Nature and Popular Culture Final

News Hole
the amount of space available for a particular news or TV spot relative to other demand for the same space
Event-Driven Coverage
environmental news often features dramatic events (nuclear power plant accidents, forest fires, etc)
the ability of a news story to attract readers or viewers; contains visual elements– the ability to be “seen”
information that is accurate, without reporter bias
include information from all sides of an issues, particularly in cases of controversy
Media Political Economy
influence of ownership and economic interests on the news content of media sources; to report of not to report on environmental issues, especially those that may involve owners?
decisions made about what is covered i the news and what is not covered.
potential issues: not all environmental issues are immediately “visible”; not all journalists have training in communicating environmental/scientific issues
Issue-attention Cycle
1. Pre-problem
2. Alarmed discovery and euphoric enthusiasm
3. Realizing the cost of significant progress
4. Gradual decline of intense public interest
5. Post-problem
*Think of Kony 2012 campaign
Agenda Setting
how news reporting can influence what people think about; tells us not what to think, but what to think about
Cultivation Analysis
repeated exposure to a set of messages will lead to agreement among the audience with the opinions expressed in the messages; has a gradual, rather than immediate effect
“Cultivation in reverse”
lack of environmental images in TV leads viewers to marginalize the importance of environmental issues
emphasizes some aspect of an issue, and not others; all information is framed, whether intentional or not; media discourse influences how individuals construct meaning about issues; “sets a particular train of thought in motion”; sometimes only effective is relevant to audiences prior beliefs; can bring diverse audiences together
Digital Omnivores
accessing news on multiple devices
Traditional Media
Top-down (editors, journalists); reporters often have expertise and experience; one-to-many; passive reader; expensive; somewhat slow
New Media
bottom-up (all); bloggers may not have experience/expertise; relies on readership for quality control; many-to-many; readers can converse; cheap; fast
Increasingly “red” and ‘blue” news
people getting news from a source that favors the opinions they already have (Alterman)
The “Green Blogosphere”
provide environmental authority (scientists vs. journalists); aplify and popularize environmental issues; provide more depth for print stories; serve as an “environmental eyewitness”
Social Media and the Environment
the use of web-based technologies and mobile applications for personal interactions enable the creating and sharing of user-generated content
Community-based Social Marketing (CBSM)
the application of commercial marketing tools to influence the voluntary behavior of a target population to improve their personal well being and that of the societies that they belong to; the focus is on changing/encouraging voluntary behavior rather than selling goods or services; utilizes psychological research as a basis for planning sustainable behavior interventions
CBSM Steps
1. Uncover barriers to behavior
2. Select behavior to promote
3. Design program to overcome barrier and pilot test
4. Implement and evaluate
Downstream Social Marketing
focus on the symptoms (encouraging obese people to work out more)
Upstream Social Marketing
focuses on the root causes (availability and affordability of healthy food)
Descriptive Social Norms
beliefs about what is actually done by most others in one’s social group; we register what others are doing, and then act based on this (example, many Americans DO litter)
Injunctive Social Norms
peoples beliefs about what ought to be done (what is approved of; motivates us by promising social rewards and punishments (example, American should not litter)
When Social Norms Backfire
to solve this, align descriptive and injunctive norms
The act of persuading or arguing in support of a specific cause, policy, idea, or set of values (public education, campaigns, boycotts, direct action, etc).
Critical Rhetoric
questioning or denunciation of a behavior, policy, societal value, or ideology
“Mind Bombs”
Simple images that “explode in people’s minds” to create new awareness of an issue
Advocacy Campaign
not just about question or criticizing policy, but uses strategy to reach a discrete outcome or specific purpose; sponsored by non-institutional sources; usually seek to change external conditions or make systemic change
Traditional Campaigns
usually institutionally-sponsored; usually seek to change individuals attitudes or behaviors
long-term vision or value
specific action, event, or decision that moves a group closer to the goal
Primary Audience
decision-maker who has the authority to act or implement the objectives of the campaign
Secondary Audiences
segments of the public who are crucial in holding the primary audience accountable for reaching the campaign’s objectives
Campaign Strategies
source of influence or leverage to persuade a primary decision maker to act on a campaign’s objective
Campaign Tactics
concrete acts that carry out or implement the broader strategy
Gladwell Article
fundamental differences between “in person” activism and social media activism; strong ties vs. weak ties; degree of commitment; degree of involved risk; networks vs. hierarchies
Attitude-behavior Gap
the disconnection between one’s beliefs or attitudes, on the one hand, and their behaviors, on the other (pro-env. attitudes don’t always equal pro-env. behaviors)
Green Marketing
used to construct an environmental identity; associates corporations’ products, services, identity, etc. with environmental values and images; purposes include product advertising, image enhancement, and image repair
Corporate Advocacy Campaigns
used to affect public opinion, laws, etc.
Aggressive Strategies
to intimidate or discredit critics
Product Advertising (sales)
marketing products as being of high quality with minimal impact on the environment; use nature as a backdrop, product, and outcome
(Green Marketing technique)
largely unregulated; voluntary on the part of the corporation; guidelines are fuzzy; wide range of meanings
Image Enhancement
working to promote a positive, environmental image of a corporation
(Green Marketing Technique)
Image Repair
to repair or recove a corporation’s credibility, especially after an environmental crisis or accident (think of BP and the oil spill)
(Green Marketing technique)
“The Gospel of Consumption”
we can convince people that, however much they have, it’s not enough
misleading information that is disseminated by an organization so as to present an environmentally friendly public image
7 Sins of Greenwashing
1. Hidden Trade-off (suggesting product is “green” base on a single env. attribute)
2. No proof (claim isn’t easily substantiated y accompanying informationor by a reliable third party)
3. Vagueness (poorly defined and its measning is likely to be misunderstood by consumers)
4. Irrelevance (a statement that may be true but is unimportant and unhelpful for consumers seeking “geen” products)
5. Lesser of two evils (claims are true but risk distracting from the greater negative impacts)
6. Fibbing (environmental claims that are simply false)
7. Worshiping false labels (gives the impression of a third party endorsement, even if one doesn’t exist
Risk Society
as a society becomes increasingly industrialized risks tend to: be large scaled; affect collective groups; have the potential to harm large groups; have far reaching effects; disproportionately effect some other than others; are less clear about who is responsible
Risk Communication
any public or private communication that informs individuals about the existence, nature, form, severity, or acceptability of risks; broad or narrow (Plough & Krimsky)
Risk Assessment
evaluation of the degree of harm/danger from a condition (example: chemical exposure)
1. Identify hazard
2. Define the pathways of human exposure to it
3. Determine human’s response to different levels of exposure
4. Characterize the risk
Optimistic Bias
the propensity to see oneself as less susceptible to a given risk
Technical Rationality
scientific method; hypothetico-deductive reasoning; quantifiable data; technical expertise; “official” agencies; risk can be studied independent of context, popular culture
Cultural Rationality
personal, familiar, and social concerns; folk wisdom; importance of an individual’s place in their community, social values of community; importance of how risk is communicated; risk must be understood within a context; involves public in the risk assesment
Voices of the “side effects” (Beck)
individuals who suffer the side effects of the “risk society”
sources that can bring authority/credibility to news about risk (EPA spokesperson, scientist, etc)
Technical Risk Assessment
apply technology to reduce variability in the physical environment (example: a dam controls water levels, minimizing the risk of flooding); has high potential environmental impact
Structural Risk Assessment
modify the physical structure or social setting in which the action takes place (a rule that prevents people from entering a hazardous area); low potential environmental impact
Cognitive Risk Assessment
transfer information to public audiences to modify their beliefs, attitudes, values, or motivations (a ranger explain to hikers how to prepare for bad weather); low potential environmental impact
Sunshine Laws
require open meetings of government bodies; “shine light of public scrutiny” on their work
Freedom of Information act (FOIA)
any person has the right to see the records of any executive branch agency; tightened control after 9/11, but Obama administration has increased transparency
Pros and Cons of Public Hearings
Benefits: many diverse representatives of the public sphere
Cons: crowded rooms; lack of child care; fear of public speaking
Public Meetings as Rituals
an empty procedure, having no concrete value or meaning
Characteristics: formalism (sets an activity apart from common practice, not an everyday occurrence); traditionalism (draws on real or imagined past practices and customs); invariance (timeless in nature, repeated in exact manners)
Redefinition of Environment
to include more than just “natural” or “wild” places, but where we live, work, play, and learn
Principles of Environmental Justice
recognize/reduce disproportionate burdens of environmental harms on poor/minority communities; opportunities for those affected to be involved in in decision making; environmentally healthy and economically sustainable communities
Indecorous Voice
the symbolic framing by some public officials of the voices of others as inappropriate or unqualified for speaking in official forums and their belief that ordinary people may be too emotional or ignorant to testify; assumptions about what is/is not appropriate for certain audiences to say or do
Crisis Discipline
research in the context of urgency and uncertainty; need to make decisions with imperfect knowledge; considerable implications for policy/management; founded on functional and ethical tenets