I was already having a digital-doo-dah social media day when I learned via Twitter that the Vatican had issued a new encyclical from Pope Benedict XVI, “Truth, Proclamation and the Authenticity of Life in the Digital Age.” The tweet from @philritchie, sometimes drummer and Canon of Chelmsford Cathedral in rural Essex, arrived while I was mulling over a question Parker Palmer had posted just a bit earlier on his Facebook page about the relationship between violent words and images in broadcast media and violent acts.
I’d added my two cents to the developing conversation, citing Douglas Rushkoff’s quip that “They don’t call it ‘programming’ for nothing,” and noting that the unreflective consumption of media is a characteristic of the Broadcast Age that doesn’t necessarily characterize interactive media engagement in the Digital Age. Then I hopped over to Twitter, where I gathered The Rev. Canon Ritchie’s news and took a quick look at his insightful blog post on the Pope’s letter. While I printed out the encyclical (I can be very old school like that, too), I toggled back over to Facebook, where I saw, to my great delight, that Parker Palmer had “liked” my comment.