Friday, 31 March 2023 to Sunday, 2 April 2023

Orthodoxy 2.0: Explaining the Online Activity of Religious Bloggers

Fri31  Mar02:30pm(15 mins)
McIntyre Room 208
Dr Dragos Samsudean


Dragos Samsudean1
1 BabeČ™-Bolyai University, Romania


Religious blogging has gained momentum in the last decade. Extensive research covers the evolution, organization and activity of online Christian religious bloggers among Chatolics, Protestants and Neo-Protestants groups. However, limited attention is paid to online Orthodox bloggers and we know very little about their motivations post online on religious topics. This paper adresses this gap in the literature and aims to explain what are the personal motivations of ortho-bloggers in their online activity. It uses Romania as a case study due to its Orthodox majority, a very good internet infrastructure and activ Orthodox Church. The qualitative analysis draws on semi-structured interviews with Romanian Orthodox bloggers conducted in June-July 2021. Preliminary results indicate that among the main personal motivations are the desire to gain professional notoriety and to build a personal online religious community. The findings bear important theoretical and empirical implications for the study of religion and engagement with new modes of online communication in new democracies.