Eds. note this report contains Episcopal Church and General Convention lingo and terms. Check the websites listed at the end for full explanations.
In addition to breaking previous records for coverage, interest in the activities and decisions of The Episcopal Church General Convention 2009 (GC09) reached an all-time high, and here are the numbers to prove it.
Media Hub website
A new addition to General Convention - and obviously a hit nationally and internationally - was the innovative Media Hub website, which made it possible for people anywhere to follow GC09 in real time.
Featuring a myriad of ways to interact, the website offered live video streams, on-demand videos, lots of images, Twitter, Flickr, chat, blogging and much more, all originating from Anaheim.
The Media Hub website by the numbers:
- As of August 1, the Media Hub logged more than 90,000 visits.
- Roughly 50,000 videos have been viewed on demand.
- Roughly 30,000 people watched live video streams during GC09.
- Nearly 700 people registered for the Media Hub.
- The most watched GC09 videos the Daily Wraps, which provided an overview of the day's events.
- Visitors to the Media Hub website came from the United States, Canada, Mexico, Columbia, Peru, Brazil, Venezuela, Argentina, Chile, Ireland, United Kingdom, France, Spain, Portugal, Germany, Sweden, Tanzania, South Africa, Nigeria, Kenya, Ghana, Cote D'ivoire, Saudi Arabia, Egypt, Iran, Turkey, India, Pakistan, Georgia, Russian Federation, Philippines, Japan, New Zealand and Australia.
- In the United States, the top traffic (in order) came from Minnesota, New York, New Jersey, California, Nevada, Texas, Washington, and Michigan.
- The three most watched sermons were: Bishop Barbara Harris, retired suffragan of Massachusetts, at the July 10 Integrity Eucharist; Presiding Bishop Katharine Jefferts Schori at the UTO Ingathering on July 12; and Brian McLaren at the July 16 Eucharist.
The Media Hub website delivered an astounding more-than 2.7 terabytes of video during General Convention.
Thousands - thousands! - of photos were posted on the Media Hub Flickr site. And, there were so many tweets on the Twitter account that it was constantly refreshing (and new communities were born).
Noted Episcopal Church Director of Communication Anne Rudig, "The more content that we offered, the more people visited, viewed, shared, and participated. The conversations are still going on."
General Convention reporting
Always a favorite at General Conventions, the GC09 Guide was the largest ever, at 52 pages.
There were 11 issues of Convention Daily (another record) reflecting 85 pages of reporting and photos, including news from the ECW Triennial and, for the first time ever, Perspectivas Latinas, which offered 16 pages in Spanish.
At Episcopal Life Online, a remarkable 141 articles were posted, along with 22 image galleries, 29 Spanish-language articles in the Noticias section, and 22 videos in the multimedia area.
Although the number of credentialed media dropped from the last General Convention in 2006, the GC09 numbers were still impressive, with 214 credentialed reporters representing religious, secular, local and national newspapers, magazines, TV, radio, web publications, blogs and others.
This year, in acknowledgement of today's economy and limitations on budget and travel, a new category was offered for the first time - off-site credentials - and 31 media from across the United States jumped at the opportunity to cover and participate in this new way.
At GC09, a record 25 media briefings, conferences and press opportunities were staged during the 10 days, featuring 33 (another record) House of Bishops and House of Deputies media briefers plus four special guests as well as Presiding Bishop Katharine Jefferts Schori and House of Deputies President Bonnie Anderson (three times each).
In the media sessions, the top five topics asked by reporters (in descending order) were D025, the budget, Archbishop of Canterbury, B033, and C056.
GC09 was held July 8 to July 17 at the Anaheim Convention Center in California. General Convention, held every three years, is the bicameral governing body of the church and is comprised of the House of Bishops (HOB) and the House of Deputies (HOD), with clergy and lay representatives from the 110 dioceses. Final attendance tally: 1,100 deputies and alternates in HOD, and 162 bishops in HOB.
The Episcopal Church: www.episcopalchurch.org
Media Hub: http://www.episcopalchurch.org/gchub
Episcopal Life Online: http://www.episcopalchurch.org/elife/
General Convention News: http://www.episcopalchurch.org/107145_ENG_HTM.htm
General Convention: http://www.episcopalchurch.org/gc2009.htm