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Institute website celebrates landmark

14/03/2008: General House

The Institute’s Communications Office is found on the second floor of the Generalate. Every morning the Office’s work gets under way with the aim of publishing a recent news item about the Institute. Today’s news is that we have now reached the one thousandth edition of the news service.

We are really delighted to have reached this landmark. Day after day, we of the Communications Office open the windows of web news so that each one of our readers can know something about the Marist world. Starting from this panoramic perspective, we have made our way down the pathways of the planet listening to the heartbeat of various Administrative Units spread over the Marist universe. In such a news gathering effort the first focus is upon the General Administration, since the website is at the service of the Superior General and his Council. The news content, therefore, is basically an echo of Institute activities flowing from the General Chapter invitations and from the different ways in which the General Council’s has been responding to the invitations

Since April 16, 2004, the opening day of the Institute website when the news concerned the tenth anniversary of Brother Henri Vergès death in Algeria; from that date right up to today four years have passed. Over the period of time the flow of information has kept up a continual rhythm, eventually reaching the point of being able to offer at least one bit of Marist news each day. On some days, the website has published two or even three news reports. The information flow has been in function of the Institute’s own activities. In addition, however, the flow of news has been made possible by the key work of translators who on certain occasion have had to make extraordinary efforts in order to produce the news reports on time. One must not forget that our website is offered in four languages. You see then how a major part of our news service is dependent on the translators’ work.

Thanks to computer data, we can see that the official web page has a group of regular, dependable readers whose numbers are gradually increasing. At times the number of pages read shoots up markedly. The most recent statistics (February 2008) report that the number of pages consulted by our readers in a single day reached 8000.

old.champagnat.orgThe fact that the web page is being well received is due not only to the news content, even if that is the aspect to which we now give major attention. The favorable reception is due also to the content of the website, encouraging us to maintain a high quality communication service. One of the concerns of those who are responsible for the web pages is to stamp them with a high-level technical quality and to stay up to date with the technology.

As a consequence, certain initiatives have been taken. For example, the « website plan » is being set up, by which the viewer may see at a glance the “topics” and the “navigation system” needed to find various useful topics in the website. Topics of that kind may remain unknown to those who are not familiar with the technology. Another development springs from the abundance of material in the worldwide web, the consequence of which is that the storage system of the Publications’ server has reached its limit. Even if we had originally anticipated storage needs of a certain amplitude, we have been required to purchase a new server with much greater storage capacity.

We are grateful for the expressions of gratitude which have been sent by those who use our website. We thank them for the interest and fidelity that have exhibited and for the numerous congratulations which have reached us in various ways as to the quality of services which the Marist Website is offering.

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