ACDC News – Issue 06-20

How U. S. producers are gathering farming information by radio and the Internet. 

Here are some results from the National Association of Farm Broadcasting’s 2006 Qualitative Survey of Commercial Producers. Findings reflect research by Ag Media Research involving 1,003 Class 1+ producers in 12 Corn Belt states. Among the sampled producers:

  • Seventy percent with gross farm income (GFI) of $40,000-$100,000 and 78 percent of those with GFI of $250,000+ said they use radio daily for farming information.
  • Daily Internet use for farming information ranged from 26 percent (producers with $40,000-$100,000 GFI) to 42 percent ($250,000+ GFI).
  • Internet usage is limited by lack of access to high-speed connections. By GFI category, 16-34 percent reported having high-speed access.
  • Downloading of audio from the Internet for any purpose remained very low, at 2.3 percent overall.

Summary posted at:

Wide range in awareness of genetically modified foods.

This pattern appeared in a recent survey by Synovate, a global market research company, among 3,127 respondents in five countries.

“While 84 percent of Greeks are extremely or somewhat familiar with these products, 92 percent of Indonesians have not heard of that term. A majority of respondents in South Africa and Poland are also familiar with genetically modified foods, while 65 percent of Singaporeans profess ignorance.”

Title: GM foods ok as long as they taste good 
Archived August 15, 2006, at

When farmers establish web sites for direct marketing. 

We have added to the ACDC collection a research paper identifying characteristics of northeastern U. S. farms that established web sites for direct marketing.

Researchers Alexander Baer and Cheryl Brown of West Virginia University found that some sales locations and product types, advertising diversity, high speed Internet connections and gross farm sales were significantly related to website adoption.

Title: Adoption of e-marketing by direct market farms

An innovation that farmers rejected. 

Initial research suggested they would adopt a new soil nitrogen technology. However, a follow-up case analysis published in Technology in Society revealed otherwise:

“…the N-Trak late spring soil nitrogen test was not adopted and did not diffuse in Iowa as predicted by the manufacturer or university researchers. Despite growing environmental concerns and interest in sustainable agriculture, late spring soil nitrogen testing in general has not rapidly diffused in the state.”

Authors concluded that results point to the problem of generalizations that take place within innovation theory.

Title: Evolution of an agricultural innovation

Global coalition provides greater access to food and agriculture journals. 

“More than 100 of the world’s poorest countries will now be able to access leading food and agriculture journals for little or no cost,” according to a recent report from the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations.

A public-private partnership known as Global Online Research in Agriculture (AGORA) is making the program possible. Through it, 37 of the world’s leading science publishers, FAO and other partners are providing access to more than 900 agriculture-related journals. Through a recent expansion, AGORA is now serving eligible universities, colleges, research institutes, government ministries and non-governmental organizations in 106 countries that have a per capita GNP of US$3000 or less.

Title: The power of information – closing the knowledge gap 
Posted at:

Welcome to a new ACDC associate.

We are delighted to welcome Kathy Novotney as a new student associate in the Center, on a part-time basis. A sophomore in the agricultural communications curriculum, she is getting acquainted with the Center, helping maintain the collection and processing new documents into it.

“With each different task, I see different aspects of agricultural communications,” Kathy reports. “The thousands of articles could provide me with a very rich background. I am enjoying working there a lot!”

Kathy found pleasure in her agriculture classes at Seneca ( Illinois ) High School and wanted to pursue a career in writing as well, so decided to combine those interests. Responsibilities as FFA chapter secretary and president helped her develop skills as a writer and speaker. During her senior year she wrote a monthly column for a local newspaper and, during the past summer, covered agriculture for the same paper.

The “loving pigs” and other classic rural photos by Joe Munroe.

Few readers may be familiar with Joe Munroe, a leading U. S. agricultural photographer during the mid-1900s. However, we believe many fans of skilled rural photography may appreciate images being preserved in the Joe Munroe Archives of the Ohio Historical Society.

Munroe’s rural photography appeared regularly in the respected Farm Quarterly magazine, beginning in the 1940s. His classic “loving pigs” photo graced one of the most memorable FQ covers and circulated internationally as a poster.

Title: Joe Munroe Archives 
You can see the nuzzling pigs and a variety of other rural images in the Munroe collection. Visit:

Communicator activities approaching

November 9-11, 2006
Fifth Conference of the Asian Federation for Information Technology in Agriculture (AFITA) in Bangalore, India.

November 15-17, 2006
“Farm and rural horizons.” Annual convention of the National Association of Farm Broadcasting (NAFB) in Kansas City, Missouri USA.

Crowing low. Roosting high.

We close this issue of ACDC News by featuring a conversation style that may interest rural reporters who like to hone their interviewing skills. It comes from a book, Cow People, and takes place in open range country during the early 1900s.

A traveling salesman comes upon a man of the land, J. M. Shannon.

“What part of this country do you live in, anyway?
“Oh, out yonder,” Mr. Shannon replied.
“What do you do?”
“I take care of things.”
“What sort of things?”
“Well, sheep, cattle, horses, windmills, fences – things like that.”
“You must live on a ranch.”
“That’s right.”
“Whose ranch”?
“People call it mine.”
“How big is it?”
“Several sections.”
“How many cattle do you own?”
“For taxable purposes, several hundred, I guess.”

Yes, you are correct. The traveler was talking to one of the richest men in west Texas.

Title: Cow people

Please get in touch with us when you see in this collection interesting items you cannot find, locally or online.

Reach us at Tell us the titles and/or document numbers. We will help you gain access.

Best regards and good searching. Please pass along your reactions, suggestions and ideas for the Agricultural Communications Documentation Center. Feel free to invite our help as you search for information. And please suggest (or send) agricultural communications documents we might add to this unique collection. We welcome them in hard copy (sent to Ag Com Documentation Center, 510 LIAC, 1101 S. Goodwin Avenue, Urbana, IL 61801 ) or electronic form at


October 2006


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