On August 21, for the first time in forty years, 500 million people across the United States can witness a spectacular total solar eclipse. Known as the All American Eclipse, this extraordinary event is expected to attract visitors from around the world.
Our client, celebrated astronomer and eclipse expert Andrew Fraknoi, is part of the Eclipse Task Force that’s helping government officials prepare for extreme gridlock and necessary porta-potties, water, and food supplies. In addition, he recently helped persuade Google and the Moore Foundation to donate 2 million eclipse glasses to public libraries across the United States.
His latest book, When the Sun Goes Dark, is a fun, beautifully illustrated guide that helps families teach their children about the eclipse, and was recently featured on Space.com. In a fascinating interview, he stressed the importance of training “intermediary educators,” or members of the public who can go on to teach other members of the public, in making scientific knowledge more widespread:
“We’ve spent quite a bit of time over our careers in astronomy education training intermediaries,” Fraknoi said. “We’ve always thought about who exactly it is that does education and how we can get to [them].”
It’s important to reach grandparents and other informal educators because, according to Fraknoi, they have resources available to them, such as time, to learn about the science. “When the Sun Goes Dark” offers examples of ways to explain solar eclipse science, which informal educators can then use themselves to teach family and friends, Fraknoi said.
He goes on to explain that the upcoming eclipse will provide the perfect opportunity to get young astronomers started on a lifetime of learning:
“If you want kids at an early age to be thinking about astronomy, the most accessible object in the night sky is, of course, the moon, [because] it is dramatic.”
Stargazers have a lot to look forward on August 21st. Be sure to check out Fraknoi’s free booklet describing the eclipse in everyday language.
My admiration for client Dr. Nwando Olayiwola increases every day! An award-winning physician and assistant professor at the University of California San Francisco, Dr. Olayiwola recently made headlines by saving the life of her Lyft driver:
As I watched and him becoming increasingly uncomfortable, miles away from my home in busy nighttime traffic on a large highway, I insisted that he pull over. I told him, “this is dangerous, you’re in pain. Pull over and let me get some help.”
By the time he pulled over onto the shoulder of the highway, he was clenching his right fist to his chest, writhing in pain, sweating, opening all of the windows and gasping for air. OH MY GOD, I thought to myself, this guy is having an MI (myocardial infarction/heart attack). As a doctor, I recognized the symptoms immediately and took swift action. But I had so many immediate thoughts! What if another passenger had not
recognized these symptoms? What if he was still driving on the road? What if we were not able to pull over?
Thanks to her quick thinking and expertise, Dr. Olayiwola correctly diagnosed the heart attack and kept the man calm and awake until emergency services arrived.
Her story was also picked up by ABC 7 News, and they were even able to interview the Lyft driver she saved.
As a matter of fact, Dr. Olayiwola’s Lyft driver was taking her home from a conference where she presented ways that technology can provide patients with faster access to specialty care. The connection was not lost on her! Dr. Olayiwola writes:
We spend a lot of time in primary care trying to get people to come into the “doctor’s office”, and this experience challenged me to really think….what is the “doctor’s office”? As this story unfolded today, I have found out so much more about my Lyft driver turned patient turned friend. He did indeed have cardiac problems and an abnormal heart rhythm, and had been having chest pain for a few weeks, which he did not address because, as an immigrant from the Middle East with a wife and young child, he needed to work and support his family, he had poor communication from his doctor and some specialty care fell through the cracks, and he had a limited health plan that didn’t cover much anyway.
He worked day in and out to provide for his family, and, frankly, the “doctor’s office” was right there, in his car, where he needed it most. Reflecting on my experience at HIMSS and the intersection of healthcare and technology, with compassion at the core, I really wonder, what do we need to be doing in healthcare to truly make it authentically patient-centered, meet people where they are, and allow for incredible advances in healthcare and technology to impact people like my Lyft driver? Could we be using Lyft to save lives? Could Lyft now become the “doctor’s office” that people really need? Could this marriage between healthcare and tech be more fruitful than it is?
It’s an amazing story, and I encourage everyone to read Dr. Olayiwola’s full account of the lifesaving Lyft drive over at her blog.
Are you an indie or traditionally published author looking for a publicist? Carney & Associates specializes in traditional, digital and social media for authors, experts, products and services. Please contact Kathlene Carney for a free consultation to find out how our publicity services can contribute to your success.
Canada’s most-listened to radio show The Currentfeatured a fascinating interview with Paul D. Blanc, M.D. today. Hosted by Anna Maria Tremonti, one of Canada’s most trusted journalists, The Current airs weekday mornings across their country over the Canadian Broadcasting Corp. (CBC), and is heard across the U.S. on SiriusXM.
Here’s an excerpt from their summary:
For well over a century, viscose rayon has been used to make clothes, tires, cellophane and everyday kitchen sponges.
It was hailed as a wondrous new product when first introduced — but what most people didn’t know is how deadly manufacturing rayon was for the factory workers.
It’s an industrial hazard whose egregious history ranks up there with asbestos, lead and mercury, according to author Paul Blanc.
In his new book Fake Silk: The Lethal History of Viscose Rayon (published by Yale University Press), Blanc, who is also a University of California professor of medicine, looks at how the manufacturing of viscose rayon served as a death sentence for many industry workers.
“There was a famous rubber factory where they put bars on the second story windows because so many workers had a tendency to jump out and kill themselves,” he tells The Current’s guest host Laura Lynch.
The key ingredient in the making of viscose is a molecule called carbon disulfide — a molecule so insidiously toxic that it devastated the minds and bodies of factory workers for more than a century.
Blanc says that occupational health and multinational corporations were aware of the dangers, but motivated by huge profits, failed to act.
“It was pretty easy to recognize the toxic effects early on because it makes workers insane. They found that about 30 per cent of the workers that they investigated showed signs of serious poisoning.”
But when it comes to the health impact on consumers, Blanc says there is none.
“Which is why … it’s gone on as long. Because when consumers aren’t affected, there’s not very much impetus for outrage if it’s just the poor people making it that suffer.”
Blanc says the fabric continues to this day to be “greenwashed” as an eco-friendly product.
“They omit entirely the fact that you can’t make the product without this toxic chemical. So it’s really a ‘greenwashing’ of the most diabolical sort.”
The goal was to spread the issues and ideas of Speak Out and OVER far and wide, to young and old, to increase awareness on the problems we confront today and to build on solutions that promote human rights — and the rights of all species on Earth. Whether one is working to mitigate the effects of climate change, end child marriage, protect endangered species, or advocating for women’s rights, the Global Population Speak Out helped strengthen activist voices — so all our interconnected concerns were heard.
Speak Out used social media, word-of-mouth and direct action to engage opinion-leaders, scientists and citizens of the world to respond creatively to environmental degradation. Speak Out emphasized elements of environmental protection that are rarely discussed: promoting human rights and human health as strong, indispensable solutions to preserving the rights of other species to exist and the health of the planet.
Speak Out organizers granted the free copies of OVER to people and organizations around the world who became ambassadors of information and inspiration, and promised personalized delivery to policymakers, opinion leaders, activists, allied organizations, and other audiences.
Many of the subjects in OVER are often discussed by environmentalists around the world: materialism, consumption, pollution, fossil fuels, carbon footprints, and more. But OVER and Speak Out purposefully joined two ever-present parts of environmentalism together: the number of the human species and our socio-economic behaviors. The book and the campaign intentionally moved beyond tired arguments that only one side of the equation matters and pictorially depicted the importance of both the number of people and the way people live.
The environmental book became an international media sensation and demand for the OVER books was beyond our wildest expectations – fueled by over 250 mass-media articles, reaching over 1 billion readers in 47 countries.
Examples of media sources that have reported on OVER include Washington Post (online and print), The Guardian (online and print), Buzzfeed.com, Salon.com, News.com (Australia), MSN Germany, Yahoo India, the China Daily News, BBC’s Impact, The Daily Mail Online (UK), Folha de S.Paulo (Brazil), San Francisco Chronicle and Mashable.com.
Ashton Kutcher, actor, producer and investor posted Speak Out content on his Facebook page which resulted in over 31,000 likes, 8,000+ shares and 1,300 comments.
While the media attention was robust, Speak Out organizers believed OVER could really effect change with the citizens and organizations speaking out and sharing their passions for saving the planet and creating a better world for all.
In Europe, ICLEI – Local Governments for Sustainability displayed OVER at an annual congress on climate change adaptation and resilience, thereby “allowing congress participants to peruse the magnificent photos during breaks and have the photos spur thoughts and conversations.”
A library consultant at a prominent international health organization reported that “Word is getting around!” The group was sharing OVER in their campus library, which resulted in requests for copies to be taken to country offices in Bangladesh, India, Kenya, Tanzania, Ghana, and Uganda.
An activist in Mexico told how he shared the message from OVER: “The book has a permanent place on the counter in our restaurant and many friends/customers/associates have already entered and began to read with awe.”
Down in New Zealand, a conservationist shared that “This will be a great opportunity for us to further promote the impact of increasing human populations on our fragile ecosystems and on the future of the planet’s biodiversity.”
Many of those who requested free copies of OVER were high school teachers and college professors. One teacher from the UK said “It is a really exciting and inspiring resource for future planning of activities within the Department, and in doing so, raising awareness with young people.”
Global Population Speak Out (Speak Out) united world-class scientists, academicians, opinion-leaders – and thousands of lay environmentalists and concerned citizens – to help bring international attention to the crises posed by overdevelopment and human population size and growth. Speak Out was jointly administered by Population Media Center and Population Institute.
In the U.S., more than 20 states have legalized marijuana for recreational use, and five states allow it for recreational use. President Obama recently said “You’re starting to see not just liberal Democrats, but also some very conservative Republicans recognize [prohibition] doesn’t make sense.”
So it’s only natural that as Merryjane.com recently reported, “Money is now pouring into the burgeoning industry and cannabis businesses are investing even more in public relations to burnish their image and get their brands noticed.”
“One of the drivers of the boom in cannabis PR agencies has been the high number of activists entering the industry,” the article explains. “And the questions…from reporters that are coming from the mainstream media come from a much more educated place; we’re no longer educating them on the basics of cannabis and why legalization makes sense.
“As more states legalize marijuana, there’s going to be more need for local press for things like dispensary openings and local license applications and those sorts of things. Like for instance in Colorado, obviously, there’s more local reporting going on, so I think eventually there will be more local cannabis PR offices.”
Marijuana is a booming business that will soon be sweeping the country. Cannabis is still federally illegal so a lot of media won’t accept advertisements, leaving public relations as the most effective way for the cannabis industry to gain brand awareness.
PR will play an essential role in introducing the public to the cannabis industry and transforming mainstream views. The challenge is to overcome negative stereotypes created by the most impressive campaign ever: Reefer Madness.
The four types of men who cheat on their partners;
How you got yourself into this situation;
Signs that a married man will actually leave his wife;
Making educated decisions about whether to stay or go;
How to manage the difficult emotions that come with this relationship;
Ways to develop a healthy, fulfilled life regardless of how the relationship turns out.
Dr. DePompo is articulate, charismatic, and excellent on television. This is one of many TV interviews we’ve booked for him as part of our comprehensive book publicity campaign for authors and experts. Please contact Kathlene Carney to discuss how Carney & Associates publicity services can help promote your psychology book or practice.
Our client Zoe Weil was recently interviewed on Sea Change Radio, a nationally syndicated weekly radio show and podcast hosted by the excellent Alex Wise. Sea Change Radio, which is broadcast to over 60 stations, interviews figures who advance the world’s “shift to social, environmental, and economic sustainability.” It’s an incredible program, and we’re honored to have booked many of our clients there over the years.
Here’s Sea Change’s description of their two-part interview with Zoe:
“What’s the purpose of schooling? Reading, writing and ‘rithmetic, right? Well, our guest today begs to differ. Zoe Weil, author and the founder of the Institute for Humane Education, argues that the obligation of education is to cultivate a generation of “solutionaries” – kind, just, and socially conscious people who will protect the environment and promote human rights. We talk about her new book, The World Becomes What We Teach, and touch upon educational equity issues like implicit bias, summer learning loss, the resurgence of school segregation, and how Common Core fits into her vision for meaningful change.”
Check out part one and part two of Zoe’s interviews online at Sea Change Radio. It’s a great listen!
Radio Ecoshock is an awesome, long-running environmental radio show that airs on more than 91 stations in the U.S. and Canada, plus podcasts and through their website which receives more than 31,000 downloads per month.
Alex Smith, the show’s outstanding host, interviewed our expert Alisha Graves last week. Alisha is co-founder of The OASIS Initiative: A project of University of California, Berkeley, an effort to forestall rapid population growth and extreme poverty in the Sahel region of Africa. Alisha also serves as Vice President of the Population Program at Venture Strategies for Health and Development, a California-based non-profit organization, where she oversees the “Rebirth of Population Awareness” initiative. And she is a research fellow for Project Drawdown, analyzing the potential contribution of family planning for reducing greenhouse gas emissions.
Our pitch had a provocative title, “Green Sex for Climate’s Sake,” and the show was equally intriguing. Here’s an excerpt from Alex’s description on his site:
“‘Green sex’ – Do it for the climate. We’ll find out what that means with Alisha Graves. The old saying about the circus: ‘There’s a sucker born every minute.’ But hundreds of new humans are born every minute, as the human population continues to multiply. Many will be Western-style super consumers, the ones who drain resources and fill the skies with greenhouse gases. If we can’t control that urge, a major climate disruption may do it for us.
“To hear some environmental groups tell it, all we have to do is install solar energy and drive electric cars – problem solved. But can we really tackle the climate issue without talking about population?
“Our instant mental defense is to tell ourselves it’s those billions of peasants ‘over there’ somewhere who are responsible for the population impact. What’s wrong with that idea? Think of it this way: if you decide not to have a child, you have done far more to reduce greenhouse gases than buying an electric car or installing solar panels. That is because every new consumer born is a heat engine.
“Sex is such a powerful urge. It can drive our lives even when our brains are barely involved, maybe especially when our brains are weak. Do you believe that rational debate can change sexual behavior? It’s interesting to discover that half the babies born in the United States were unintended. So fifty percent of the time, there was no conversation like “should we do this?” Meanwhile, states like Texas are making it harder and harder for a woman to access a safe and legal abortion. At times I’m sure we are going backward in population control, not forward.”
You or anyone can listen to or download just this 23 minute interview with Alisha Graves using these permanent links (in either CD Quality, or the faster loading but lower quality Lo-Fi)
I read a fascinating article by Joshua Benton on NiemanLab.org about how the Internet is pushing the American news business to New York and the coasts. “Rather than creating geographic diversity, digital news has pushed the industry into a few tight clusters. That has real impacts on the journalism we get.” Here are more highlights from his piece:
“Let’s start by thinking of the pre-web news business. Physical distribution of newspapers and over-the-air distribution of TV signals meant location was all-important for daily news. Journalistic talent was arrayed to match, with substantial newsrooms in every city.
“Digital changed that. Think of the most prominent digital-native news companies, like Vice Media, BuzzFeed, Business Insider, Gawker Media, Mashable, Vox Media — all of them are in New York or D.C. (Vice adds a sort of geographic diversity by being in Brooklyn instead of Manhattan, I suppose. But you could still visit a dozen of them without your Uber bill climbing too high.) There are smaller hubs in the Bay Area (for tech reporting), Los Angeles (all about video), and even Miami (for Spanish-language and Hispanic-targeting media), but the increase in concentration is unmistakable. Journalism jobs are leaving the middle of the country and heading for the coasts.
“This won’t come as a shock to anyone who’s studied cluster theory, the idea that industries naturally tend toward concentration in one or a few places — think autos in Detroit, oil in Houston, or music in Nashville. Small geographic advantages start to snowball; companies that want to work with the big players naturally want to be near them, and talented people know that, if they want to do interesting work, they’d best go where the innovation is happening.
“So if the news business is becoming even more centered in New York, what sort of impacts would that have on our news? For one thing, you’d expect it to make the media more liberal — culturally and politically. Journalists don’t like it when conservatives point out that they, as a group, lean farther left than the country as a whole. But you don’t need to be a conspiracy theorist to believe it: College-educated liberal arts grads who live in cities — a group most American journalists fit into — are more liberal as a group than the American median. And those who live in New York or San Francisco are going to be more liberal as a group than those in Cincinnati or Knoxville.
“America is a big, highly distributed place. Our democracy is structured around cities and counties and congressional districts and states. Our media used to be too. As an industry, it’s our responsibility to make sure we don’t become too myopically focused on a few square blocks in Midtown Manhattan.”
In another example of old media vs. new media, NPR is discouraging its member stations from promoting NPR podcasts and the new NPR One app.
Nieman Lab broke the story last week. In a nutshell, “NPR can’t promote NPR One — the lauded, loved app that is basically the future of NPR — to what is literally the group of people that would be most interested in it, NPR radio listeners. NPR is investing substantially in developing podcasts — but it isn’t allowed to tell radio listeners where to find them or how they can listen to them.
“NPR is an entity based in Washington, D.C.; ‘public radio’ includes it, but also other radio distributors like PRI, APM, and PRX and, most importantly, the over 900 NPR member stations that dot the landscape. And these players don’t always have the same interests. A local station’s greatest asset is its connection to the local community, symbolized by the broadcast tower that, uniquely, lets it reach radio listeners in cars and homes. NPR’s greatest asset is the value its audience sees in its content and brand, which might be delivered via a radio signal, a website, a mobile app, or a podcast.
“This tension — between the local stations who pay the largest share of NPR’s bills and the network that sees a future beyond terrestrial radio signals — is basically everywhere you look in public radio. (NPR’s board is majority station managers, which is at the root of it all.) And it’s the right frame through which to view this new “ethics” policy from NPR. Here’s Chris Turpin, NPR’s vice president for news programming and operations:
As podcasts grow in number and popularity we are talking about them more often in our news programs. We are also fielding more and more questions from news staff and Member stations about our policies for referring to podcasts on air. To that end, we want to establish some common standards, especially for language in back announces. Our hope is to establish basic principles that are easy to understand and allow plenty of flexibility for creativity. These guidelines apply to all podcasts, whether produced by NPR or by other entities.
— No Call to Action: We won’t tell people to actively download a podcast or where to find them. No mentions of npr.org, iTunes, Stitcher, NPR One, etc.
GOOD: “That’s Linda Holmes of NPR’s Pop Culture Happy Hour podcast and our blogger on the same subject and Bob Mondello, NPR’s film critic. Thanks so much.”
BAD: “OK, everyone. You can download Alt.Latino from iTunes and, of course, via the NPR One app.”
— Informational, not Promotional: When referring to podcasts, and the people who host, produce, or contribute to them, we will mention the name of the podcast but not in a way that explicitly endorses it. References should not specifically promote the content of the podcast (e.g., “This week, the Politics Podcast team digs into delegate math.”) If you feel a podcast title needs explaining (e.g. Hidden Brain), some additional language can be added (e.g., “That’s Shankar Vedantam, he hosts a podcast that explores the unseen patterns of human behavior. It’s called, Hidden Brain”). Just to repeat: Be creative in how you back announce podcasts, but please avoid outright promotion.
— No NPR One: For now, NPR One will not be promoted on the air.”