Friday, October 21, 2011

Online Community

Religion penetrates every aspect of society, thus the creation of the Internet was no exception. From the time the Internet was first invented, religious websites with forums and chat room discussions have existed.  As time and technology have progressed, the Internet has now become a way for people with like faiths and beliefs to come together and worship, forming religious online communities.  This week’s blog posts focuses on a specific online community, ( It is a nondenominational online community where Christians can fellowship in a friendly and clean environment, whose purpose is to provide a “feature rich online community.”  Community is sustained by communication.  Much like the Church St. Pixels in Hutchings article, operates in the same way, both websites offer profiles, chatrooms, forums encouraging the members to communicate, and both expect a level of respect from the users. This encourages community over great distance and space, what is also referred to as a loose community.  The structure of is centered on a key idea of keeping the focus of the online community clean, friendly, and safe.  Members are encouraged to communicate with one another on topics relevant to religion.  The website does not turn down nonbelievers but it is centered on Christianity and it expects the upmost respect of its users.  The offline impact this might have is that because it is a nondenominational website, this means there is no central, core belief or practice bounding these individuals together.  There is a sense of freedom, that the users can come together and discuss topics without any type of authority. By allowing such unrestricted communication, this could cause some people to question certain beliefs or traditions.  

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