ACDC News – Issue 13-08

Internet adding $2,000-plus annual gross farm income to small farms

“Small farms with access to the Internet earned approximately $2,200 to $2,700 more in gross farm income compared to small farms without access to the Internet.” That conclusion came from a research report we have added to the ACDC collection. A pair of agricultural economists at Louisiana State University presented their findings during February. Researchers used data from a nationwide U. S. Department of Agriculture survey of farm households in 2010. They defined a “small farm” as having a gross cash farm income of less than $250,000. Sixty-two percent of the small farm households had access to the Internet.

Researchers concluded that small farm businesses, through good management of off-farm and on-farm activities, can benefit from Internet service as it opens up options for gaining information and potentially reducing input costs and household expenses.

You can read this conference paper, “Assessing the impact of Internet access,” at:

$20 cows making media headlines in Australia

Thanks to Gordon Collie of AgriProse in Brisbane, Australia, for an alert about some newsy reporting by James Nason ( ) that caught urban attention.

Gordon explains that the killer line in this recent story was about two unwanted cows in a yarding of 3,000 head. James reported that they actually sold for $20 each. In the story, he went on to quote the local selling agent as having heard on the radio that you need to sell 25 cattle at $20 a head to feed a family for two weeks.

Gordon continued: “Then we have some bright spark working out how many cows a farmer has to sell at $20 to feed his family!”

Information that Italian consumers want and use on food labels

A 2012 article in the International Journal on Food System Dynamics described results of focus groups and a survey among consumers in Milan. Among the findings:

  • Vitamins, energy, and fat content emerged as most important to these consumers.
  • They also expressed high interest in the origin of the products, presence or absence of genetically modified organisms (GMOs), environmental impact, animal welfare, and type of breeding.
  • They said they want information that is simple and easy to read.
  • They require the information to come from third parties that can certify and guarantee the truthfulness of claims.
  • They welcome the possibility of personalized services, such as through smart labels for mobile phones.

You can read the journal article at:

180th birth anniversary of a pioneer rural journalist

April brought the 180 th birth anniversary of a pioneer rural journalist. We learned of it recently when we added to the ACDC collection a news article about observance of a birth anniversary recognizing Kangal Harinath. The occasion took place in his ancestral home in Kushtia, a district now in western Bangladesh.

Speakers at the birthday anniversary recognized Harinath (1833-1896) as a pioneer in rural journalism. He first wrote for a newspaper, Sangbad Prabhakar , in 1854. In 1860 he began publishing Grambarta Prokashika , which emerged as a leading weekly magazine. He was cited as “one of the few dedicated souls who through his writings relentlessly sought to alleviate the misery of the masses.”

You can read this article at:

Is development journalism out of date?

Researchers Jeffrey Wimmer and Susanne Wolf asked that question in a 2005 article in Munich Contributions to Science Communication . Their analysis provided an overview of journalism education offered by African universities at that time, with special focus on the concept and guidelines of development journalism. It reveals course offerings in development journalism at universities in 14 African nations.

Authors concluded: “Development journalism nowadays seems to have a firm position in African journalism education. This development does not take place on a big scale, but it definitely happens in niches.”

You can read this article at:

Darn, where did that link go?

If you happen to use the internet frequently, you’re probably familiar with this exclamation. As we here at the ACDC have noted in earlier newsletters, information online can be tragically ephemeral and transitory. In a world that demands information in an instant, this difficulty can be an immense frustration.

Happily for us, however, the ACDC has begun adopting a potential solution to this problem: a DOI, or Digital Object Identifier, is a string of characters assigned to a digital object (such as a journal article) to serve as a persistent identifier. This means that no matter where the article moves on the internet, by inserting the character string after the DOI repository prefix, you will always be linked to the same object.

If you’d like to learn more about DOIs, we encourage you to consult these additional sources:

In our next issue, we will provide some examples of how you can use DOIs to help locate material in the ACDC collection and elsewhere on the internet.

Communicator activities approaching

  • June 1-5, 2013
    “Sound ideas: the stage is set.” Annual Institute of the Cooperative Communicators Association (CCA) in Nashville, Tennessee. Information:
  • June 11-14, 2013
    “ACE-NETC Racing Ahead 2013.” Joint conference of the Association for Communication Excellence in Agriculture, Natural Resources, and Life and Human Sciences (ACE) and the National Extension Technology Conference (NETC) in Indianapolis, Indiana. Commemorates the 100th anniversary of ACE and features more than 100 professional breakout sessions. Information:
  • June 17-21, 2013
    Conference of the International Communication Association (ICA) in London, UK. Information:
  • July 22-24, 2013
    “Emerging priorities for scientific and agricultural information.” 14th World Congress of the International Association of Agricultural Information Specialists in Ithaca, New York. Information:
  • August 3-7, 2013
    “Just wing it!” Agricultural Media Summit sponsored by the American Agricultural Editors’ Association (AAEA), Livestock Publications Council (LPC) and the Agri Council of American Business Media in Buffalo, New York. Also hosts the annual conference of the student organization, Agricultural Communicators of Tomorrow (ACT). Information:
  • August 26-28, 2013
    “Transformative change: chosen or unchosen—pathways to innovation, resilience and prosperity.” International conference of the Australasian-Pacific Extension Network (APEN) in Christchurch, New Zealand. Information:
  • September 1-5, 2013
    Annual Congress of the International Federation of Agricultural Journalists (IFAJ) in Buenos Aires and Rosario, Argentina. Information:

Blessed are the meek

We close this issue of ACDC News with advice from a country editor, Donald A. Norberg. He shared his code of practice in a 1949 issue of Nieman Reports . He offered the following philosophy in his article, which we added recently to the ACDC collection:

“Community newspapers cannot just observe and report on the parade of humanity. They’ve got to march in it.” The meek, he argued, are the marchers…the builders.

Check with us at if you would like help in gaining access to this article, “Blessed are the meek.”

Best wishes and good searching

Please pass along your reactions, suggestions and ideas. Feel free to invite our help as you search for information. Don’t forget to follow us on Twitter @ACDCUIUC . And please suggest (or send) agricultural communications documents we might add to this unique collection. We welcome them in hard copy (sent to Ag Comm Documentation Center, room 510, 1101 S. Goodwin Avenue, Urbana, IL 61801) or in electronic format sent to