Live-streaming: Live-chat| Tech, No Babel

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On today’s Tech, No Babel: Live-streaming: Live-chat

There’s a danger in having a live-chat on your church’s live-stream. In a very real way, you’re giving up control of the creation of some of the content on your church’s site to total strangers. This can be really scary to many churches, but there are some very good reasons you’d want to do it and ways to minimize the danger, too.

If you want to foster community in your online campus, consider a live-chat to go with your live-stream. Sure, there’s a danger, but the truth is that community is worth the risk.

When you’re looking for live-chat software, look for something that can use a facebook or twitter sign up in addition to creating a login. This way people watching your church service don’t need to remember another login and password. It also means that they’re less likely to act like trolls because their real names are associated with their chat.

It’s nice to have a moderation function so that people can keep chat civil. Also, it’s nice to be able to have a profanity filter. With some of these filter, the content is untouched, but the offending word is replaced with something silly, like “daisy.”

When it comes to chat moderators, don’t just recruit whoever is interested. Look for mature believers with a heart of service and the ability to shepherd.

I think of a good mod like a dog. They’re loving and loyal, until there’s a sign of danger and then they spring into action, ready to protect the church.

Chat can really connect people and foster community. Do what you can to include it in your strategy for live-streaming ministry.

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Tech, No Babel is a weekly podcast premiering every Thursday at 11a eastern (-5 UTC), 8a pacific on http://churchtechcast.com. Watch it and join the chat then.

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Paul Alan Clifford, M.Div.

Paul Alan Clifford, M.Div. has been a tech volunteer with Quest Community Church in Lexington, KY since 2000 and is the founder of TrinityDigitalMedia.com, llc. He became part of the technology in ministry team when his church’s attendance was around 200 in one Sunday service and has witnessed it’s growth to 5,200 average weekly attendance in one Saturday service, four Sunday services in one online and two physical campuses. He literally wrote the book on podcasting in churches, twitter in churches, & servant-hearted volunteering, as well as writing various articles for publications like “Church Production” and “Technologies for Worship” magazines.