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Some questions and suggestions to all commoners

I’m just back from the 2013 Economics and Commons Conference in Berlin. A great event, in which I took lots of general notes synthesized in another post that I’ll publish tomorrow. This one, instead, contains just questions and suggestions from me that I already shared at the conference, or I’d like to share with everybody interested in Commons. A separate post contains my critique to certain arguments against copyright I heard at the same conference.

The departure of Benedict XVI? Not on this computer, sorry

In the modern world, more and more documents and services are made available in digital format. Even if it can be a source of huge progress for all humankind, this phenomenon often happens through technologies which become obsolete in a few years, are incompatible with each other or cannot be afforded by everybody. This fact creates serious obstacles to a really free communication among people, to the preservation of the cultural and spiritual heritage of humankind and to the diffusion of the Word of God.

The paragraph above is the introduction of the Eleutheros Manifesto that I and other Catholics wrote almost seven years ago. Today, February 28th, 2013, Pope Benedict’s last meeting in Vatican provides a perfect example of those obstacles we were, and remain, worried about. Because not everybody can follow it online, not from its source at least.

The real effect of the Internet on Catholicism (or any other religion)

The Online Loser Guide that I just wrote was born also as a reaction to a vision of the Internet (haven for perverted and terrorists, huge time-wasting toy or mere work tool) very limited and narrow-minded. A proof that the effects of digital technologies are much deeper is in how they are influencing the religious sphere, in ways still largely ignored by traditional, mainstream media and by many blogs. The following paragraphs contain some evidence of this trend in Catholicism, but I’d guess that the same general concept is valid for any other religion (more on this at the end).