The Long and the Short of It

In Blog Procedures, Christianity on April 21, 2009 at 12:41 pm

In the post Thank You Young Catholics, I mentioned everyone seems young to me these days.  Want proof?  Well, I go back to the early days of the Internet—yes, even before Al Gore invented it.  I was on a team that developed one of the first Internet portals, which we sold to AOL in 1995. Even the word “portal” is so Web 1.0!  We hardly use the word today.

What does any of that have to do with Christianity Richly?  Two things:  first, one of the joys of Web 2.0 and social media is that we no longer go to the Web just to find information.  Just as frequently, we go there to find each other.  I follow some wonderful  people on Twitter who I would never have known otherwise: a writer in Phoenix, a technology analyst in the San Francisco Bay Area; an entrepreneur in Upstate South Carolina, as just three examples.  And through social media, I know the writer’s birthday; the antics of the analyst’s dog; that the entrepreneur loves cigars.  

These touches of humanness make the Web far more than an digital reference library, or worse, a channel for instantaneous delivery of spam.  Perhaps I’m not stretching my point by quoting the opening words of Gaudium et Spes: through the Web 2.0, we better understand “the joy and hope, the grief and anguish” of men and women in our times—just as the Church seeks to know, understand, and respond to these things.  I hope so.  I’ll be returning to that theme soon, in a post on John O’Malley’s book, What Happened at Vatican II.

But my second reason for mentioning the Internet and social media is because micro-blogging sites like Twitter are changing the ways we exchange information.  This post has already reached 297 words.  Twitter is limited to 140 characters (letters and spaces combined)!

So, you’ll find some long posts here, when the importance of the topic merits some length.  But expect some short ones, too, when the point can be made quickly or the scope of the topic is more limited.  And for the shortest possible posts, follow @ChristRichly on Twitter!  And that’s the long and the short of it . . . at Christianity Richly today.

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