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Corelation needs in the new media

Posted: Mon Dec 24, 2007 10:06 am
by Victor Neves-p40
Elder Ballard's call for members to participate in online discussions suggests the need for a new pamphlet, which should be available in print and online. The pamphlet might be titled something like "Sharing The Gospel Online" and would contain general guidelines for members who discuss the church online.

Instructions might include the following
sharing the Gospel in a loving manner
avoiding antagonism
sticking to correlated doctrines and materials
responding with Gospel answers

I've been discussing the Church in online forums since the early nineties and have seen a lot of unproductive, antagonistic "bashing." While guidelines won't prevent that, they might help direct the effort.

VN

Posted: Mon Dec 24, 2007 11:27 am
by russellhltn
Victor Neves wrote:Elder Ballard's call for members to participate in online discussions


Wow! To think that I'm ahead of the game for once. :D What talk was this? I don't remember it.

Posted: Mon Dec 24, 2007 11:41 am
by comstone-p40
Victor Neves wrote:Elder Ballard's call for members to participate in online discussions suggests the need for a new pamphlet, which should be available in print and online. The pamphlet might be titled something like "Sharing The Gospel Online" and would contain general guidelines for members who discuss the church online.



Though the intent is appropriate, the results would not be what we would hope. Consider that the Church has been trying for decades for members to be effective as member-missionaries ... and most are not. The fact that many on-line discussions are so antagonistic (and therefore completely ineffective) is a reflection of this lack of understanding. Recall Nibley's "Zeal without Knowledge..." Unfortunately, the BYUH (and BYU, BYUI) audience will often go out and cause more trouble. See many of the responses to letters to the editor regarding Romney's steps and missteps ... lots of smoke, little warmth.

Further, when those less-than-friendly discover that the Church has a "template" for on-line discussions, they'll continue their claims that SLC is all about controlling everything about members' lives, including their means of correspondence. Not a winable (sp?) situation.

So I doubt a pamphlet will do much good. Sorry for the pessimism.

BM

guidelines for guidelines sake?

Posted: Tue Dec 25, 2007 2:41 pm
by Victor Neves-p40
The format of the pamphlet would need to be unassailable, but that's not hard. We don't have an orthodoxy or catechism for doctrine, because we believe in ongoing personal and institutional revelation. We also receive repeated instructions to stay with the manual. The manuals, if I understand correctly, are reviewed by the correlation committee which operates under the direction of at least one Apostle.

Likewise, any kind of guidelines for online gospel discussions would need to depend on personal study and inspiration. Every lesson that I've seen recently starts with the instruction to "prayerfully study." Members of the church who share the gospel online need to be reminded to keep that instruction in mind. The world can't object to our belief that people should obtain the word before teaching it.

The online forums are BIG and they've been around for a while. I first saw alt.religion.mormon and soc.religion.mormon back in the early nineties. Those forums exist on the usenet and can be hard to find on the web, but reviewing them can lead to a broader understanding of the kinds of discussions members are having online.

The world might quibble with the fact that we have correlation and manuals, but that's our pattern. It's part of the order of things in the restoration.

Posted: Tue Dec 25, 2007 2:44 pm
by Victor Neves-p40
It was a commencement address at BYU Hawaii. Here's a link. The full text isn't there, just a short news article.

Posted: Tue Dec 25, 2007 3:07 pm
by Victor Neves-p40
RussellHltn wrote:Wow! To think that I'm ahead of the game for once. :D What talk was this? I don't remember it.


And here's the linkfor a transcript of the whole talk - assuming I'm clicking these buttons right.

Posted: Tue Dec 25, 2007 4:46 pm
by russellhltn
Victor Neves wrote:And here's the linkfor a transcript of the whole talk - assuming I'm clicking these buttons right.


You got it right. Thanks.