Meditations (Web)Church

A year (and a bit) in the life of NewSpring's first Web pastor

blogging the icampus rollout

with 2 comments

I’m a little more than 2 weeks into the odyssey of Internet campus pastordom, and I’m neck deep in working on our roll-out plan for the alpha launch of our site in January.

Naturally, there’s a lot of curiosity about what’s involved in building a web church, from church staff as well as friends and family. Everyone has a single question: What does that mean?

That’s the reason our team thought it would be good if we blogged through the launch process. It might help folks be a part of the process, and it would be great to get your early feedback.

Obviously, we’re not pioneering anything, at least in this early phase. Dozens of churches now boast online worship appointment experiences and more than 100 churches at least exploring the idea, based on today’s Leadership Networkcall on the subject.

But my biggest take away so far is that beyond the church world, it’s still an idea in search of general acceptance.

Given our aggressive deadline, it had been more or less decided before I got on board to launch with a core set of features:

  • Worship and message, including pre-recorded video segments from internet campus pastor;
  • public chat room
  • IM private prayer
  • prayer/praise wall
  • interactive map showing location of online attenders

As I’ve reviewed more than two dozen campuses now operating, it seems that’s something of a standard feature set. That’s not necessarily a bad thing, if it works. After all, no one has to or should apologize because a church has four walls and a roof, a worship set, a message etc.

We’re interested in following an iterative development process, where we invest a little, learn a lot, and make changes based on what seems to be working and what doesn’t.

Over the next few posts, I’ll try and share as much as possible about the thinking process — and our trajectory — on each of the elements above. And I may reveal a “surprise” element that we think has the potential to be our distinctive, in the early stages, at least if it doesn’t suck.

(P.S. If anyone has ideas about what to call this, other than an iCampus, we’re all ears! And maybe we’ll send you a special prize if its what we decide to launch with.)

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Written by NickCharalambous

November 12, 2008 at 2:51 pm

Posted in web campus

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2 Responses

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  1. […] LifeChurch.tv’s beta test of its new icampus. We noticed that all the main components of the site we were building were practically identical, right down to the open, public chat and the map showing global […]

  2. […] LifeChurch.tv’s beta test of its new icampus. We noticed that all the main components of the site we were building were practically identical, right down to the open, public chat and the map showing global […]


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