AgInfo News from IAALD

Under the tagline 'Realtime Web for the Bottom Billion', a new type of service for farmers is emerging.

Piloting in India and Uganda, Question Box "brings information to people who cannot or do not access the Internet directly." It "leaps over illiteracy, computer illiteracy, lack of networks, and language barriers."

Combining mobile phones with the power of the Internet, rural people can pose their questions to local call centers where operators research answers. The questions and answers are in local languages and, notably, don't require users to be able to read and write. ( Note, the Kothmale Internet Project in Sri Lanka did something similar by combining rural radio with questions and answers)