The Ever Changing Facebook

One of the main ways we communicate at Holy Nativity Church is through Facebook.  However, Facebook change the way things work every five minutes.  One of the most irritating changes has been the way they use images in Facebook events.  Graphic design can communicate so much more than the written word – this is why the contributions I make to Anglican Meme’s get hundred’s of hits more than articles on my blog.  The changes to Facebook event images mean that different parts of the image are displayed on different parts of the site.  There is now no image you can create where you can know for certain that all of the image will be shown in the different boxes around the site.

I discovered this template that shows which parts of the image will appear in each image box around Facebook.  You get emailed a link to the template and it has handy guidelines.  I’ve had one go at making a Pentecost image that fits.  It seems to display exactly as the creator says.

Pentecost

Online 9 Lessons and Carols 2012

Online-Carols 2012 Small copy

Some of you may remember that last year there was an Online Nine Lessons and Carols Service.  This year is no different and Metanoia are involved in it once again.  Check out all of the details over at Nine Lessons and Carols 2012!  Check out the hashtag #onlinecarols2012 too!

I also updated Metanoia’s facebook url so it matches every other online presence we have. Facebook’s original policy of never allowing you to change your name has been relaxed to “OK, we’ll let you change it but only once”.  If you have any links, they may need updating.

http://www.facebook.com/metanoiauk

Winterval

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Over on Facebook I shared an article about Fox News’ “fight” for a “traditional Christmas”. Pat challenged me to make a meme. Challenge accepted!

It would seem that in the USA they’re having fun and games over who is allowed to party. Some angry theists are being taken to court by angry antitheists about who is allowed to have a party. Lots of cava is being spilled and people are crying over it.

Those of you who know me well will know I’m well up for Christmas and will be partying like its going out of fashion! But when you are a priest and have to hold the liturgical life of the local church it becomes part of you. As the article explains, Christian celebrations in december begin with Advent. So I will be partying but we’ll be doing it at Christmas. For now it’s Advent.

And this is the UK. No one is banning Christmas. That’s just a sneaky attempt every year by racists to recruit people to their cause.

Happy advent!

Personalisation – The Internet Filter Bubble and Facebook

This Ted Talk came from Carole reminding me of a blog I wrote for the Big Bible site about Theological Ghettos.  The way the internet works at the moment disturbs me as it edits out the things it believes I don’t want to see.  Google shows me what I want to see.  An algorithm decides what my world should look like.  Google essentially feeds me pictures of Mother Theresa, Desmond Tutu and Eddie Van Halen.  That kind of thing.  Give the people what they want!  And why not?

Facebook recently introduced a change to the way it works.  It has started to push content to your friends when you click “like” or comment upon a post.  I assume this means that every time I click like on a Star Wars meme is is pushed through to some of my friends.  As they are friends with me they must clearly be interested in the same things as I am – this is the logic that Facebook is employing.

This has shattered my internet filter bubble.  The world now looks a little different than before.  In the past week I have discovered that a “friend” of a “friend” likes the EDL.  I’ve seen numerous racist memes.  I’ve discovered that there is a more unpleasant underbelly to the society I am part of.  A less pleasant world that I was happily living without.  No doubt my friends have discovered that I talk about ‘vicar things’ a lot more than they thought previously.

It won’t come as a surprise to you to discover that I am “politically liberal” and so are a large proportion of my friends.  However, Facebook has just let everyone’s guard down.  Everyone is now less able to hide “the real you” from the world of Facebook unless they choose not to engage with it.  Every click potentially outs you as the person who “likes” pictures of fluffy kittens.  Alternatively you may find your more sinister side on display for the world to see as you are “outed” as a secret Belieber.

Guest Post

This month my guest post over at bigbible.org.uk has the word “Cathedral” in the title. This took me by surprise as much as everyone else.

If you want to know why I would be mentioning a Cathedral in a post, why not check it out.

Discipleship in the Online World

Here are some wise words from CyberSten.  What do you think?  Is the online world fraught with danger?

The Illusive Changingworship

They seek him here, they seek him there….

Many apologies for my apparent lack of presence on the blog for the past month.  I’ve got a note from my mum and this is what it says:

Dear internet,

Please excuse Robb’s absence in the last few weeks.  He had a very busy time with Christmas and then he went on holiday.  Since he has been back he has been back in the swing of things with the parishes he works with.  He has also been having all sorts of interesting conversations about some exciting projects in the future.

We’ve been really busy getting on with things.  During our holiday we decided that we would try to prioritise our time a bit better in the future and try to spend less time on trivial stuff.  One of the things we love is film and television but we’re trying to cut out the nonsense.  It’s one thing dedicating an hour to an episode of Game of Thrones but another watching Home and Away.

There has been a lot going on with Silverthorn under the surface.  With two members of the band having second children there has been less gigging going on but we’ve still been pushing on.  Whilst we were on holiday Ruth and I spent a couple of weeks writing new material for the band and learning some new material.  We’ve been looking at our web presence and should have a new site in the next week or two.  We’ve also been visiting a lot of new venues and sorting out a programme of gigs from Easter.  It’s all up on the facebook page for now.  Hopefully before then we will be able to get some recording done and release some songs.

We’ve also been having some good talks about future events with Metanoia and the Rock Mass.  There are a couple of possible big projects for later on in the year and we will let you know more when the details have been firmed up.  The main thing we’re hoping to do is write a new Eucharistic setting in the next couple of months.

Needless to say, it has all been very busy with Church and also the stuff we do in our spare time.  Hopefully we will have more to report soon.

Christmas Day!!

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The Advent Calendar Conspiracy – Christmas Eve

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The Advent Calendar Conspiracy – Day 27

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