Ready, Fire, Aim! - Mihail's Public Blog: Texting Turns 20, Pope to start Tweeting

Monday, December 17, 2012

Texting Turns 20, Pope to start Tweeting

According to this Wall Street Journal blog entry here (thanks to the WSJ CIO Journal highlights):

It was Dec. 3, 1992, when Neil Papworth, a text engineer in London, first texted “Merry Christmas” to Vodafone VOD.LN -1.71% employee Richard Jarvis, who was at a Christmas party across town.

It was possible because the new generation of digital mobile phones incorporated letters on the number pad so that customers could put names of contacts into the phone book on their phones.

One year later Nokia NOK1V.HE +0.61% introduced the first mobile phone that allowed customers to send text messages to others within the same network. Then in 1999, text messages could cross networks for the time. A new fever was born.

From this Reuters story here:

The secret's out. Pope Benedict's new handle on Twitter will be @pontifex, beating out other contenders that had been considered to showcase the thoughts of one of the world's most visible leaders.

Benedict already has 1.2 billion "followers" in the standard sense of the word but next week he will have another type when he enters what for any 85-year old is the brave new world of Twitter.

The Vatican said on Monday that the pope will start tweeting on December 12.

"The handle is a good one. It means 'pope' and it also means 'bridge builder'," said Greg Burke, senior media advisor to the Vatican.

Among the other handles that Vatican officials had reportedly considered was @BenedictusPPXVI, but they opted for something that was linked to the office of the papacy.

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