Using Digital Media to Communicate Fisheries Science

Tuesday, September 10, 2013: 10:20 AM
Fulton (Statehouse Convention Center)
Daniel Isaak , Boise Aquatic Sciences Laboratory, US Forest Service, Boise, ID
Joanna Whittier , Department of Fisheries and Wildlife Sciences, University of Missouri, Columbia, MO
Julie Defilippi , Atlantic Coastal Cooperative Statistics Program, Arlington, VA
The digital revolution is transforming the speed and accuracy of information development and transmission. Original research that previously required months or years to reach interested audiences is now transmitted globally at virtually no cost in a few seconds. Complimentary digital media like email chat, blogs, YouTube videos, Twitter and Facebook are used to highlight and reinforce important aspects of the research and spread this information more broadly than traditional specialists to include students, private citizens, management biologists, politicians, consultants, and non-governmental organizations. Outputs from research models are increasingly mapped to real-world coordinates using global positioning systems, Google Earth, and geographical information systems to enable direct and site-specific application of new science in fisheries. Ubiquitous and easily transmitted information results in spontaneous development of social networks as individuals interested in particular topics begin to communicate. Although communications in these networks often consists of “noise,” it also creates a meritocracy of thought wherein good ideas and information are adopted and applied rapidly. Some of these concepts are illustrated using personal experiences from our research regarding climate change effects on fish populations, developing conservation priorities, reaching out to fellow fisheries professionals and the need to disseminate information to diverse audiences across broad areas.