Posting, Sharing, and Religious Testifying 17 their united faith and religiosity, which promotes a desire to share and broad- cast inspirational texts. While still a minority of social media users—only 24 percent of American adults use Twitter (Smith & Anderson, 2018)—this social networking plat- form creates an environment conducive to religiosity. Religion-related hashtags unite users across geographic locations, denominations, creeds, and classes. Such interconnected hashtags include: #proudcatholic, #christian, #christianity, #jesuschrist, #religion, #religious, #faith, #amen, #godblessa- merica, and #devotion, as found on These hashtags enable consumers on Twitter to perform religious rituals such as ministry, devotion, and missionary work. A common practice of the religious on Twit- ter is to share religious texts, such as verses from the Bible or Qur’an, either to strengthen the poster’s faith or the reader’s, or to encourage others to investigate the faith. Many pastors and leaders of Christian faiths believe that Twitter was made for the Bible, as on average, verses in the King James Ver- sion are about 100 characters long, leaving room for a hashtag and fitting into the platform’s then 140-character limit (O’Leary, 2012). The sharing and disseminating of Bible verses support the Christian beliefs of ministering to others or strengthening the faith of believers. Also important to Christianity is daily devotion or reading the word of God every day. And last, it supports the belief in missionary work, or converting others outside the faith to be saved and to accept the gospel of Christ. All of these expressions of faith can be linked to the sharing of inspirational texts via social networking sites such as Twitter (Carter, 2016). As evidenced by their secular versions, inspirational tweets gain traction online, as many users are willing to engage with uplifting and inspiring messaging. Twitter is built around the power of short messages, of which scripture verses have been some of the most potent throughout the ages. As many users of social media are looking for ways to harness these tools for good (Carter, 2016), they are finding ways to perform religious rituals through the performance and dec- laration of their religion online. These platforms are creating instances where the work of religion can spread through the rites or actions of their users. Leaders find new followers, and those seeking truth find inspiration. This two-way street of many-to-many communication benefits all religious users on Twitter, bridging and building connections and community. Pinterest A unique social network, Pinterest implements the social aspects of com- munity but decouples it from the direct communication found on other plat- forms. Unlike Facebook or Twitter, where users can directly interact with each other through messages or comments, the communication of Pinterest is solely nonverbal—labeled as “paralinguistic digital affordances” (PDAs) by
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