With the introduction of top-level domains (TLD), .Bible finds its home. Following a lengthy process of application and review, American Bible Society was selected to take on the challenge of overseeing one of the new faith-themed TLDs: .Bible.
The online landscape is once again poised for rapid change thanks to the decision by the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN) to allow for the creation of a new alphabet of domain extensions. It won’t be long until we are once again getting acquainted with a whole host of new “dots” in web addresses. Each new TLD is opening up new online territories that will need to be mapped out and carefully developed.
American Bible Society seems a good choice for forging the path for the new .Bible frontier. After all, this is the organization that first sent pocket Bibles to the new Western frontier via Pony Express riders. As one of the oldest and most enduring ministries in the nation, American Bible Society has always been a pioneer. From distributing the first pocket Bibles to soldiers to placing the first Bibles in hotel rooms, from creating the first audio recording of the Bible for the visually impaired to creating the first modern English translation of God’s Word in the Good News Bible, American Bible Society has always been an innovator.
It should come as no surprise that the ministry jumped into the .Bible universe with gusto and is blazing the trail to a new online territory. The addition of .Bible will accelerate global online Bible access and facilitate engagement in ways not previously possible.
But managing the new .Bible domain also presents a new challenge for American Bible Society: how to steward this incredible opportunity. The ministry has selected a handful of pioneering partners to help pave the way on the .Bible landscape.
Among the first to follow American Bible Society’s launch on new TLD (American.Bible) are ministry partners such as YouVersion (free.Bible), Berean Study Bibles (Berean.Bible), Reason for Truth (apologetics.Bible), The Greek Orthodox Archdiocese of America (GreekOrthodox.Bible) and Christian Leadership Alliance (leadership.Bible).
Christian Leadership Alliance (CLA) is a pioneer partner with American Bible Society for the launch of Leadership.Bible. This site features “Outcomes 365,” which highlights the best of CLA’s biblically based leadership training and experiences, creating a dynamic, customized journey for a leader’s personal and professional growth. As a pioneer partner with American Bible Society, CLA introduced Outcomes365 at Leadership.Bible to activate, accelerate and achieve that outcome in Christian nonprofit ministry leaders across the nation and around the world.”
Part of American Bible Society’s stewardship plan for the .Bible TLD is to approve only those applications for a .Bible domain that will present positive Bible-related content. Individuals and groups that have a respect for the Bible will own sites, which feature the .Bible domain. American Bible Society will provide ongoing monitoring to ensure the .Bible domain continues to provide a trusted online space for those seeking to engage with the Bible.
American Bible Society’s management of the .Bible TLD is part of a much larger strategy to advance the Bible movement. On the eve of its bicentennial anniversary, American Bible Society has launched its “100/100 vision.” In the next ten years, the ministry will work with partners to translate 100 percent of the world’s languages, opening them up for first-time Bible access, and equip 100 million people in the United States to actively engage with the Bible.
It is hard to imagine what the next frontier of Bible engagement will look like in the decades ahead. But one thing is easy to predict: wherever that frontier is, it is likely that American Bible Society will be out front, paving new pathways for others to follow so that people everywhere can experience the life-changing message of the Bible.
Andrew Hood is the managing director of communications for American Bible Society, where he has served for four years. The post is an excerpt from the 2015 Winter edition of Outcomes Magazine. You can learn more about the .Bible initiative HERE.
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