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Of mice and men: when face-to-face agricultural information is replaced by a mouse click

Agricultural Communications Documentation Center (ACDC)
Charatsari, Chrysanthi (main author), Lioutas, Evagelos D. (author)
Online journal article
Publication Date:
Taylor & Francis
Agricultural Communications Documentation Center, Funk Library, University of Illinois
Subject Term:
agronomy, cotton, farmer needs, information needs, information sources, Internet, information quality, knowledge exchange, Greece (Europe), farmer-to-farmer communication
30 pages., via online journal., In this article we present and discuss two experiments designed to test the effectiveness of the Internet as a tool of agricultural information. Subjects were cotton producers from Thessaly, Greece. Findings suggest that, in the early stages of an innovation diffusion process, the Internet is more effective than social sources (Experiment 1). However, when urgent situations that force quick decisions occur (Experiment 2), the Internet is significantly less effective than face-to-face communication channels. In both cases, farmers who used the Internet spent more time and devoted extra effort. The experiments proved that agronomists remain the most effective information source. Results also illustrate that Internet adoption is not necessarily synonymous with its use.