Title : Using new media tools to connect micropropagation scientists, propagators and hobbyists
New media tools such as internet chat, photo and video transfer, video-conference and disciussion groups developed in recent years. The discussion groups that address plant tissue culture include groups covering a wide range of plant species or groups dedicated to a specific group of plants (for example: carnivorous plants) or a specific family (example: orchids). Some groups are limited to scienentists while others combine scientific, commercial and hobby backhrounds. The size of the discussion groups vary between a few hundreds up to a few thousands members. These groups discuss a wide range of relevant issues. Among the topics discussed at Micropropag, a facebook group that I established on 2016, are: micropropagation stages (0 to 4), culture vessels, propagation protocols for various plants, medium and gaseous phase, temporary immersion, somatic embryogenesis, synthetic seeds, microbial contamination, micropropagation tools, sterilization of vessels and tools, nurse cultures, culture conditions (various illumination sources, effect of temperatures, etc.) plants’ conservation in vitro, etc. The means for discussing the above were posts, photos, videos and video conference. Contests of best photo and video encouraged members’ participation. Recommendations for relevant bibliography as well as professional scientific meetings are mentioned from time to time. Direct advertisement was rear. Commercial issues were discussed between members using their private Messengers. With the aid of the host (Facebook, LinkedIn, etc.) the group administrators can obtain group insights such as groups growth info, number of publications, popular days and hours for posting, active members, members’ countries and cities. New Media tools provide additional ways for discussion and information transfer that can be used by scientists and professionals. Understanding its opportunities and limitations of using is, therefore, important.