Public Release: 

AGU Fall Meeting -- Media advisory 1

American Geophysical Union

Contents of this message:

1. Fall Meeting to attract more than 15,000 scientists
2. U.S. visa regulations for international reporters
3. Book hotel rooms now for the best selection
4. News Media registration information
5. News Media Registration Form


  1. Fall Meeting to attract more than 15,000 scientists

    The American Geophysical Union's Fall Meeting returns to the Moscone Convention Center, located at 800 Howard Street in San Francisco, California. The dates are Monday-Friday, 10-14 December 2007. An unprecedented 15,000-plus scientists from all over the world are expected to assemble for this premier meeting of the Earth and space sciences, surpassing last year's record attendance.

    For journalists, Fall Meeting is an opportunity to learn about the latest research in fields as diverse as climate change, space weather, planetary exploration, volcanism and seismology, and Earth's magnetic field--just for starters. The preliminary program lists 540 sessions, which are described at http://www.agu.org/meetings/fm07/?content=search (click on "Search" for full list of topics, including descriptions). Note: some of these proposed sessions may be dropped or modified, and others added, depending upon abstracts received by the 6 September deadline.

    For public information officers of universities, government agencies, and research institutions, Fall Meeting is an opportunity to present your research to more than one hundred reporters, through press releases, participation by your scientists in press conferences, and of course, one-to-one contact with the media.

    A link to our on-line News Media Registration Form for use by both reporters and PIOs is at the end of this message.

    A full program of press conferences is in development and will be announced in later advisories. Press conferences will likely be held on all five days of the meeting this year.

    We are planning a field trip for News Media registrants on Sunday, 9 December. So, if you are coming from afar, plan to arrive on Saturday, 8 December. The likely destination is the imperiled Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta--a huge swath of former marshland carved by 1,100 miles of fragile levees into agricultural fields and channels for transporting water to farms, factories, and the taps of more than 20 million Californians. Earthquakes, land subsidence, sea-level rise, and other forces threaten the region, whose levees, pumps, sunken fields, and reclamation projects are all potential stops on the all-day tour. Subsequent advisories will provide details.

  2. U.S. visa regulations for international reporters
    All journalists who are not United States citizens or permanent residents need a visa to cover scientific meetings in the U.S. This applies equally to journalists from "Visa Waiver Program" countries (e.g., western Europe), who do not normally need visas to enter the U.S. as tourists. This is not a new requirement, but it is now being enforced strictly.

    The visa for journalists is an "I" visa, issued by the American Embassy or an American Consulate in your home country. If you are planning to cover Fall Meeting, please apply early for your "I" visa. The procedure is not complicated, but depending on the volume of total visa applications, it may take some time to be issued.

    The U.S. Department of State has posted a fact sheet about visas for journalists on its Web site, which you are urged to consult: http://travel.state.gov/visa/tempvisitors_types_media.html.

  3. Book hotel rooms now for the best selection

    With more than 15,000 scientists and at least 200 news media registrants expected at Fall Meeting, it makes sense to book your hotel room now at preferential rates. Cancellations are possible without penalties up to 72 hours prior to arrival. By booking now, you are more likely to get your preferred location or rate, whichever is your top priority.

    A wide range of hotel options are available with varying rates, levels of service, and locations. Limited, round-trip shuttle service from most hotels to Moscone Center is provided. Shuttle schedules will be posted at hotels and Moscone Center.

    Sixteen hotels offer rooms at rates ranging from $97 to $208 per day, plus tax. Hotel reservations are made on a first-come, first-served basis. Special AGU room rates are subject to availability after the 9 November reservations deadline.

    To see the list of available hotels, their rates and amenities, as well as a map ("CC" is Moscone West Convention Center), and an online booking form, go to http://www.cmrhousing.com/agu_2u/welcome.aspx.

  4. News Media registration information

  5. News Media registrants receive, at no charge, a badge that provides access to any of the scientific sessions of the meeting, as well as to the Press Room and Briefing Room. The locations of these rooms have not yet been finalized. No one will be admitted without a valid badge.

    Eligibility for press registration is limited to the following persons:

    • Working press employed by bona fide news media: must present a press card, business card, or letter of introduction from an editor of a recognized publication.

    • Freelance science writers: must present one of the following: a current membership card from NASW, a regional affiliate of NASW, CSWA, ISWA, or SEJ; or evidence of by-lined work pertaining to science intended for the general public and published in 2006 or 2007; or a letter from the editor of a recognized publication assigning you to cover Fall Meeting.

    • Public information officers of scientific societies, educational institutions, and government agencies: must present a business card.

    Note: Representatives of publishing houses, for-profit corporations, and the business side of news media must register at the main registration desk at the meeting and pay the appropriate fees, regardless of possession of any of the above documents. They are not accredited as News Media at the meeting.

    Scientists who are also reporters and who are presenting at this meeting (oral or poster session) may receive News Media credentials if they qualify (see above), but must also register for the meeting and pay the appropriate fee as a presenter.

  6. News Media Registration Form

  7. The News Media Registration Form is set up for online submission only. Go to: http://www.agu.org/meetings/fm07/?content=media&show=pressReg_online

    The last day for advance News Media registration, assuring that your badge will be waiting for you when you arrive, is Friday, 30 November 2007. You may also register onsite in the Press Room.

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