I just watched a new four-minute, animated film titled "A Pig's Tail" created by the Humane Society of the U.S. (HSUS) targeted to reach 7- to 10-year-old children. Given the target audience, it isn’t as over the top as we’ve come to expect from HSUS, but it effectively attacks modern agriculture nonetheless.
HSUS obviously believes its strategy of appearing to side with “family farms” and against corporate or modern agriculture is the most effective strategy. These types of populist appeals are especially effective in today’s environment, as it fits into the general narrative that most Americans have been led to believe relative to agriculture.
I’m a social media neophyte. I’m just now learning how to use Facebook and Twitter and I honestly still don’t understand how it all works. But I’m amazed at the number of producers using these media to spread the word about agriculture. Some of them are doing a tremendous job and having a significant impact.
The amazing thing about social media is that the beef industry and producers actually have the means to compete with the messages being advanced by HSUS. Nothing has more populist appeal than actual producers providing actual information.
Social Media Rebuttal: In Response to HSUS’ “A Pig’s Tail”
We are doomed if our battle with groups like HSUS comes down to a battle of who has deeper pockets, or who can hire more lawyers. We’ll never be given the opportunity to put our message out through the mainstream media, in comparison to an HSUS’s ability to create and manipulate public opinion via these avenues.
But the advent of social media means that we have an avenue to get our message out, put a real face to it, and combat the message being given to our youth.