March 2011 |
“What I Learned at the National Religious Broadcasters Convention”
I like being a part of something that has my family history connected to it. I started attending the National Religious Broadcasters convention in 2002 when I was a junior in college. I did not realize it at the time, but my mom, uncle, and grandma had each served NRB’s first president (a family friend) while the organization was in its early years. Many (undisclosed) years later I too had the opportunity to attend the NRB convention as a student, volunteer staffer, and excited learner. I thank God for not only having the opportunity to be a part of an organization my family appreciates, but more so, a convention that has distinctly shaped me as a Christian media professional.
The annual NRB convention is a unique experience. In my seven years of attendance, I have shook hands with President George Bush; met numerous contemporary Christian heroes of the faith; sat in on valuable seminars about church media, video production, internet, and social media; connected with Christian media professionals who have encouraged and coached me; volunteered; served with two of our high school students; and annually discovered new cultural and technological shifts and how God is at work through it all.
I would like to share some of the insights from NRB 2011 that have been stirring within me:
1. Our country has made a significant cultural shift (in the last decade, but even more in the last couple of years). Christianity is no longer the driving moral compass. Tolerance, however, is.
2. Technology, specifically social media and new media, have made a much larger cultural shift than we may realize. Mass “broadcast” communication is out. Community-based “conversational” communication is in.
>>2a. Rather than disregard social media (or complain about it), we need to recognize the incredible opportunity to leverage God’s redemption story and our story of God’s grace through social media channels.
>>2b. As technology continues to increase its dominance, people will crave face-to-face communication more than ever. The Church, and the people of the church, have an incredible opportunity to use this desire for face-to-face relationships to really demonstrate care for people.
3. Media is no longer about the communicator. Its about them, not us.
4. The mobile device continues to increase in influence of how people communicate, connect to the internet, and do business.
5. We value content-creators who freely “share” their content. (missional technology)
6. People want to enter into and interact with the story, not just consume it. (Ex: 3D movies, mobile app games as advertising mediums, visual worship)
7. Prefer excellence over perfection