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Technology
Twitter is gearing up to offer a new feature. You will soon be able to record and add short videos to your twitter feed. All within Twitter. Best Ministry Practices wrote about this new offering, that according to Twitter should be available in the first half of this year. According to Kevin Weil, a Twitter VP: “Aside from just watching video more easily on Twitter, you should be able to record, edit and share your own videos natively on Twitter too… Alongside short looping Vine videos, we think you’ll have fun sharing what’s happening in your world through native video.” Big whoop, you might say. But hold on. Is this the next BIG thing? Who knows. But you should be prepared, or at least thinking through how this might change things. How might your church use short-form video on social media? Short Announcements? Reminders to attend on Sunday? Promos? Follow-up sermon material? This could be a new venue for you to communicate with your peeps throughout the week. So… what do you think?  Is there a way to use this new Twitter feature to enhance your local ministry? Todd
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Technology
OK… match this up to the ‘things I never knew existed, but are kinda cool’ category. A toothbrush with bluetooth. Wow… never even imagined or thought of something like this. The iPhone or Android app will keep record of how long and how well you brush, and even has a timer.  You can also set your brushing goals and lets you listen to music whilest you brusheth your teeth. Future versions will allow you to see what parts of your mouth you brush the most and which parts you neglect. Could be kind of useful.  Especially for kids (as a diagnostic to help them brush better or just to make it fun for them). Makes me wonder though… how did someone come up with this? ‘Cause I’d never think about it. I wonder what really cool things the church could innovate if we just put on our thinking caps? What’s the last really cool ‘new thing’ or innovation in the church?  What is the church’s bluetooth tooth brush?
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Technology
Good stuff here. I remember when I started as a worship leader (we called them ministers-of-music back in the day), that the technology of choice was the overhead projector.  We were trippin’ on all the glitzy technology. I’m very thankful for technology; and for all the geeky gurus that make it happen every week.  I think you will have a greater appreciation too after watching this:    
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Technology
Lauren Hunter has shared a list of 12 church technology goals for your church for the year.  I think these are an excellent start for ANY church.  You don’t have to be a huge church to do these things… in fact, most are free or very low cost! And the thing I like about them is that they are measurable… and we all know that the things that are measured are the things that get done.  Here are the first six… then you can head over to Lauren’s blog for the other six. 12 Possible Church Technology Goals for 2012:
  1. Blog at least once a week.
  2. Update the church Facebook and Twitter accounts on a daily basis.
  3. Update the church website daily or weekly.
  4. Send regular email newsletters to congregation (include video if you can).
  5. Make better use of church management software to track involvement.
  6. Make sure to follow up with visitors as quickly as possible through email, snail mail, a phone call, or a visit.
Visit here to see the other six goals. What are YOUR church’s tech goals this year?  Do you have any?  Will you adopt any of these?
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Technology
Acts435.org.uk I don’t know of another website like this in the US. This is a creative ministry idea from the UK. People tell local churches their specific needs and it gets posted to the internet.  Then people can give to specific needs. Simple, innovative, and solves problems. How many requests for help do you get at your church, especially around the holidays.  Most churches don’t know how to help (and can’t help everyone).  This seems like a great solution. Maybe someone reading this would like to start something like this. You start it… I’ll help promote it! Todd
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Technology
This infographic from Tyndale University College and Seminary has a lot of great information.  Including, their top 4 reasons for churches to use technology: 1.  To enrich relationships/stay connected with members 2.  To reach the online community 3.  To evolve with the congregation 4.  To bring in new members Here’s the graphic.  What stands out to you? For a larger version of this graphic, please go here.   What stood out to you the most? And what’s the most interesting use of technology that your church has discovered as of late? Todd
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Technology
The percentage of emails opened on a mobile device has risen from just 4% in May 2009 to 20% in May 2011 while desktop client usage has declined by 11%. Webmail has shown the least change over two years, with a 4% decline. via Users abandoning desktop email clients for mobile, study reports – Mobile. Is this true for you? I have to say… it probably is for me.  I check my email all the time on my phone. Very rarely do I respond to email via my phone, unless: 1.  It’s urgent; or 2.  I will be away from my desktop/laptop for an extended period of time. How about you?  Do you rely more and more on your mobile device when it comes to email communication? Todd
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Trends
In a new Harris Interactive survey of 2300 adults, it was found that 74% say that the phone is still how they primarily keep in touch with friends.  And 81% said that the phone is their preferred method for keeping up with family members. 13% use video chat (ala Skype) to talk with family members, 9% to talk to friends, and just 6% to talk with their significant other. When it comes to work colleagues though, the preference is email:  43% like email for that use, 33% use voice, 12% would text, and just 6% use social networking sites to correspond with co-workers. So… what’s your preferred method of communication? My guess is that if they skewed the study to 13-20 year olds, it would have a vastly different outcome.  I think texting and social media (ala Facebook) would be tops. What do you think? Todd
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Trends
Many adults and teens would like to receive guidance from their churches on media and technology, a Barna Group study revealed. The problem is, most of them aren’t getting any. The study shows that most parents and tweens/teens (children ages 11 to 17) expect churches to address technology, but “most families are not getting any coaching or assistance when it comes to integrating technology into their family life.” “Technology is shaping family interactions in unprecedented ways, but we seem to lack a strategic commitment to the stewardship of technology,” Barna Group President David Kinnaman says in a report explaining the results. (Via Charisma Magazine.) So… is the church missing the boat here.  Do parents really want to hear advice on technology from the church?  Should the church be helping people navigate the computer/tech world.  Why or why not?
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