COMPENDIUM CULTURAL POLICIES AND TRENDS IN EUROPE
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Holy See/ 4.2 Specific policy issues and recent debates  

4.2.6 Media pluralism and content diversity

Due to the special nature of the Holy See and Vatican City, there is no place for diversity of media pluralism and content diversity. Such diversity occurs within the Church on the local level. The existing media directly depending on the Holy See are:

  • Vatican Radio. Established in 1931 in order to broadcast the words of the Pope, it is the only radio station in Vatican City. Although it has cultural, educational and musical programmes, its main purpose is broadcasting the Pope's teachings in various languages. Podcasting and RSS of its main programmes is available through its website http://www.105live.radiovaticana.org/;
  • Vatican Television Centre. It films and broadcasts material on the Supreme Pontiff's activities all over the world, and on Church events taking place within Vatican City. It is not a television station, but a television information agency and therefore has no regular broadcasting schedule. Its mission also includes the protection of rights over film archives and liaising as a television agency to collaborate with other organisations such as Eurovision and RAI;
  • The Vatican Film Library, (Filmoteca Vaticana). Since the origin of cinema, it has preserved film material covering the various activities of the Sovereign Pontiff and major events in the life of the Church;
  • The Vatican Web Page. This Internet site was created in 1995 and contains the speeches and documents of the Sovereign Pontiff, as well as those of the various bodies of the Holy See and Vatican City, especially the museums. The address is: http://www.vatican.va/;
  • The Vatican channel on YouTube. This offers informational coverage of the main activities of the Sovereign Pontiff Benedict XVI and the main Vatican events. It is updated daily. The images are produced by the Vatican Television Centre (CTV), the texts are supplied by Vatican Radio and by CTV. The video clips offer a presentation of the most authoritative position of the Catholic Church on the main questions of the world today. Links permit access to the complete texts and official documents cited. The address is: http://www.youtube.com/user/vatican;
  • The application Pope2You on Facebook. To better promote dialogue with the youth, the Church looks to the social networking site currently most used in the world, Facebook, which has over 200 million users, by opening a page called Pope to you (Pope2You), which is just the tip of the iceberg of events organised to mark the 43rd World Day of Social Communications. With a view to opening up to the new forms of communication and virtual community, the Holy See, more precisely Pope Benedict himself, has decided to use Web 2.0 by activating his own profile on Facebook to spread the Christian message. Thanks to the applications for Facebook downloadable from the site Pope2You, anyone can receive images of the Pope and his messages. The Pontifical Council for Social Communications is leading the project and is also about to launch an application for iPhone, which will let users keep up to date with news and information about the Pope in five different languages. The address is http://www.pope2you.net/.

Chapter published: 02-12-2009

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