Biblegateway.com and Porn

Posted on October 13, 2010

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Does it bother you to see the two paired together?

Since graduation, the closest that I’ve come to learning anything is memorizing the ingredients to Rigatoni Luganega.  Although I am extremely happy to be done with school (I celebrate daily not having homework), I have also lived with the fear that my brain started to atrophy on May 10, 2009.   This is why one of the best parts of my job has been learning.  I wanted to use my blog entry today to start processing some of the things I have been learning and thinking about.

There is something I have suspected always and known for a while.  The media lies to us. Dun Dun Dun! An epiphany, I know.

But seriously. There is something I would like to show you:  click here . If you take a minute to peruse the ownerships of News Corporation, you will see that even though we have a “choice” about which channel we watch (out of 999), and which music we listen to, and what movies we watch, and where we get our news, and which books we read, and which team we route for, we really have no choice over the identity of the producer.  Therefore, although you can choose to watch Fox News because they cover certain issues from a more conservative perspective, the certain issues that are covered are chosen by about 5 different companies.  They choose what is news and ignore what they wish.  This can lead to issues of silenced voices, smothered cultures, and ignored scandals.

The above paragraph may come as a surprise to some of you, and might be old news and incredibly redundant to others.  It’s something that I knew before working at TechMission, but it seemed like something too big and overarching to really affect me personally.  But the ramifications are so big that they affect even the smallest things.

Here is a more specific example of what I am talking about.  How many of you have visited Biblegateway.com?  Every time that I read a Bible verse on the fly or send a verse to somebody online, that’s the website I use.  In the past two years, Biblegateway.com went from being owned by a Christian non-profit to being owned by Zondervan.  No big deal, right?  No big deal, because  Zondervan produces most if not all Christian devotionals, translations of the Bible, and Christian Fiction.  But look up Zondervan on the site I mentioned earlier (click on the News Corporation section).  News Corporation is owned by Rupert Murdoch, the same man who owns Fox news, the same man who owns TiVo, HarperCollins… and BskyB- a hardcore porn channel. Does that change your view of Biblegateway.com?

At the best, this means Murdoch is simply motivated by money.  Obviously. He is a business man.  He wants money from his publishing companies, and Bibles certainly bring in money.  He wants money from his TV stations, and porn certainly brings in money.  Does it bother you to see the two paired together?  In the best case scenario, the purpose of Zondervan– and biblegateway.com– are purely motived by profit and not by bringing glory to God.

At the worst, it means that the ownership is even more purposeful, and perhaps more malicious, than good business.  What if the intentions behind the ownership of Zondervan, and biblegateway.com, are evil? Imagine the damage that can be done by a company whose worldview leads it to produce more porn than any other large corporation.

This is just one small example of one website whose ownership is extremely questionable.  How many other examples are there?  Look at the chart.  You would never purposely support a company whose morals you were strongly opposed to.  Yet how many websites, channels, and songs do you click on innocently that are indirectly tied to things that you abhor?

I do not have an answer to this, but I do think that everyone should be talking it, and yet I find America to be eerily silent on the matter.

Not me!
Farrell

Does it bother you to see the two paired together?

Since graduation, the closest that I’ve come to learning anything is memorizing the ingredients to Rigatoni Luganega.  Although I am extremely happy to be done with school (I celebrate daily not having homework), I have also lived with the fear that my brain started to atrophy on May 10, 2009.   This is why one of the best parts of my job has been learning.  I wanted to use my blog entry today to start processing some of the things I have been learning and thinking about.

There is something I have suspected always and known for a while.  The media lies to us. Dun Dun Dun! An epiphany, I know.

But seriously. There is something I would like to show you:  click here . If you take a minute to peruse the ownerships of News Corporation, you will see that even though we have a “choice” about which channel we watch (out of 999), and which music we listen to, and what movies we watch, and where we get our news, and which books we read, and which team we route for, we really have no choice over the identity of the producer.  Therefore, although you can choose to watch Fox News because they cover certain issues from a more conservative perspective, the certain issues that are covered are chosen by about 5 different companies.  They choose what is news and ignore what they wish.  This can lead to issues of silenced voices, smothered cultures, and ignored scandals.

The above paragraph may come as a surprise to some of you, and might be old news and incredibly redundant to others.  It’s something that I knew before working at TechMission, but it seemed like something too big and overarching to really affect me personally.  But the ramifications are so big that they affect even the smallest things.

Here is a more specific example of what I am talking about.  How many of you have visited Biblegateway.com?  Every time that I read a Bible verse on the fly or send a verse to somebody online, that’s the website I use.  In the past two years, Biblegateway.com went from being owned by a Christian non-profit to being owned by Zondervan.  No big deal, right?  No big deal, because  Zondervan produces most if not all Christian devotionals, translations of the Bible, and Christian Fiction.  But look up Zondervan on the site I mentioned earlier (click on the News Corporation section).  News Corporation is owned by Rupert Murdoch, the same man who owns Fox news, the same man who owns TiVo, HarperCollins… and BskyB- a hardcore porn channel. Does that change your view of Biblegateway.com?

At the best, this means Murdoch is simply motivated by money.  Obviously. He is a business man.  He wants money from his publishing companies, and Bibles certainly bring in money.  He wants money from his TV stations, and porn certainly brings in money.  Does it bother you to see the two paired together?  In the best case scenario, the purpose of Zondervan– and biblegateway.com– are purely motived by profit and not by bringing glory to God.

At the worst, it means that the ownership is even more purposeful, and perhaps more malicious, than good business.  What if the intentions behind the ownership of Zondervan, and biblegateway.com, are evil? Imagine the damage that can be done by a company whose worldview leads it to produce more porn than any other large corporation.

This is just one small example of one website whose ownership is extremely questionable.  How many other examples are there?  Look at the chart.  You would never purposely support a company whose morals you were strongly opposed to.  Yet how many websites, channels, and songs do you click on innocently that are indirectly tied to things that you abhor?

I do not have an answer to this, but I do think that everyone should be talking it, and yet I find America to be eerily silent on the matter.

Not me!
Farrell

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Posted in: Seriously