Advertisement

HindustanTimes Sun,21 Dec 2014

Social Media

Advertisement
Pope joins the tweeting masses
AP
Vatican City, December 03, 2012
First Published: 20:51 IST(3/12/2012)
Last Updated: 12:49 IST(4/12/2012)
Pope Benedict XVI touches a touchpad to send a tweet at the Vatican. AP Photo

Benedict XVI, the pope known for his hefty volumes of theology, is now trying brevity - spreading the faith through his own Twitter account.

The pontiff will tweet starting Dec. 12 using his personal handle (at)Pontifex, responding live to questions about faith during his weekly general audience, the Vatican said on Monday.

Questions can be submitted to (hash) askpontifex, and the pope will likely respond to three to five of those sent from around the world, the Vatican's communications adviser Greg Burke told a news conference.

The pope sent his first tweet in 2011 from a Vatican account to launch the Holy See's news information portal, part of efforts to increase the church presence in social media and spread the faith.

A personal Twitter account for the 85-year-old Benedict has been the subject of speculation ever since Monday's news conference was packed in an indication of the interest it has generated.

Burke said the handle (at)Pontifex was chosen because it not only means pope in Latin, but also bridge-builder, suggesting unity. How often will the pope tweet? "As often as he wants," Burke said, adding that he hoped the tweeting would be frequent and regular.

While the pope will push the button himself on Dec 12, subsequent tweets will be sent by someone in the Vatican's secretariat of state. They will, however, all be approved by the pope, officials said.

"It's always going to have his engagement and his approval," said Monsignor Paul Tighe, the No. 2 in the Vatican's social communications office. "Not physically, but from his mind."

Currently a host of Twitter accounts use the pope's name, purporting to be his personal account. The (at)Pontifex account, however, is certified as the only official papal Twitter feed, Tighe said.

Papal tweets will be sent simultaneously in English, French, Spanish, Portuguese, Italian, German, Polish and Arabic, Burke said. Monsignor Claudio Maria Celli, the president of the Vatican's social communications office, said he hoped to add Chinese.

He stressed that the papal tweets aren't to be considered infallible teachings, merely "pearls of wisdom" in the pope's own words.

The Vatican has been increasing its presence in social media, using YouTube channels and Facebook pages for special events and Twitter to engage believers and nonbelievers alike, particularly the young.

The Vatican decided against using a personal Facebook page for the pope because they thought it was too personal an interaction and would require more manpower to keep updated.


comment Note: By posting your comments here you agree to the terms and conditions of www.hindustantimes.com
blog comments powered by Disqus
Advertisement
HTC One X
Hands-on: HTC One X
We have been waiting for this ever since the phone was announced at the Mobile World Congress by HTC but we finally have the majestic HTC One X in our hands.
Cover lands on Google Play Store
The contextually aware lockscreen app, which always offers users the right app, at the right time, is finally out of private testing and is ready for the masses.
more »
Advertisement
Advertisement
Advertisement
Copyright © 2014 HT Media Limited. All Rights Reserved