Saturday 13 January 2007
Peddling the Gospel
It's a peculiar thing, but the Churches of God are, despite their reduced circumstances, one of the more visible presences on the World Wide Web.
The proof of that assertion is in those irritating Google ads that tie in website content with whatever wares a retailer has to peddle. It doesn't have to be a specifically COG association either; chances are that if the keyword is Bible, prophecy, Sabbath or something similar, Google will deliver a smorgasbord of the usual suspects.
Example: the current AW poll results are surrounded by Google ads. I'm not knocking it, because it means the service is free (or alternatively, the COG advertisers shell out for it, which is a satisfying thought.) But even when the text of the poll has nothing particularly COGish about it, Papa Pack turns up to the party, usually just across from UCG. And, horror of horrors, Hulme seems to have finally “caught on” in a bid to attract traffic to his Vision website, and even Ron Weinland is promoting his brand of soon-coming doom.
So what? Well, I don't notice the Mormons using this strategy, or the Jehovah's Witnesses, or the SDAs. Maybe they're just not as desperate. On the other hand, maybe Pack and friends have hit on a really successful way of marketing the One True Gospel!
Meanwhile Don Billingsley has a new magazine for his faithful flock (who, as you can see, feature on the cover.) Something to put on the coffee table alongside The Good News, Vision, Tomorrow's World, The Real Truth, The Philadelphia Trumpet, The... oh, you get the idea. The new entrant is called The Philadelphia Remnant. Nifty title huh! Now to pick up a few subscribers maybe someone could suggest he spend some of the generous tithe money on those cool little Google ads...