Video | Business Headlines | Internet | Science | Scientific Ethics | Technology | Search

 

Believers flock to online religion

Believers flock to online religion - leaving tradition behind them


Hitwise Press Release - 17th April, 2003

For Immediate Release

Believers flock to online religion - leaving tradition behind them

New Zealand - 17th April 2003 - More New Zealanders are defining their spiritual journey online with traffic to religion sites up on this time last year, according to Hitwise, New Zealand's leading Internet competitive intelligence company.

So, why the increase in virtual religion?

Add the hundreds of Christian sites - ranging from Catholic and Anglican to Russian Orthodox, Lutheran and Quaker - to a similar number of non-Christian and non-belief sites including Baha'i, Buddhim, Gnostic, Hinduism, Islam, Judaism, New Age, paganism, Satanism, Scientology, Sikhism, Spiritism, Spiritualism, Taoism, Theosophy, and Zoroastrianism - and you have a snapshot of religion today.

And don't forget The Raelian Revolution - claimed to be 'The world's largest UFO-related organisation'.

According to Tessa Court, SVP of Hitwise, "given the range of choice and information, there's little wonder that congregations are aging and attendances at church services are down, with young people using the Internet to define their spiritual journey and beliefs without having to set foot in a church."

So, what religions have the largest online congregations?

New Zealand's most popular religion sites include Parachute Music, Anglican Diocese of Dunedin, Radio Rhema and the Stupa Information Page (FYI - a stupa is an ancient Buddhist shrine dedicated to the historic Buddha Shakyamuni).

Internationally, most domestic traffic is directed to The Church of Jesus Christ of the Latter Day Saints, Gospel Communications Network - an alliance of Christian organizations dedicated to spreading the Gospel over the world wide web - and Belief Net which provides chat rooms, discussion and resources for a range of religions, beliefs and spiritualities.

So, how long does the online spiritual journey take and where does it take you?

Hitwise statistics show that the average session duration for religion sites is 6 minutes and 15 seconds, and with only 14% of traffic to religion sites directed at domestic services, New Zealanders are looking for answers overseas which could signify the fact that religion and spiritualism have moved beyond the local parish.

So, who are the most committed believers?

Last week a massive 8.8% of visitors to The Churches' Agency on Social Issues left with the intention of returning by adding this site to their "favorites". The next most bookmarked sites were NZMuslim.net (8%), CYG Online (3.5%), and Parachute Music (3%).

So, what do virtual parishioners do when they leave their favorite site?

Check out other sites - continuing to search for answers.....

...4% of traffic to www.parachutemusic.com went on the spread the gospel though www.soulpurpose.co.nz

...3% of traffic to www.eastercamp.org.nz clicked through to the World Vision site to find out the latest news about humanitarian projects

..3.9% of traffic to www.christianbookstore.com.nz went on to join the campaign for tougher sentencing and punishment for serious crimes in New Zealand at safe-nz.com.nz

So, what are some of the more interesting religious sites?

Recent world unrest has seen the rise of sites dedicated to promoting human rites, as well as information about Islam for non-Muslims.

"Sites like islamcity.com and religioustolerance.org provide the opportunity for people of all religions to explore faiths other than their own, while promoting the belief that everyone should be able to follow their own religious practices freely, even though others may view them as false," said Ms Court.

About Hitwise

Hitwise is the leading online competitive intelligence service giving strategists, agencies and financial analysts real-time insights on the online competitive environment. Hitwise uses ISP user activity logs, behavioral monitoring networks and proprietary Internet trawling technologies to monitor the surfing habits of local Internet users, covering home, work and educational usage. Monitoring the largest sample of Internet users of its kind in the world, Hitwise provides daily insights all companies need to make timely and effective business decisions.

Hitwise is headquartered in Melbourne, Australia and offers its service in

New Zealand, Australia,the UK, Hong Kong, Singapore and the USA.

ENDS


© Scoop Media

 
 
 
Business Headlines | Sci-Tech Headlines

 

Media Mega Merger: StuffMe Hearing Argues Over Moveable Feast

New Zealand's two largest news publishers are appealing against the Commerce Commission's rejection of the proposal to merge their operations. More>>

Elsewhere:


Approval: Northern Corridor Decision Released

The approval gives the green light to construction of the last link of Auckland’s Western Ring Route, providing an alternative route from South Auckland to the North Shore. More>>

ALSO:


Crown Accounts: $4.1 Billion Surplus

The New Zealand Government has achieved its third fiscal surplus in a row with the Crown accounts for the year ended 30 June 2017 showing an OBEGAL surplus of $4.1 billion, $2.2 billion stronger than last year, Finance Minister Steven Joyce says. More>>

ALSO:

Mycoplasma Bovis: One New Property Tests Positive

The newly identified property... was already under a Restricted Place notice under the Biosecurity Act. More>>

Accounting Scandal: Suspension Of Fuji Xerox From All-Of-Government Contract

General Manager of New Zealand Government Procurement John Ivil says, “FXNZ has been formally suspended from the Print Technology and Associated Services (PTAS) contract and terminated from the Office Supplies contract.” More>>