Being Authentic Online aka "The Dogma Delusion" @timeshighered

The Dogma Delusion
The Times Higher Education (formerly Supplement) has been the reading material of choice for UK academics since 1971, and this week THE has led with a story (supplemented with editorial comment) summarised as: “The notion of a ‘war’ between science and religion is a media-friendly but profoundly inaccurate model for scholars’ many-hued and nuanced views of God, faith and doubt.”

Why is this relevant to #Bigbible?
The BigBible project is intended to bring many people together, all reading and discussing materials within the same timeframe, and as a part of that, we are encouraging a confidence in engaging with the online world. For many years THE would only have been seen by those within academic institutions (or seeking to join them), but with a decision to make all their material publicly available online, THE has cemented its position as a thought leader in the sector, and opened the material, and therefore the debate up to a much wider audience.

So how does that work?
I received my paper copy of THE in the post this morning (yes, I love paper copies!), thought this story would be of interest to those that I talk to on my blog (small but steady readership of about 650 per month), so I blogged about the story, with a few extra links. This material then autopublishes to my Twitter (around 2500 followers) and Facebook (around 900 ‘friends’) accounts. So, my paper copy now has a potential readership of 4000 people (several with similar interests), who can now join in the debate.

Why might it work?
Social networking, by its very name, is really about building up relationships. Formerly, THE would have published its article, and a week later, there would have been a slight opportunity to reply via ‘Readers Letters’.  Now, people get an opportunity to respond by blogging about stories, by commenting on the website (6 comments already on THE), and by circulating this more widely. This only works, however, because those engaged in the debate are genuinely interested… authenticity is key to online content. I wrote about the story because I work within a Higher Education context, I’ve always been interested in debates re: religion/science, and I use my personal blog pretty freely to talk about anything I fancy… and the ‘tags’ and ‘categories’ in my blog give a good idea of the range of my interests.

About bigbible

The #BigBible Project. Educating in the digital spaces, creating 'bigger Bible conversations' between #digidisciple(s). Look out for #bigread14.