The dramatic downturn felt by secular Internet companies has affected the once-booming Christian dot com world, reports Christianity Today (Feb. 16).
Companies, such as iBelieve.com, i.Christian.com and Lightsource.com (which provided Christian audio programs on the web) have crashed, while Crosswalk.com is losing support and revenues. Most of the closings and losses are tied to the same general dot-com problem of not having the long term assets to build a customer base. Those sites that sought to function more as a ministry or to enable other ministries to navigate the Internet (rather than as a destination) have done better.
Christianity.com, for instance, has assembled a diverse group of ministries, such as Prison Fellowship, under one umbrella. Then there is the highly eclectic Beliefnet.com, which is flourishing (though no revenues are revealed) and entering into new partnerships, such as with America Online. Some thought the company’s multi-faith approach might be its downfall, but Beliefnet’s eclectic offerings (featuring teachings and commentary from all the major religions, as well as Neopagans and Scientologists) has been its strength, creating a wide base of support.
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