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Peter Hill
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Peter Hill

The social media phenomenon in farming

Published on 29th January 2014

The new phenomenon of the 'felfie' - farmers posting online pictures of themselves as a variation of the 'selfie' - was explored by The Guardian newspaper with the help of two Members of the Guild.

In 'The felfie: how farmers are embracing social media', The Guardian reports that posting their 'felfies' online is not just a bit of fun for farmers, it shows how social media can be a lifeline for people in a lonely profession.

farmingselfies.comGuild member Will Wilson was inspired to set up the farmingselfie.com website after a competition by Irish Farmers Journal went viral. Photos entered into the 'Selfie on the Farm' competition have featured on internet news sites all over the world. Will's site also carries Twitter links to 'the world's best farming jokes'.

Fellow Guild member Simon Haley is giving three-hour Defra-funded talks to farmer groups around the country on how to use social media. The initiative follows the success of the #AgriChatUK forum on Twitter which he co-founded.

Simon says:  "Farming can in many ways be very, very lonely. Twitter is a great way to bring people together and enable them to communicate with each other in an easy manner."

Farmers of the UKHis latest Twitter project is @FarmersoftheUK which features the Tweets of a different farmer each week reporting his work and domestic life. It already has more than 4200 followers, while #AgriChatUK has comfortably passed the 10,000 mark.

But as well as watching or joing in online discussions, farmers and many others involved in agriculture do enjoy reaching out by posting photographs, it seems. A further variation on the 'felfie' theme began to take off at the LAMMA show in January as visitors and standholders posted a 'telfie' of themselves - a self-portrait photo taken while standing in front of their favourite tractor or farm machine.

Before Google searching for examples, though, just be aware that the word 'toilet' also begins with a 't'.........

Peter Hill

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