200,000 Follow World Youth Day on Facebook

Global Participants Already Networking Online

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MADRID, Spain, DEC. 10, 2010 (Zenit.org).- Organizers of the 2011 World Youth Day (WYD) in Madrid are many means, including social networking sites like Facebook, to draw participants to the event.

Some 200,000 are following news of the youth day in 20 languages through Facebook. More than one million have visited the event’s official page on the Internet.

Through these means, young people are able to stay updated on novelties of the youth day and give their opinions on related topics.

The latest languages incorporated on the Facebook page are Romanian and Hungarian.

Cristina del Campo, community manager of the 2011 WYD, explained that «the volunteers are the ones who have suggested opening the page in their language, committing themselves to administer the page, translating the texts we send them and managing the day to day changes.»

«In this way,» she added, «WYD Madrid ’11 reaches young people in all corners of the world.»

Most of the interventions and questions are related to registration or participation in WYD as volunteers. Suggestions are also given to questions asked by the organizers. Many users have expressed joy at the prospect of attending the event.

There have also been competitions that have drawn a lot of attention, such as suggestions for the choice of the best phrases of the Pope’s Message written for that event. Users selected their favorite quotation and those whose choices received the greatest approval from other users were awarded two front row tickets in the Cuatro Vientos airfield for the prayer vigil and final Mass.

International relations

Currently, 70 volunteers maintain the pages, translating and answering the questions that arise through Facebook.

Volunteers interact from their native countries with future participants in the event.

Madrid’s youth day is also present in other leading social networks: Orkut in Brazil; Mixi in Japan; Tuenti in Spain, and Vkontakte in Russia.

Moreover, news of the event is also communicated through Twitter to 5,600 followers, YouTube with close to 400,000 reproductions of its videos, and Flickr with more than 57,000 visits.

In addition to the social networks, World Youth Day has a key presence on the Internet through its official Web site.

Since it opened in November of 2009, the visits to the Web site have continued to grow, numbering more than one million at present.

The site has received 4 million consultations, the interest being primarily in the organization of the event, the agenda for the week and registration.

Already, 200,000 persons have confirmed their attendance at Madrid’s WYD.

The country that has registered the most confirmed participants is France, with more than 45,000 attending. It is followed by Italy with more than 41,000, Spain with 25,000 and the United States with over 13,000.

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On the Net:

World Youth Day 2011: www.madrid11.com

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