Are We Still Behind The Eight-Ball?

Community Standing Committee who’s sole purpose is to get the truth about the industry and its practices into the public arena

Taking the tone of past articles that I have written for this website into consideration, you’d be in a fairly safe spot if you believe that I am on a little bit of a crusade to get veganism and animal rights advocates to adopt a different approach in the way that they promote their message.

I believe that as a movement we need to become more proactive with the promotion of the vegan message, and use the resources that we have more effectively, namely social media.

As I have written in previous posts[1], our opponent – animal agriculture, is taking this issue very seriously, having dedicated time to it during recent industry forums. The recent Australian Lot Feeders Association’s BeefEx 2012 conference on the Gold Coast is another example of the level of attention they are paying to it.

Thanks in no part to the presentation by RSPCA Australia’s CEO, Heather Neil, which I have discussed previously[2], animal agriculture now knows that they need to get serious about social media.

Did you know that ALFA has a Community Standing Committee who’s sole purpose is to get the truth about the industry and its practices into the public arena?[3]

Gerry Gannon, master of ceremonies, and Malcolm Foster, Beef industry consultant ALFA president, both gave presentations relating to social media. The common theme of both presentations was the need for the feedlot sector to ensure that when members of the public search for information about lot feeding, that information from industry sources is among the first items they find.[4]

To this end, the movement as a whole needs to create an effective social media front to dispel the half truths that the industry will supposedly educate the public on.

I still believe that the most effective way to do this is via a blog.

Sure Twitter and Facebook have their purpose, though they are really only useful for campaign promotion and keeping the momentum going with people who may already be agitated by a particular issue.

When the dust settles from that campaign or the media moves their focus to the Kardashians or whatever celebrity pregnancy there is only blogs will be left.

Starting a blog isn’t really that hard, and it doesn’t have to cost you anything either. There are a number of free services around that will host a blog for you. To make things even better, you don’t even need to use your own name if you don’t want to or are not able to.

Your blog could be about anything you want it to be, from your journey through veganism, to animal rights information, to even have a rant about other blogs. The list is endless.

Take this one for example. Whilst it doesn’t really have the warm and fuzzy focus the other blogs do in the past 30 days people have found the site via the following terms.
* teys brother slaughter
* are we losing animal cruelty battle
* how many slaughterhouses are in australia
* cattle trains qld slaughterhouse
* beef cattle welfare challenge

How you get found depends on the words that you use in your post, and how often google crawls your site. Write it for those reading it, telling them how great it is being vegan, and that they don’t need to believe the industry propaganda and you will get found.

As Malcolm Foster says in the article mentioned, lot feeders shouldn’t leave it up to the industry groups to protect their online presence, it is up to the individual lot feeders too. The same applies to us as well, don’t leave it up to the groups or established blogs to promote veganism, we all need to take responsibility for getting the message out there.

Who knows, one day your blog about your own journey to and with veganism may just be enough for someone else to do the same.

1:Will We Achieve Tomorrow’s Goals By Following Yesterday’s Practices?

2: Now I Am Really Confused

3: BeefEx: Feedlots tackle social media (with video) – News
Retrieved 17 Oct 2012

4: ibid

What are your thoughts?