Elders + Social Media

While senior centers, assisted living facilities, and organizations focused on mature adults have been providing computing classes for years, many have recently added "how to" sessions on Facebook, Twitter, and blogging.  Julie Andrews recently wrote about some of the benefits older adults experience when they use social media, including increased connectivity to family and friends. So What? Church is a community.  It should also be concerned with connecting people to one another both Read More …

Facebook, Retirees, and Church

Robert Saler, Research Fellow and administrator with the Center for Pastoral Excellence at Christian Theological Seminary in Indianapolis, recently blogged about how his experience as a pastor of a congregation comprised primarily of retirees challenged his assumptions about their use of social media.  As a younger pastor, he entered the parish assuming that leveraging Facebook as a part of the congregation's ministry would require heavy lifting by young adults.  In his experience, those over Read More …

Social Media Benefits the Homeless

A recent study conducted by Art Jipson, a sociologist and criminologist at the University of Dayton, found that "social media  . . . tear down economic and geographic barriers to help homeless people connect to their families and support networks."  More specifically, Jipson learned that homeless people leverage free services like Facebook and Twitter to find food, shelter and job services, and to keep up with family and friends. All they need is a smart phone or public library with Internet Read More …

Religious Engagement via Social Media

While America remains a country with high levels of belief in God, most Americans are not talking about religious matters via social media.  According to a recent (July 2012) survey of 1,026 American adults: 13% have downloaded a religious podcast of a sermon or listened to a sermon online 11% have posted status updates about being in church 10% have used a cell phone to take pictures or record video during worship 6% belong to one or more religious groups on Facebook 5% follow one Read More …

Celebrating Social Media Day

Today (June 30) is Mashable's third annual Social Media Day. Several cities (including Tampa) have officially joined the celebration. Individuals can participate by  participating in one of over 400 meetups and/or joining the conversation on Twitter using the hashtag #smday ( to view the live stream of tweets simply click here). So What? Social media is changing the way we connect with each other.  It is a frequent topic here at sowhatfaith: 15% of all posts are categorized as Read More …

Goodbye Facebook – Hello Twitter

People's social media usage habits while working are changing.  According to the latest research by Palo Alto Networks, during the last six months (November 2011 to May 2012) the percentage of time workers spent on social networking sites shifted: Facebook: down 17% (from 54% to 37%) Twitter: up 10% (from 11% to 21%) Tumblr: up 9% (from 1% to 10%) So What? In only six months, the percentage of time people spent using Twitter at work doubled and the percentage of time they spent using Read More …

Facebook Changed Your E-mail Address

I was not as engaged in social media yesterday as I am most days, but noted one recurring theme: Facebook changed everyone's e-mail address.  If you don't already know, be advised that your new e-mail address appearing on your timeline is an @facebook.com account. If you would like to restore your prior account simply Go to your profile page Click on About Click on Edit in Contact Info Click on the menu beside each e-mail address listed and choose your desired setting So What? I Read More …

Facebook Bible/Book Study?

Many congregations offer fewer opportunities for adult discipleship during the summer months.  With more and more adult learning and growth opportunities moving from an on campus (church building, someone's home, or a coffee shop) to either a blended (part on campus and part online) or online format, perhaps summer is the ideal time for your congregation to try something new online (or expand its existing efforts). There are so many possible ways to begin that many people get hung up Read More …

Review of Viral

Meet the Author Leonard Sweet is the E. Stanley Jones professor of evangelism at Drew University and visiting distinguished professor of Evangelism at George Fox University, was voted one of the 50 Most Influential Christians in America, and continues to write and speak prophetically about the church.  An ordained United Methodist pastor, Sweet has authored over 20 books and 600 articles, and is perhaps best known for his forward thinking ideas about the church.  For more information, check Read More …

Facebook’s Future Viability

Facebook is everywhere I turn lately.  I continue to encounter: news, news and more news about and leading up to the IPO; blogs and news stories on how the Instagram acquisition will not happen soon as was originally indicated; information that all is not well with online ad revenues, especially compared to Google; and people who are passionate about the future of Facebook, especially from those favoring both extremes. With this in mind I was intrigued to learn the results of the Read More …