On occasion of the 45th World Media Day, Pope Benedict XVI gave a diagnostic of the world of communications and some outlines of how they should be used ethically. The Pope did not mention Facebook directly, but certainly alluded to social media and the latest technologies. In the positive the Pope certainly highlighted the great capacity that modern internet communication has, the potential for friendship and information, and for transmitting the Gospel, values and ideals. Consistent with his message, the Pope recently aired on Vatican TV and now YouTube in an address to the Universidad Santo Tomas in Manila, the oldest in Asia, on the importance of faith and reason. See below.
Also the Pope warned of the dangers of dispersonalization, manipulation of emotions, monopolization of views, and inauthenticity. Ultimately, no communication can replace that of direct human contact. Since in this day and age, almost everyone uses the internet as a source of communication, even the most die-hard nostalgic environmentalists (see this bizarre article on paleo diets), the Pope affirms there is a “Christian way of being present in the digital world”. To find out more, read the full Pope’s address here.