Social Media Pontiff - Pope2You
May 22nd, 2009 | by Adam Ostrow
If Barack Obama is the YouTube President, then Pope Benedict XVI might just be the social media pontiff. The Pope launched a YouTube channel last year, and now, he’s getting onto Facebook, with the launch of his own application, called Pope2You.
Pope2You actually encompasses more than just a Facebook app. There’s now a website that links followers to the existing YouTube Channel, the new Facebook application, and an iPhone app as well.
I’ve found the Facebook app a bit buggy in trying to test it out this morning, but the Vatican describes it like this:
“Pope2You for Facebook lets you receive the messages of Pope Benedict XVI through the most important social network of the world. So you can meet the Pope on Facebook, listen to his words, see his pictures, receive his messages of congratulations through “virtual postcards”. The postcards can be sent to your “friends” on Facebook and the application can be shared with anyone.”
Meanwhile, the iPhone application seems like an extension of the YouTube channel, used mostly as a broadcast medium for the Pope’s messages:
“The H2Onews application for the iPhone and iPod Touch brings you timely, insightful news about the life of the Church in the world. In collaboration with the Vatican Television Center and Vatican Radio,H2Onews connects you with video and audio news from the Vatican.”
As Pete wrote back when the Vatican joined YouTube, “launching a channel may be a positive first step, but new media is not a broadcast medium: it’s an interactive one.” The new applications seem like a lot more broadcasting, but the ability to share things with friends through the Facebook app is a move in the right direction, and could help expand the online community that the Church clearly sees as an opportunity to bring its members closer together.
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