Saturday 20th saw The Christian New Media Conference 2012 take place in London, now the great thing about it was that the amount of tweets that took place about the event using the #cnmac12 hashtag meant that if needed, people could attend the event… via twitter. Quite odd, not ideal, but still quite good fun and almost educational.
As I shared three lessons I took away from the conference last year, I decided to have a go at sharing a few ponderings and questions that stood out to me from watching the #cnmac12 tweets this year.
1) Who are you. What do you represent?
If Jesus painted an image of God, so we can as well; what sort of image do we paint? Do our Twitter / Facebook streams look like one long collection of inspirational Nicky Gumbel / CS Lewis moments, or do we take a chance and share when we’re vulnerable? What if we over share when we’re vulnerable? I’m sure we’ve all seen those Facebook status’ that make it obvious that the person who wrote it is upset – but they dont want to say why…
Is there a happy medium between sharing the highs and lows of life, without coming across as either boastful, or that you’re just looking for attention?
2) The Future of Media.
Well I’m sure there have been news stories that I’ve heard about via newspapers / TV reports first… But I’m fairly sure I’ve heard about all the interesting stories via Twitter first. Is the online world really starting to influence the world of printed / on screen media? The tale of George Osborne and the Standard Class ticket was first told via Twitter before the news was available via other means. In her talk on “Has twitter made it ok to pray?“, Bryony Taylor suggests that the printed media now follows what happens first on digital media, with the observation that without Twitter, the headline “God is in control” would never have appeared in The Sun.
What does it mean for the humble church notice sheet if digital media is leading printed media?
3) Who Do We Talk To?
Do we stay within a Christian bubble online? Do we talk to people in our local neighborhood? If you’re on either Twitter or Google Plus, try out the “nearby” function, if nothing else you may end up finding a great way to get local news.
4) You Are Not Alone.
We read stories to remember we’re not alone in the world.
We read tweets and go on Facebook to connect to people.
And I guess, conferences like this are important in case you’re the lone webmaster / facebooker / creative type / tweeter in your church. Just remember: You are not alone.