Telstra chief signs on for WYD

Describing the internet as an opportunity to spread the Gospel message, Telstra chief Sol Trujillo has announced that the company has signed a letter of intent to supply communications services for next year's World Youth Day.

Spruiking his company's products, Mr Trujillo told participants at the Catholic Church Administrators Conference in Melbourne that "as more people search for meaning in their lives the Catholic Church has an opportunity to take advantage of the scale and scope of ... next generation networks to spread the Gospel message amongst its brethren through the missions of the Church".

"It means that from the Archbishops to the Bishops to the Parish Priests the word of the gospel and the works of the church can be spread at much smaller cost on a much greater scale," the Telstra CEO added.

Under the agreement with World Youth Day coordinators, Telstra will provide phone and other services to the 300,000 extra people expected in Sydney for World Youth Day from 15-20 July next year.

"I think it's great we can explore innovative ways to use technology to broadcast the event to young people around the world," Mr Trujillo said.

"We can use SMSs, MMSs, webcasts, blogs and even mobile video calls so that more young people around the world can access and share this very special event."

"We intend to make World Youth Day shine by using our world-leading next generation infrastructure," he added.

But "we are just at the beginning of the (digital media) revolution," Mr Trujillo said.

"Underpinning all of what I've talked about today is the new paradigm of staying connected real-time."

"And as our world becomes less connected in our immediate geographic vicinity we can use technology to bring us back together," he said, citing the example a virtual Catholic church in the Palm Vegas Region operated by Fr Simoli in the virtual 3D game Second Life.

The Telstra boss also cited the Canadian diocese of Edmonton Catholic School Board as model of using up-to-date communications technology.

The diocese uses coordinated e-mail, calendars and public folders for administration and instruction across all schools.

"Technology support costs are down, and administrative productivity is up from reduced paperwork and speedier information delivery. Students use technology throughout the day to submit assignments, receive timely feedback from teachers and find learning resources," Mr Trujillo concluded.

Speaking Notes, Sol Trujillo, Church Administrators Conference, 19/4/07)
Network deal not close (Herald Sun, 20/4/07)
Preaching technology to church (Herald Sun, 20/4/07)
No deal imminent, says telstra chief (The Age, 20/4/07)

LINKS (not necessarily endorsed by Church Resources)
Church Administrators Conference 2007
Solomon Trujillo (Wikipedia)
World Youth Day 2008
Second Life
Second Life (Wikipedia)

Aust needs strong non-profit sector, priest says (CathNews, 13/2/07)
Priest wants "unprecedented" non-profit broadband plan (CathNews, 18/12/06)
Non-profits need leading technology, Jesuit media guru says (CathNews, 10/11/06)

20 Apr 2007

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