Consumer-Generated Church

kinnon —  September 27, 2005 — Leave a comment

There is a meme developing about the inappropriateness of the phrase “consumer-generated media” or “consumer-generated content” as Terry Heaton discusses in his post today. Terry wants to call the content of the blogosphere, PMR for “Personal Media Revolution”. Blogads founder, Henry Copeland wants to call it “immedia” as he states in his Online Media Daily article, Consumer Generated Media is an Oxymoron.

Calling blogs consumer-generated media is like calling sex the “clothless generation of heat, musk and mucus.” The essential excitement and motivation just doesn’t come through, does it?

Unfortunately, the words “consumer-generated media” aren’t just misleading, they put things exactly backwards.

First, forget the word consumer. These folks are now participants, both in the news cycle and the creation of new products.

Generated? This stuff isn’t generated, it’s lived. Bloggers and podcasters are speaking from their hearts and passions, directly with their peers.

So what about the consumer-generated church. Well, first off, if you do a Google search you won’t find the phrase – at least not until this post is up. But the same reality exists – Christian bloggers & podcasters are participating in church conversations whether invited or not.

We are talking about the Kingdom, asking questions and answering them. The command and control structure of the “modern church” no longer functions in the post-modern world. You may choose to ignore us, but our thoughts are pixels on your screens. For a simple taste go here, here, here, here and here. And to see some leaders who get it, go here, here and here.

The Cluetrain Manifesto‘s 95 theses end with these two:

94. To traditional corporations, networked conversations may appear confused, may sound confusing. But we are organizing faster than they are. We have better tools, more new ideas, no rules to slow us down.
95. We are waking up and linking to each other. We are watching. But we are not waiting.

Just change “traditional corporations” to “modern church leadership”.

This is not a battle. We want to “conspire” with leaders in the church. To breath together the awe inspiring creativity of the whole Body of Christ. We are no longer consumers of the Church of the Controlled and Entertained. We are passionate participants in what the Spirit is doing in the earth. Narnia’s Aslan is on the move. We aren’t interested in being spectators.

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A television editor, writer & director since 1978. A Christian since 1982. More than a little frustrated with the Church in the West since late in the last millennium.

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