Using Media

An independent audio player review
Author: Richard Margetts

The Story Teller from MegaVoice is the most affordable of all the pocket-sized solar-powered audio players available at the moment. It’s also one of the most lightest and simple to use, with a single 4-way button. Sound quality is excellent as is battery life, and the volume is impressive for a pocket-sized player. Files can be copied onto it using a proprietary USB cable and MegaVoice software.

As its name indicates, the Story Teller is ideal for containing audio stories or any other Scripture content when you have less than 10 hours to distribute. It is not designed for whole New Testaments or situations where you want to arrange audio files in hierarchies of books and chapters.

Download the PDF file below for the full review.  [more...]

Published by: Barna Group (2013)

The Millennial generation of young people are known as "digital natives". According to recent research carried out by the Barna Group in the USA:

"the most common way Millennials are blending their faith and technology is through digital reading of Scripture. It’s an escalating trend, considering there are just as many YouVersion (the free Bible phone app) downloads as there are Instagram downloads. And BibleGateway.com has become one of the top Christian websites today."

The research found that:

"Seven out of 10 of practicing Christian Millennials (70%) read Scripture on a screen. One-third of all Millennials says they read sacred Scripture on a phone or online, demonstrating how broadly the digital trends are shaping this generation."

In addition, 38% of practicing Christian Millennials said they search the Internet to verify something a faith leader has said. This might be during a sermon, as many bring their smartphones or tablets to church with them.  [more...]

The Most Common Avenue to Increased Scripture Engagement
Author: T. Wayne Dye
Published by: International Journal of Frontier Missions (26.3 Fall 2009)

The choice of medium can make a difference, and better artistic quality enhances any communication. However, the most important quality is how relevant the message seems to be to the lives of its hearers. If a hearer (or reader or viewer) thinks the message can make an important difference in his life, he will make an effort to listen, even if the quality is poor. Conversely, if he thinks it says nothing personally relevant, he will ignore even the best presented message. This principle of personal relevance is critical to communication.

Wayne Dye expands upon his third condition for Scripture Engagement:

Accessible forms: People are able to read the Scriptures or hear them from others or by listening to electronic media.

The article describes different ways of making the Scriptures more accessible: storying, literacy, local performing and visual arts, audio recordings, cell phones and video.  [more...]

Un manuel d’utilisation pour l’éditeur audio numérique Audacity
Authors: Fina Linan, Richard Margetts

This is the updated and expanded 2014 French version of How to do recording on your computer, an in-depth beginner's manual for recording with Audacity.

Scripture engagement practitioners across the Francophone world are using Audacity to record Scripture portions, Bible stories, radio programmes and Scripture songs. This 140-page manual can be used as a self-teaching aid or as part of a training workshop.

It covers subjects such as the choice of recording equipment, recording and editing audio, mixing multiple tracks and reducing background noise. The French version has an extended appendix on troubleshooting sound recording and playback problems with different Windows operating systems.  [more...]

Author: Lawson Murray
Published by: Scripture Union Canada, 2013

In the Jump Into the Word blog, Lawson Murray asks how the digital age will influence Bible engagement.

He makes a list of possible effects:

  • "the Bible will be read in multiple formats in an ever emerging variety of forms on a growing range of devices
  • availability and access to different Bible versions and translations will continue to increase
  • greater access to audio Bibles and podcasts may help us become better “hearers” of the Word
  • sharing thoughts and insights about the Bible may increase due to social networks like facebook and Linkedin
  • interactive software programs/systems, hypertext, blogs, posts and webinars uniquely facilitate biblical study and reflection
  • sharing favourite or meaningful verses will increase due to texting and tweeting
  • the individual’s opportunity and capacity to understand and interpret the Scriptures will increase
  • missions could prosper because nations closed to the Gospel will find it more difficult to restrict the availability of biblical texts
  • the Scriptures are readily available in any language or translation to anyone on earth with a smart phone
  • Scripture memorization may decline because Google, Bible Gateway, You Version and such make it easy to look up a passage or text
  • people will become significantly less likely to buy printed copies of the Bible
  • reading Scripture within a contemplative framework may decline
  • sequential reading will decline due to the fact that reading on the web develops inclinations to skip around, dip and dabble, browse or scan information
  • tendencies to read the Bible in short fast bursts will increase
  • concentration and meditation on the Scriptures will suffer because of what Cory Doctorow has called “an ecosystem of interruption technologies” (animations, hyperlinks, live feeds, pop-ups and so on)
  • qualitative depth of reading will be sacrificed for reading geared to a quantitative scope
  • e-books may augment a predisposition to uncouple content from form which may lead to tendencies to view the Scriptures as something detached from their incarnational form – the textual equivalent of Cartesian dualism
  • the role of the local church in the transmission and interpretation of the Scriptures will decline"

What do you think? Read the full article over at the Jump Into The Word blog and leave your comments.  [more...]

Viability, reproducibility, and long term results
Author: Gregory Fisher

"We wanted the research to address fairly both the positive impact and the challenges facing the FCBH program... This research took a brutally honest look at our own program, and found factual evidence to support our contention that audio scriptures are a valuable tool for use in making disciples in oral cultures."

Greg Fisher is the Regional Manager for Africa for Hosanna/Faith Comes By Hearing. In this 43-page ebook, he describes the methodology and results of a recent research project looking into the FCBH listening group programmes in Africa.

He asks: "What use had the end user made of the FCBH program? We knew what had been introduced into the field through our trainers, but, how had the program actually been used? In what interesting ways was it contextualized in different areas of Africa? What long term impacts would the end users of the program report to our researchers? We knew the long term impacts we hoped to see; however, we wanted to know the impacts the end user reported to help us to measure impacts hoped for against actual impacts seen."

The ebook is available as a download from Smashwords.  [more...]