Agricultural Economics Department


Date of this Version

June 2001


Published in Cornhusker Economics. June 13, 2001. Produced by the Cooperative Extension, Institute of Agriculture and Natural Resources, Department of Agricultural Economics, University of Nebraska-Lincoln .


In the past decade, there has been a convergence of computer and telephone technologies that has created the Internet, arguably the most rapidly embraced technology in history. Using a benchmark of rapid diffusion as the time required to reach 50 million users, the public Internet, which took four years to reach 50 million users, is spreading more rapidly than radio (38 years), the personal computer (18 years), television (13 years) or any other modern technology. The result has been that the Internet has already reached “mass market” status ( Burgess, 1999).