NYSG's “Currents Clips” Wins 2020 Folio Award for ‘Best Social Media Public Awareness Campaign’
Currents Clips - News


Paul C. Focazio, Communications Manager, New York Sea Grant, E: Paul.Focazio@stonybrook.edu, P: (631)-632-6910

Stony Brook, NY, September 22, 2020 - In a virtual ceremony held earlier today, New York Sea Grant’s (NYSG) "Currents Clips" received a Folio Award from the Fair Media Council (FMC) for best “Social Media Public Awareness Campaign.” 
Launched in mid-2019 as a limited series, "Currents Clips" is a collection of one- to two-minute videos that immerses NYSG Web site visitors, social media followers and NY Coastlines e-newsletter subscribers into the program's coastal research, extension and education work. 

“In this age of rapidly evolving online and social media, finding new approaches to convey the important programming that our staff conducts to New York’s coastal communities is essential,” said NYSG Director, Becky Shuford. “NYSG is pleased to receive this award from the FMC for the “Current Clips,” and thanks the judges for their support of this video series.”

Running in two waves that began in late May 2019, a total of 40 clips were released through late fall via @nyseagrant on Facebook and Twitter as well as at www.nyseagrant.org/currentsclips.

FMC CEO and Executive Director Jaci Clement said Sea Grant’s nominated series scored the highest of all winners from throughout the Folio Awards’ 20 social media categories: "The judges loved the campaign--even the music choice!"

Each of these words-on-the-screen videos, produced by NYSG Communications Manager Paul C. Focazio and freelance writer Ryan Strother in collaboration with the program’s staff, features a similar instrumental backing track, as they are designed to be viewed with or without sound in social media news feeds.

“There are a lot of stories being covered by New York’s media, especially on Long Island and throughout New York City,” said Focazio. “So this series was our experiment to act as ‘disruptors’ in this ever-increasingly saturated market, with our end product making science more accessible and digestible to a wide-ranging audience on social media.”

The idea worked, furthering NYSG’s mission of “Bringing Science to Shore” by serving New York aquatic science videos to more than 20,000 Facebook users, and an average of 1,600 viewers per day on Twitter. “I’m proud to report that we achieved our goal, which was to provide eye-catching summaries of our scientifically-driven, detailed stories in a concise and visually compelling way,” said Focazio.

"The Folio judging process is unlike any other, as it seeks to recognize outstanding social media campaigns of relevance and importance to the public,” said Clement. “That's a high standard, and on behalf of the Fair Media Council's Board of Directors, we congratulate you on raising the bar even higher."

The first video in the series, "The State of Sea Grant," is a one-and-a-half minute snapshot of the 20 page 2019 biennial report shared with the U.S. Congress, which includes statistics on the coastal science program's benefits to communities nationwide.

One of the questions answered in last year’s social media series was “How Sea Grant Benefits You in 2019.” For nearly 50 years, New York Sea Grant has worked with coastal residents, communities, businesses and teachers, among others, on problems, opportunities and specific activities within the land and water interface. As seen in the just-over-a-minute clip above, the program promotes cost-effective and common sense solutions to concerns New Yorkers face along the State’s marine, Great Lakes and Hudson River coasts.

More Info: FMC’s Folio Awards

The Folio Awards brings together the best in media with community and business leaders to celebrate and honor quality news and impactful social media. Local, regional and national news stories and social media campaigns are judged by media-savvy news consumers and journalists for excellent journalism and relevance to the public, among other criteria. Each year, a mix of business and community leaders and journalists volunteer their time as judges to support the Fair Media Council and its Folio Awards.

Clement serves as the voice of the public in news matters, to ensure news coverage is responsible and the media remains responsive and respectful to the public it serves.

"The Folio Awards recognize excellent journalism that resonates with the public – and that's critical feedback for a newsroom, because great journalism means nothing if it doesn't capture the public's attention. Put another way: You need critical acclaim and success at the box office to earn a Folio," said Clement.

You can view all of the 2020 Folio Award winners via FMC's Web site.

When Superstorm Sandy hit Long Island in late October 2012, three breaches opened in Fire Island, a barrier to the south that separates a series of bays from the ocean. The largest breach was 500 feet wide. Two were closed immediately by the Army Corps of Engineers. But officials decided to leave the one in Fire Island Park’s wilderness area to evolve on its own. Thus, the storm changed the number of inlets to the Atlantic Ocean from four to five. As highlighted in this video, “The Post-Superstorm Sandy Upside in Great South Bay," New York Sea Grant funded a rapid response study to find out what the effects of the new inlet might be.

"Currents Clips" is a limited series of one to two minute video summaries that immersed NYSG's Web site visitors, social media followers and NY Coastlines subscribers into the program's coastal research, extension and education stories. In addition to being featured on NYSG's Web site as well as Facebook and Twitter, the series was featured in three of the program's e-newsletter issues: Summer 2019, Fall 2019 and Winter 2020.

More Info: New York Sea Grant

New York Sea Grant (NYSG), a cooperative program of Cornell University and the State University of New York (SUNY), is one of 34 university-based programs under the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s National Sea Grant College Program.

Since 1971, NYSG has represented a statewide network of integrated research, education and extension services promoting coastal community economic vitality, environmental sustainability and citizen awareness and understanding about the State’s marine and Great Lakes resources.

Through NYSG’s efforts, the combined talents of university scientists and extension specialists help develop and transfer science-based information to many coastal user groups—businesses and industries, federal, state and local government decision-makers and agency managers, educators, the media and the interested public.

The program maintains Great Lakes offices at Cornell University, University at Buffalo, SUNY Oswego and the Wayne County Cooperative Extension office in Newark. In the State's marine waters, NYSG has offices at Stony Brook University in Long Island, Brooklyn College and Cornell Cooperative Extension in NYC and Kingston in the Hudson Valley.

For updates on Sea Grant activities: www.nyseagrant.org has RSS, Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and YouTube links. NYSG offers a free e-list sign up via www.nyseagrant.org/nycoastlines for its flagship publication, NY Coastlines/Currents, which is published quarterly. Our program also produces an occasional e-newsletter,"NOAA Sea Grant's Social Media Review," via its blog, www.nyseagrant.org/blog.

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