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Vatican newspaper: reflections on future of Catholic publishing

Catholic World News - June 07, 2011

In an essay that appeared in the June 6-7 edition of L’Osservatore Romano, the director of the Madrid-based Biblioteca de Autores Cristianos reflected upon the challenges facing Catholic publishers in the digital age.

“When printing was invented, the publication of books was controlled by a king, by the universities or in the hands of professional printers,” writes Jorge Fernandez Sangrador. “And if a new idea was born, a new book was written, so that the ideas of others expressed before or at the same time remained in other books. The objective of this was to allow for a permanence of a thought upon which, through integration or opposition, culture was constructed.”

He adds:

With the advent of the electronic book, how is this function exercised? How is the authenticity of a text of the Word of God, of the prayers of the Church or the Catechism guaranteed? The written word, guarded by the Church, needs to be transmitted in all of its purity to future generations. Decisive steps are now needed to clarify how to provide this service to the truth in an electronic universe.

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  • Posted by: Lahrye - Jun. 08, 2011 8:15 AM ET USA

    This is something I never thought about, yet being in the midst of the digital media age. The lines that really moved my normally silent fingers. "a new book was written, so that the ideas of others expressed before or at the same time remained in other books. The objective of this was to allow for a permanence of a thought upon which, through integration or opposition, culture was constructed.”Since so much can be 'cut & pasted' thoughts, themes can be changed and distributed via internet.

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