Changes in Vatican Media

And a Bid for the .catholic Domain

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VATICAN CITY, JUNE 13, 2012 ( On Tuesday the Vatican announced that as of this July 31, the Vatican Information Service (VIS) will cease to exist as a separate office providing information distinct from the Bulletin of the Holy See Press Office.

There will, however, be a Press Office Bulletin. Some of the VIS staff will be transferred to work on the multilingual portal, which was established a year ago. Others will be employed in the multilingual development of the Press Office Bulletin.

The Vatican news portal provides a daily service in Italian, English, Spanish and French. Up to now the Press Office Bulletin has mainly been published principally in Italian, unless the original texts were in other languages, while VIS has published not only in Italian but also in English, French and Spanish.

The archive of more than 85,000 articles in various languages, produced by VIS in more than twenty years of activity, will be available on the Web site of the Press Office.

Vatican Radio also announced changes. In the words of its director-general, Jesuit Father Federico Lombardi, from July 1 there will be: “A new chapter in the history of Vatican Radio.”

Vatican Radio will discontinue much of its medium and short wave broadcasts, with the exception of countries in poorer regions of the world. It will, instead, devote greater resources to Web-based services, satellite transmissions, and other new communications technologies.

A further development came today when the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN) revealed who has applied for which generic Top-Level Domain (gTLD) names in what is expected to become the largest expansion in the history of the Internet’s Domain Name System.

A total of 1,930 new gTLD applications were received during the application period of the new generic Top-Level Domain program.

The publication of the applications for new suffixes to Web addresses is a look at potential rivals to .com and other endings.

Google and Amazon stand out for the number of applications, with the former making over 101 top-level domains claims and the latter with 76.

The Vatican has also put in a claim on the .catholic domain and its equivalents in other languages and alphabets.

ICANN began accepting proposals for the new domains names in January. Each proposal cost $185,000 to submit.

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