conference sponsored by the National Agri-Marketing Association (NAMA) in Kansas City, Missouri USA.
Information: https://nama.org/amc/2019-amc-home

June 2-5, 2019
“Southern accent on fresh ideas.” Annual institute of the Cooperative Communicators Association (CCA) in Savannah, Georgia USA.
Information: https://www.communicators.coop


A tip for preserving sharp memories

We close this issue of ACDC News with advice offered in a 1966 book, The Cooperative Extension Service. The author was encouraging local extension agents to keep a record of their visits with those they serve.

“The faintest ink is better than the fondest memory.”


Holiday wishes and good searching

Please pass along your reactions, suggestions and ideas. Feel free to invite our help as you search for information. Don’t forget to follow us on Twitter @ACDCUIUC. And please suggest (or send) agricultural communications documents we might add to this unique and valuable collection. We welcome them in hard copy (sent to Ag Comm Documentation Center, Room 510, 1101 S. Goodwin Avenue, Urbana, IL 61801) or in electronic format sent to docctr@library.illinois.edu

Click Here for a printer-friendly PDF of this newsletter.

ACDC News – Issue 18-11

At a season of harvest and thanksgiving in this part of the world,
those of us in the Agricultural Communications Documentation Center extend special thanks to you. We appreciate your interest and support in gathering, preserving, and making available what is known about communications related to agriculture. This has been a bountiful year for that mission of ACDC, and you have been important to it.

We share another bit of the resource bounty with you in this “harvest” issue.


“Reporting the untold stories of rural India”

A 2017 article of that title by Shalini Singh in Nieman Reports described how the People’s Archive of Rural India (PARI) is revealing the lives and labors of the country’s poorest, most marginalized populations.  Palagummi Sainath, former rural affairs editor of The Hindi newspaper, founded PARI in 2014 as a non-profit organization to document the everyday lives of everyday people in rural India.

Singh explained that, with PARI, Sainath seeks to bridge the urban-rural divide. “In the archival sense, we’ve been called ‘a Smithsonian from below.’”

You can read the article here.


How well do scientists understand climate and GM food safety these days?

Many Americans are skeptical of scientific understanding of causes of climate change and the health effects of eating genetically modified (GM) foods. A December 2017 survey report from the Pew Research Center indicated that only 28% of the national sample felt that scientists understand the causes of climate change very well; 40% fairly well; 32% not too well or not well at all.

Only 19% felt that scientists understand the health effects of eating GM foods; 44% fairly well; 35% not too well or not well at all.

You can read this survey report here.


 New Eugene A. Kroupa Collection

It is a pleasure to report that ACDC is home to a new collection contributed recently by a former agricultural journalism faculty member at the University of Wisconsin.  Dr. Eugene A. Kroupa later established one of the state’s first full-service marketing research firms. His contributed materials take varied formats and range in date from 1967-1990.

They involve topics such as farmers’ information sources and their use and understanding of agricultural marketing information. Materials also feature new directions in agricultural communications curricula, professionalism of agricultural communicators, and use of focus groups in agricultural marketing communications. They include nine agricultural journalism master’s degree theses.

You can identify his contributions by visiting “Contributed Collections” on the ACDC website and scrolling down to “The Eugene A. Kroupa Collection”.


Imagine – local news media run by volunteers (for decades)

An example came to our attention recently from Almena, Kansas, a rural town of about 400 residents. Residents lost their century-old newspaper in 1990. Townspeople decided to establish a new semi-monthly, Prairie Dog Press, with news and columns authored by local residents (mostly seniors) and produced by an all-volunteer staff.  Friendships, dedication, the community’s appreciation, and an editor’s leadership help account for more than 20 years of community service. Folks at Kansas State University provided advisory help.

You can read this case study here, as reported in the Newspaper Research Journal.


Topics range widely in recent symposium papers

You can see a sampling of today’s variety in these abstracts of 12 research papers. They were presented at a National Agricultural Communications Symposium in Florida earlier this year. Thanks to Prof. Quisto Settle, we are including contact information you can use if you want to invite full-text access.

“A quantitative assessment of possession rituals and engagement in Pinterest: an examination of the agriculture industry”  Contact: Cassie Wandersee at wande@ksu.edu

“Case study integration in the undergraduate classroom: can we enhance willingness to communicate?”  Contact: Jessica L. Harsh at jessica.harsh@abac.edu

“Creating relevancy in scientific information: an analysis of the impact of motivational salience and involvement on visual attention”

Contact: Laura Fischer at lmfischer@uky.edu

“Eye tracking: a biometric tool for measuring baseline visual literacy in agricultural communications students” Contact: Tobin Redwine at tredwine@tamu.edu

“Florida consumers’ latitudes of acceptance, rejection, and noncommitment of genetically modified food information” Contact: Taylor Ruth at tkruth@illinois.edu

“Framing agricultural use of antibiotics and antimicrobial resistance in the United States” Contact: Anna Warner at anna.j.warner@ufl.edu

“Lights, cameras, and agricultural documentaries: influence on opinion change”

Contact: Brooke Beam at beam.49@buckeyemail.osu.edu

“Measuring the influence of Twitter-based crisis communications strategies on brand reputation via experimental design” Contact: Courtney Boman-Billey at courtneyboman@mail.missouri.edu

“Piloting participatory arts-based methods for exploring Indonesians’ experiences in a U.S. biotechnology training program” Contact: Jamie Loizzo at jloizzo@ufl.edu

“Survey says: what data means when it comes to perceptions about agriculture”

Contact: Levy Randolph at lrandolph2008@ufl.edu

“The food factor: relating brand exposure to behavior intention”

Contact:  Quisto Settle at qsettle@okstate.edu

“What’s the beef about Facebook? A content analysis of junior cattle breed association engagement on Facebook” Contact: Courtney Gibson at courtney.d.gibson@ttu.edu


Communicator events approaching

February 11, 2019
Deadline for full paper proposals for the 2019 Association for Communication Excellence in Agriculture, Natural Resources, and Life and Human Sciences (ACE) annual meeting, June 22-27, in San Antonio, Texas.
Information: https://docs.google.com/document/d/1_RSVI-UTlaECBqJC9rTDvsBCJusihkA2bEWU5JCpx20/edit?usp=sharing

March 4, 2019
Deadline for poster abstracts for the 2019 Association for Communication Excellence in Agriculture, Natural Resources, and Life and Human Sciences (ACE) annual meeting, June 22-27, in San Antonio, Texas.
Information:  https://docs.google.com/document/d/1NTHUZMz-D5ERFCJeZKDS28NMkRnORFKmdWlAzG3ATnY/edit?usp=sharing

April 1-4, 2019
“Linking, innovating, motivation, and engaging for resilient agricultural systems”
Conference of the Association for International Agricultural and Extension Educators (AIAEE) in Port-of-Spain, Trinidad & Tobago.
Information: https://aiaee2019trinidad.wordpress.com


Looking for the mass human

We close this issue of ACDC News with a thought about the distinction between informing and communicating. Dr. Richard Nostbakken, communications director for the International Development Research Council, expressed it at a seminar in Kenya during 1990:

“There are what we call mass media, but there are few mass audiences, and I think no one has ever met a mass man.”


Best wishes and good searching

Please pass along your reactions, suggestions and ideas. Feel free to invite our help as you search for information. Don’t forget to follow us on Twitter @ACDCUIUC. And please suggest (or send) agricultural communications documents we might add to this unique and valuable collection. We welcome them in hard copy (sent to Ag Comm Documentation Center, Room 510, 1101 S. Goodwin Avenue, Urbana, IL 61801) or in electronic format sent to docctr@library.illinois.edu

Click Here for a printer-friendly PDF of this newsletter.

 

 

 

 

 

ACDC News – Issue 18-10

How agricultural researchers are using social media data

A recent article in Agronomy Journal identified some applications and limitations of social media data for agricultural research and extension. Canadian researcher Samuel Zipper cited examples such as:

  • Using Twitter to map state-level corn and soy planting progress
  • Mapping emerging agricultural issues (e.g., weather, crops, pests)
  • Guiding Extension and Outreach directly to affected areas
  • Identifying factors that contribute to decisions about replanting
  • Tracking the evolution of farmer sentiment over time

You can read the article here.


On shifting focus of the Big Data Revolution for Development (D4D)

We have added to the ACDC collection a recent analysis that took a political economy perspective on the big data revolution for development. Researcher Laura Mann of the London School of Economics and Political Science reported her findings in the first 2018 issue of the journal, Development and Change.

This analysis led her to suggest moving away from the current focus on humanitarianism towards economic development, “considering the opportunities for African citizens to benefit from their data as a source of revenue, knowledge and power.”

You can read the article here.


New milestone for IFAJ

Congratulations to the International Federation of Agricultural Journalists for reaching a 50-member milestone. IFAJ guilds in eight new countries became members during the recent IFAJ Congress: Cameroon, Georgia, Liberia, Nigeria, Senegal, The Gambia, and the United Republic of Tanzania.

You can learn more about IFAJ and plans for further growth here.


Update about online grocery shopping

A 2018 national survey among U.S. adults indicated that about 35% bought groceries online. Lincoln Park Strategies conducted the survey sponsored by the International Food Information Council Foundation, Washington, D.C.  Among other findings:

  • Snacks, cereals, and canned goods were the most popular grocery items purchased online.
  • Respondents were more likely to read grocery nutrition information when shopping in a store versus online.
  • Cost of items/delivery (53%) and time it takes (39%) were the biggest barriers to online grocery shopping.

You can read the summary report here.


 A 2018 framework for farmer adoption of best management practices (BMP)

Researchers reporting in Sustainability reviewed findings of BMP adoption studies from developed and developing countries since 2008.  They used findings to suggest a conceptual framework for BMP adoption decisions. It emphasizes the importance of scale, the tailoring or targeting of information and incentives, and the importance of expected farm profits. Findings included the need to incorporate social norms and uncertainty into decision making.

Authors also suggested that more research is needed on uses of social media and market recognition approaches (such as certificate schemes and consumer labeling) to influence BMP adoption.

You can read the journal article here.


Communicator events approaching

October 19, 2018
Deadline for (a) research and innovative posters and (b) proposals for professional development sessions at the 2019 National Agricultural Communications Symposium, Montgomery, Alabama, January 31 – February 6, 2019.
Information: https://sites.google.com/a/extension.org/saasagcomm/home

November 7-9, 2018
“75 Years Strong.” Annual convention of the National Association of Farm Broadcasting (NAFB), Kansas City, Missouri.  Information:  http://nafb.com


Primary purpose of the press

We close this issue of ACDC News with a thought from former U. S. President Warren G. Harding. He was differentiating between the purposes of education and propaganda.

“I cannot but feel that the primary purpose of the press, as a social institution, is the opening of men’s minds rather than the closing of them.”


Best wishes and good searching

Please pass along your reactions, suggestions and ideas. Feel free to invite our help as you search for information. Don’t forget to follow us on Twitter @ACDCUIUC. And please suggest (or send) agricultural communications documents we might add to this unique and valuable collection. We welcome them in hard copy (sent to Ag Comm Documentation Center, Room 510, 1101 S. Goodwin Avenue, Urbana, IL 61801) or in electronic format sent to docctr@library.illinois.edu

Click Here for a printer-friendly PDF of this newsletter.