Digital world leaves some ‘hyperconnected and alone’, says Vatican official

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VATICAN CITY (CNS) — Good journalism must be creative and promote communication focused on dialogue, intelligence and helping to build active communities, said the prefect of the Vatican Dicastery for Communication.

Paolo Ruffini, the prefect, said the challenge of good journalism is to find new ways for a new type of communication by “focusing on dialogue rather than the marketing of ideas, on intelligence as a moral category rather than on the fanatical moralism of the mob”. ”

“It requires creativity, capable of reaching people where they live, of finding opportunities for listening, dialogue and meeting. We must return to the simplicity and enthusiasm of the Acts of the Apostles,” he said in his August 16 address to members of Signis, the World Catholic Association for Communication.

The Signis World Congress was taking place online and in person in Seoul, South Korea, from August 15-18, with the theme “Peace in the Digital World”. Vatican News published excerpts from Ruffini’s speech on August 16.

Ruffini reminded his audience that Pope Francis had commented on some of the problems with social media in his message for World Communications Day 2019. He said, quoting the pope, how these networks are not automatically synonymous with a community healthy; too often, their identity is “based on opposition to the other, to the person outside the group”.

Too often “we define ourselves on the basis of what divides us rather than what unites us, arousing mistrust and the manifestation of all prejudices” and “what should be a window on the world becomes a showcase for exhibiting narcissism personal,” he said, quoting the pope.

The paradox of today, he says, is that “we are hyperconnected and also alone”. The problem arises “when there is no more communication, only connection”.

“We need to question ourselves, to examine our personal and collective conscience,” he said, as well as to seek answers to questions such as: “How is it possible to be both hyperconnected and terribly alone? What is missing from our connection that can fill this loneliness, and that is strong enough to last over time?

“The only way to respond to the challenge of technology,” he said, “is not to regard it as an idol, but also not to demonize it. Not to believe that it is its job to redeem humanity” or that he will be the source of “his perdition.

He launched an appeal to all Catholic communicators, Catholic journalists and men and women of good will working “in the difficult and great field of communication, inviting them to be “protagonists of a new humanism, embodied in active communities and participatory. We can weave a new idea of ​​citizenship.

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Copyright © 2022 Catholic News Service/United States Conference of Catholic Bishops


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