My reflection

The activities I found most useful during this course was recording my own voice and listening to how it sounded in the beginning to present in the context of a professional communicator.

At this stage of the course, I do feel that I am improving with every recording of my voice.  It is not just my voice, but also the tone and how something is said.  Understanding when to emphasise a certain word/s is important when reading the news.  Talking slower, pausing at certain intervals and taking a breath is important when conducting a speech so that viewers can hear and understand me.

I enjoyed watching the King’s Speech and the challenges he faced when he had to deliver a speech.  Both formal and impromptu speeches require good preparation as they both can be nerve wracking when faced with an audience.

Always watch the audiences’ response.  To ensure success, the speaker must always be conscious of the reaction or response of the audience and adjust the level, pace and perhaps the form of the message to suit the audience.  The speech must have substance otherwise the speaker will lose his/hers integrity.

The PAIBOC of speech was a useful way to help plan a script for a speech.  What is the purpose, audience, information, benefits, objects and context?  It is not only used for speech but is a overall life mechanism for planning.

Creating a blog and writing on it regularly has yielded my learning process.  I have not only read the information, but have become inspired by the different writing styles when I look back at what I wrote on my blog.  It has been an interesting experience as I have never blogged prior to this course.

What inspired me with blogging was that I could read what the other students had blogged and that gave me a change to think differently on the subject.  I do believe that this is the first course that has challenged me at every angle, and allowed me to continuously enhance my speech and writing skills.

In examining individual to audience communication we must be aware that the style, vocabulary and tone of the speech may vary according to its purpose.  Various purposes could be to interest or amuse; to inform or teach; stimulate or impress; to motivate; or coerce and persuade.

With a clear understanding of the purpose of the speech, it is important to analyse the audience.  Speaking is a natural and integral part of daily life, fear of speaking is an unnatural, acquired behaviour.  Speaking, whether to one or one thousand requires the same basic communication skills:

–       Our personality – the “this is me” aspect of communication;

–       Body language, expression, posture and other non-verbal communication

–       General appearance – dress, grooming, hair style, physical attitude;

–       Use of language;

–       Voice quality;

–       The clarity with which the intended messages comes across;

–       Level of confidence generated when talking;

–       The degree to which we participate and involve ourselves in public speaking situations.

There are certain pitfalls to be avoided:

–       Be honest with the audience.  Do not misuse statistics;

–       Illustrations are remembered;

–       Talk to the point – stay on the main line;

–       Tell the truth.  Do not misplace emphasis or tell a half-truth story to create a false impression.

–       Do not argue in a circle.  Get straight to the point;

–       Give proof when required.  Do not mistake assertion or contradiction for proof.

–       Be concise.  Do not use a dozen words to say what can be said in one or two.

Hosting a program can be difficult as transgression comes into play as can be seen on the Ellen Degeneres show “You put that on Facebook”.  TV hosts have to be careful what they say to audiences so as not to offend them.  Tasteful wit and humour as in the Ellen show is accepted as audience members are attracted to the entertainment.

I feel more confident with the second assignment as the course was interactive and had a ‘hands on’ approach.  It is important to be professional in communicating at all times.  Speak confidently and with heart to gain credibility from the audience.

With my final assignment, I will have to practice more as I am still not loud and clear enough (due to my South African accent).  One task I was uncomfortable with was the Piece to Camera.  I didn’t know where to look when talking to the camera and I was unsure of how natural I should sound.  I hesitated often and had to search high and low within myself for the words and I still could not find them.

One aspect I am confident in is that although I enjoyed the first assignment, I will not pursue a career in hosting or reporting news.  To be a good TV presenter or host, you need a certain type of personality.  Most hosts started their careers as a journalist.  I would prefer to work behind the scenes and draft scripts for the people who are on the front line.

News Script – Could Biochar be the ultimate solution to our world

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ESdmI7DVTQQ&feature=plcp

I believe I sound more confident in this clip than I was when I first started the course.  I still have a lot of practice before I am able to master my voice and sound like a news presenter, however I will be more prepared and knowledgeable on this subject when Assignment 2 has to be submitted.

News Script: Can Biochar change the world

“Can Biochar be the ultimate solution to saving our planet”?

Tons of research is still needed to answer this lagging question.

Biochar has numerous benefits in the Murrumbidgee area as it can improve the area’s soils, reduce greenhouse gasses.  The local government and communities around the area support the production of Biochar.

Biochar, according to scientists is a highly absorbent charcoal derived from organic waste.  Its’ raw material can be any forest, agricultural or animal waste.  Some examples are woodchips, corn husks, peanut shells and chicken manure.

So, how is it produced?  The waste called “biomass” is fed into an metal barrel where it is cooked under extreme temperatures.  The organic matter is cooked through a thermochemical process called “pyrolysis”.

Within hours, the waste is transformed into charcoal-like pellets.  Farms can then turn these pallets into fertilizer for their land.  One huge benefit is that the gasses during the production can be attached to fuel vehicles of power electric generators.

Biochar is considered by many scientists to be the “black gold” for agriculture.

Biochar helps clean the air by preventing rotting biomass from releasing harmful CO2 into the environment, and encourages plants to securely store CO2 they pull out of the air during photosynthesis.

If the world had to use biochar, we could cut CO2 levels by 8 parts per million within 50 years, according to NASA scientist James Hansen.

The process of making biochar can also lead to other valuable products.

 

Biochar – presentation

http://www.slideshare.net/upload?from_source=loggedin_newsignup

Slide 1

Good Day.  I am from Murrumbidgee Landcare Inc. and my name is Candice Gouck.  I will be presenting a short proposal of a Biochar project.  I will be talking about the Biochar itself and what value it will be bring to our organisation.  The benefits, objectives and risks will also be discussed. (Reference).

Slide 2

Biochar is a solid material derived from the carbonisation of biomass. Biochar may be added to soils with the intention to improve soil functions and to reduce emissions from biomass that would otherwise naturally degrade to greenhouse gases. Biochar also has appreciable carbon sequestration value. These properties are measurable and verifiable in a characterisation scheme, or in a carbon emission offset protocol.

Biochar is the solid remains of any organic material that has been heated to at least 250°C in a zero-oxygen or oxygen-limited environment, which is intended to be mixed with soils. If the solid remains are not suitable for addition to soils or will be burned as a fuel, the material is char, not biochar. Biochar reduces atmospheric greenhouse gas concentrations, improves many soils, potentially enhances crop productivity, provides some energy for human use and can be used to safely dispose of certain waste materials (Biochar International 2012)

Slide 3

Contains some pictures

Slide 4

Sustainable biochar is a powerfully simple tool to fight global warming. The practice has been around for 2,000 years.  It converts agricultural waste into a soil enhancer that can hold carbon, boost food security, and discourage deforestation. Sustainable biochar is one of the few technologies that is pretty much inexpensive, widely applicable, and quickly scalable.

Pyrolysis means heating biomass (wood, manure, crop residues, solid waste, etc..) with limited to no oxygen in a specially designed furnace that captures all emissions, gasses and oils for reuse as energy (Biochar International 2012).

Slide 5

Biochar can be added to soils to improve the soil’s features and reduce emissions from biomass. Biochar improves water quality and quantity by increasing soil retention of nutrients and agrochemicals for plant and crop utilization. More nutrients stay in the soil instead of leaching into groundwater and causing pollution.

Slide 6

Biochar also has appreciable carbon sequestration value. These properties are measurable and verifiable in a characterisation scheme, or in a carbon emission offset protocol.

Slide 7

From Waste to Income – A once worthless and costly byproduct (in most cultures) is now a valuable resource. Through biochar, biomass becomes a sustainable and value-added product for urban and rural agriculture and forest communities while creating jobs, improving soil and reducing forest fire hazards and has created thousands of new jobs (Sustainable, Obtainable Solutions 2009).

Slide 8

Bibens feeds the waste — called “biomass” — into an octagonally shaped metal barrel where it is cooked under intense heat, the organic matter is cooked through a thermochemical process called “pyrolysis”.

In a few hours, organic trash is transformed into charcoal-like pellets farmers can turn into fertilizer. Gasses given off during the process can be harnessed to fuel vehicles of power electric generators.

Slide 9

Current knowledge about the effects of adding biochar to Australian agricultural soils is not enough to sustain it’s recommendation. Currently Australia’s Climate Change Research Program did not showe enough proof  as to the certainty of biochar saving the environment.  However, even though there is this uncertainty, farmers are still making their own biochar which could have negative effects on agricultural production. An environmental sustainability analysis, including a life cycle analysis, will give an indication of the overall impact of biochar use in agricultural situations (Bracmort, KS 2009).

As biochar technology is in its early stages of development, scientists in the United States are concerned. Three issues that are important to introducing this type of technology are: feedstock availability, biochar handling, and biochar system deployment.

Successful implementation of biochar technology is rooted in the ability of the agricultural community to afford and operate a system that is complementary to current farming practices.  The availability of a plentiful feed supply for biochar production is an area for further study. To date, feedstock for biochar has consisted of mostly plant and crop residues, a primary domain of the agricultural community. There may be a role for the forestry community to be involved as woody biomass is deemed a cost-effective, readily available, feasible feedstock. Little is known about the advantages of using manure as a biomass feedstock. Some researchers have stated that manure-based biochar “has advantages over typically used plant-derived material because it is a by-product of another industry and in some regions is considered a waste material with little or no value. It can therefore provide a lower cost base and alleviate sustainability concerns related to using purpose-grown biomass for the process.

The spreading of biochar onto soil as a fertilizer is ripe for further exploration. Specifically, the ideal time to apply biochar and ensure that it remains in place once applied and does not cause a risk to human health or degrade air quality are concerns.12 Particulate matter, in the form of dust that is hard for the human body to filter, may be distributed in abnormal quantities if the biochar is mishandled. Additionally, there are potential public safety concerns for the handling of biochar as it is a flammable substance.

Slide 10

Our proposal is sustainable and can restore degraded land and improve the fertility of soil in an environmentally beneficial way. It is not only of environmental benefit to the Murrumbidgee community, but also to the entire world. This is because it removes carbon dioxide from the atmosphere, which is the principle contributor to global warming, and sequesters it in the ground. It also has the potential to reduce damage to rivers and oceans causes by fertilizer runoff.

Slide 11

Summarise the entire script.

Slide 12

Thank everybody for their time.

Biochar – presentation

http://www.slideshare.net/upload?from_source=loggedin_newsignup

Slide 1

Good Day.  I am from Murrumbidgee Landcare Inc. and my name is Candice Gouck.  I will be presenting a short proposal of a Biochar project.  I will be talking about the Biochar itself and what value it will be bring to our organisation.  The benefits, objectives and risks will also be discussed. (Reference).

Slide 2

Biochar is a solid material derived from the carbonisation of biomass. Biochar may be added to soils with the intention to improve soil functions and to reduce emissions from biomass that would otherwise naturally degrade to greenhouse gases. Biochar also has appreciable carbon sequestration value. These properties are measurable and verifiable in a characterisation scheme, or in a carbon emission offset protocol.

Biochar is the solid remains of any organic material that has been heated to at least 250°C in a zero-oxygen or oxygen-limited environment, which is intended to be mixed with soils. If the solid remains are not suitable for addition to soils or will be burned as a fuel, the material is char, not biochar. Biochar reduces atmospheric greenhouse gas concentrations, improves many soils, potentially enhances crop productivity, provides some energy for human use and can be used to safely dispose of certain waste materials (Biochar International 2012)

Slide 3

Contains some pictures

Slide 4

Sustainable biochar is a powerfully simple tool to fight global warming. The practice has been around for 2,000 years.  It converts agricultural waste into a soil enhancer that can hold carbon, boost food security, and discourage deforestation. Sustainable biochar is one of the few technologies that is pretty much inexpensive, widely applicable, and quickly scalable.

Pyrolysis means heating biomass (wood, manure, crop residues, solid waste, etc..) with limited to no oxygen in a specially designed furnace that captures all emissions, gasses and oils for reuse as energy (Biochar International 2012).

Slide 5

Biochar can be added to soils to improve the soil’s features and reduce emissions from biomass. Biochar improves water quality and quantity by increasing soil retention of nutrients and agrochemicals for plant and crop utilization. More nutrients stay in the soil instead of leaching into groundwater and causing pollution.

Slide 6

Biochar also has appreciable carbon sequestration value. These properties are measurable and verifiable in a characterisation scheme, or in a carbon emission offset protocol.

Slide 7

From Waste to Income – A once worthless and costly byproduct (in most cultures) is now a valuable resource. Through biochar, biomass becomes a sustainable and value-added product for urban and rural agriculture and forest communities while creating jobs, improving soil and reducing forest fire hazards and has created thousands of new jobs (Sustainable, Obtainable Solutions 2009).

Slide 8

Bibens feeds the waste — called “biomass” — into an octagonally shaped metal barrel where it is cooked under intense heat, the organic matter is cooked through a thermochemical process called “pyrolysis”.

In a few hours, organic trash is transformed into charcoal-like pellets farmers can turn into fertilizer. Gasses given off during the process can be harnessed to fuel vehicles of power electric generators.

Slide 9

Current knowledge about the effects of adding biochar to Australian agricultural soils is not enough to sustain it’s recommendation. Currently Australia’s Climate Change Research Program did not showe enough proof  as to the certainty of biochar saving the environment.  However, even though there is this uncertainty, farmers are still making their own biochar which could have negative effects on agricultural production. An environmental sustainability analysis, including a life cycle analysis, will give an indication of the overall impact of biochar use in agricultural situations (Bracmort, KS 2009).

As biochar technology is in its early stages of development, scientists in the United States are concerned. Three issues that are important to introducing this type of technology are: feedstock availability, biochar handling, and biochar system deployment.

Successful implementation of biochar technology is rooted in the ability of the agricultural community to afford and operate a system that is complementary to current farming practices.  The availability of a plentiful feed supply for biochar production is an area for further study. To date, feedstock for biochar has consisted of mostly plant and crop residues, a primary domain of the agricultural community. There may be a role for the forestry community to be involved as woody biomass is deemed a cost-effective, readily available, feasible feedstock. Little is known about the advantages of using manure as a biomass feedstock. Some researchers have stated that manure-based biochar “has advantages over typically used plant-derived material because it is a by-product of another industry and in some regions is considered a waste material with little or no value. It can therefore provide a lower cost base and alleviate sustainability concerns related to using purpose-grown biomass for the process.

The spreading of biochar onto soil as a fertilizer is ripe for further exploration. Specifically, the ideal time to apply biochar and ensure that it remains in place once applied and does not cause a risk to human health or degrade air quality are concerns.12 Particulate matter, in the form of dust that is hard for the human body to filter, may be distributed in abnormal quantities if the biochar is mishandled. Additionally, there are potential public safety concerns for the handling of biochar as it is a flammable substance.

Slide 10

Our proposal is sustainable and can restore degraded land and improve the fertility of soil in an environmentally beneficial way. It is not only of environmental benefit to the Murrumbidgee community, but also to the entire world. This is because it removes carbon dioxide from the atmosphere, which is the principle contributor to global warming, and sequesters it in the ground. It also has the potential to reduce damage to rivers and oceans causes by fertilizer runoff.

Slide 11

Summarise the entire script.

Slide 12

Thank everybody for their time.

News and Infotainment Interviews

News interviews

News interviews are showing signs of diversification.  The news interview may be understood as surrounding a variety of identifiable subgenres consisting of specialized tasks and how they are implemented.  These practices retain common features characteristic of the general run of interviews conducted by professional journalists with newsworthy individuals.

One broad class practice involves “speaking from the heart”.  This means, conveying strong opinions or feelings that are private, and/or genuine.  A good news interviewer allows the politician or public member to disclose his or hers inner feelings.

A second broad class of news practices are actions that are oppositional in some way for example, disagreements, counterproposals, and responses that ignore the agenda of the previous question.

Calling the interviewer by first name comes about at precisely when the Interviewee is working to encourage a claim in the face of a challenge to its sincerity.

Joke/Serious in Question-Answer Sequences: The Case of Infotainment Discourse

Infotainment shows are often used to attack the interviewee.  The interviewer uses humour to aggravate and ridicule the interviewee under the pretext of “joking”.

By using humour in this type of interview, the interviewee feels uncomfortable and uneasy, thereby revealing certain emotions or indirect messages, or they can try to avert away from the question, therefore audiences can be distracted and never receive the correct information.

Some examples of shows that make light of “serious” public affairs are; The Project, Good News Week, Can of Worms and Kyle and Jackie O.  It has become popular according to Clayman & Li (2009) that politicians and other high profile public members are interviewed on these shows as it increases their popularity and sends a message to their viewers.

It is interesting to note that the Kyle and Jackie O show, on numerous occasion landed up in hot water due to their transgression in interviews.  There is a fine line between humour and taking it too far.

References

Clayman, S. 2007, ‘Address Terms in the Service of Other Actions: The Case of News Interview Talk’, http://ehis.ebscohost.com/ehost/pdfviewer/pdfviewer?sid=84d9e9fa-52d7-4299-b082-d75fc6e715fa%40sessionmgr15&vid=5&hid=120

Clayman, S & Li, I 2009, ‘Joke/Serious in Question-answer Sequences: The Case of Infotainment Discourse’, http://ehis.ebscohost.com/ehost/pdfviewer/pdfviewer?sid=84d9e9fa-52d7-4299-b082-d75fc6e715fa%40sessionmgr15&vid=5&hid=120