AAEA Proposes Membership Changes

Chuck Zimmerman

AAEA The Agriculture Communicators Network is seeking input from its members about a proposed change in membership categories. Here is what is proposed.

The AAEA board is proposing new membership categories that reflect the editorial functions of our members, serve communicators who want to support editorial and content creation, and engage communicators who are at different ends of their career. The proposal allows more potential members serve in leadership roles while valuing the editorial purpose of our organization. It also provides more clarity to membership classes.

In the past we had five membership classes: Active, Affiliate, Honorary Life, Student and Retired.

Under the new membership proposal we will have six membership classes: Editorial, Associate, Partner, Student, Retiree and Honorary Life.

Here are the full descriptions of the proposed categories:

Editorial Member– Individuals working for general or specialized agricultural publication or media outlet published in the United States or Canada and which either (1) has paid circulation and/or (2) accepts paid advertising. The primary source of funding for the media outlet comes from either paid circulation or paid advertising. The primary job function of the communicator is media and content creation.

Associate Member– Individuals engaged in content creation, photography, video, design, digital and social media, blogging or other communications work directly related to publishing content about agriculture or food. Individuals engaged in agricultural communications work for a governmental agency, an educational institution, a non-profit institution or foundation, or an agribusiness company.

Partner Member– Individuals employed by agribusiness companies, marketing and public relations agencies, commodity organizations, government agencies and others who support AAEA but whose individual role does not have an editorial or content generation function. Communicators who primarily advocate for a position or are sponsored content providers are eligible for partner membership.

Student Member– Full-time student enrolled in an approved agricultural or communications curriculum.

Retiree Member– Retired memberships are available for members who are retired and no longer working in a communications role.

Honorary Life Member– Honorary life membership may be granted to members who have rendered distinguished service to the association and to agriculture.

Please let the organization office, board or members know your thoughts. This proposal will be discussed and voted on during the Ag Media Summit this summer.

My question is, “Where does a farmer with a blog or podcast on which advertising is sold fit?”