Internet Survey for NC Farmers

— Written By

The North Carolina Broadband Infrastructure Office, with the Friday Institute at NC State University, is conducting a five-minute survey to gather data on internet connectivity from North Carolina farmers. The survey was developed in part from information gathered during NC Farm Bureau Federation listening sessions conducted with local farmers and agriculture partners. The data will be used to inform research, policy and funding recommendations to assist communities where internet access is inadequate.

Specifically, this survey is targeting connectivity to farm offices, although there are a few questions on connectivity in the fields. Farm offices are the primary location farmers conduct business for their farm, sometimes located next to their fields, and may be a household.  The survey focuses on broadband availability questions about wired, cellular and wireless (fixed and satellite) access, and it also includes an optional internet speed test.

If a farm office currently has internet service, participants are strongly encouraged to take the speed test, but they need to take it from the office location.

Participants without any internet service will need to take the survey from another location where they can access the online survey tool. These participants do not need to take the speed test. They will not be directed to it within the survey.

The farm office address is critical to identifying underserved farms. Farmers are asked to provide the street address of the farm office to help identify areas needing improved internet access.

Farm office locations may be:

  • mapped to show unmet needs or demand for high-speed internet
  • shared with relevant internet service providers or other partners to identify service solutions
  • included in a public map, with location points buffered for privacy

The current survey will run until April 30, 2020. It is targeted towards the following types of farms: field and row crops, livestock and specialty crops, but other farmers may participate. There is a question within the survey for farmers to identify their types of farming activities. This survey is meant to be taken only by farmers, or their employees, about their farms.