How to Create and Use Chatwing Chat Software

Yehey, I’m back at blogging. After a long silence and downtime, I’ll be posting some stuff. First off is a tutorial of Chatwing, a chat box you can use on your website. The following post is from Aaron of Chatwing. Note that Chatwing already had a guest post here. This is not a paid post.

If chatting with friends online is something you do everyday, then you might just love using Chatwing. It’s a chatting tool designed to cater the needs of its users efficiently and provides the best chatting experience. You don’t need to be an expert when you want to set it up yourself, because this nifty tool is also user friendly. Here’s a simple guide in creating a Chatwing chatbox and using it in a matter of minutes.

Step 1: Register

First up, go to Chatwing’s homepage and fill up the registration form to create an account. You only need to write down your email and a password for your account to finish it, so it’s very easy. You also have the option to allow the system to create a default chatbox for you after registration by checking on the box provided.

Register

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Step 2: Create the Chatroom

When you’re finished registering, you’ll be redirected to the Dashboard page. This is where you can see all the chatrooms you have made so far. If you have checked the box mentioned earlier, then you should be seeing a chatroom there. Each chatroom on the list has three corresponding buttons on the side: View, Customize and Use.

Here’s a brief explanation as to what these buttons do

View – Opens your chatroom directly on your browser.

Customize – Redirects you to the Customization panel where you can modify the chatroom,

Use – Redirects you to the Embedding page.

If you didn’t check the said box on the registration page then you’ll have to create one by pressing the Create chatbox button on the upper part of the Dashboard. Doing so will automatically redirect you to the customization page.

 

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Step 3: Customization

This page is where you’ll personalize your chatbox to fit your preferences. Chatwing’s modification process is vast and offers you a lot of customization options to choose from, so you can be sure that your chatbox can be as unique as it gets. This is also the place where you can change the settings of Chatwing’s additional functions too. The whole process is separated into tabs – this makes it easier for you customize certain parts of the chatbox and skip the others instead of following one straight process of modification.

However, you must take not of the Save buttons found in every tab of the Customization page. You have to press this whenever you make changes on that tab to implement them.

Once you’re done customizing, press the Use button on the upper part of the Customization panel. This will lead you to the Embedding page.

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Click to enlarge

 

Step 4: Utilizing the Chatbox

The Embedding page will let you choose three options of using the chatbox. You can use it directly via Group Chat URL or set it up on a site as a chat support tool via Embedded Options or Popout options.

If you’re a site owner, then it’s strongly recommended that you go for Embedded or Popout options, but if you just want to enjoy the company of your friends easily, then pick Group Chat URL.

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Click to enlarge

In this tab you are shown with the URL of your chatbox. Now all you need to do is copy that link and paste it into the address bar of your browser. You should see your chatbox moments after that. Inviting your friends over is easy – tell them to do it the same way you did. Just don’t forget to give them the URL of your chatbox though – you can make it shorter and much easier to memorize by using Chatwing’s alias feature on the Customization panel.

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Click to enlarge

Chatwing is a great tool to have if you want to have fun with your friends and families while chatting. Through its excellent chatting capabilities complimented with its features, it can do just that and more. And you don’t even have to pay a cent while using this. Because this chat software is free.

Converging Ministry Websites through Chatwing’s Innovative Chat Platform

Joining a ministry website is one of the modern ways on how to fuse sacredness and togetherness as a whole. Everyday, the Internet is being filled with ministry websites, communities, and even Christian portals—all intent on delivering God’s message to everyone. If you are thinking of creating a ministry website, remember that there is always hard work involved. The goal must be clear in your mind and you must find trendy ways on how to reach people in the least possible time. One of the easiest ways to reach groups of people is through the incorporation of simple website widgets. In this case, you can utilize a new chatroom application that has been offered by Chatwing.com.

Chatwing Chat Platform

Chatwing’s simple chat software can be installed easily and the process can be accomplished in just under a minute. The default color scheme is purple, but you can apply different color tinges in order to find the right combination. If the ministry website you are planning to build has a lighter color scheme, make the Chatwing chatroom brighter. In this way, your website’s visitors can spot the chatroom and they can leave messages easily. Aside from colors, you can also set the size and other important parameters. Basically, Chatwing grants full control to a website owner.

When it comes to connectivity, the chatroom app offers a nice deal. Visitors of the chatroom can log in with their social media accounts, like Facebook and Twitter. You can utilize this option to invite new people in your social network. This can help any ministry website grow. Humble volunteers can visit the Chatwing chatroom, and you can discuss many important things with them. Alternatively, you can post updates in the Chatwing chat box. These updates can be related to the newest activities of your ministry website. You can also try posting inspirational messages to entice your visitors. Remember to keep in touch with them, so they will keep returning on a regular basis.

In due time, other visitors might also use the Chatwing app for their ministry websites. This can help spread the premise of goodness, even in the online arena.

Disclaimer: This is a guest post by Aaron from Chatwing. I personally find their service useful and I was planning to use their chat software on a website I am maintaining even before he contacted me regarding this post.

Where’s the Church? – Filipino Churches Needs More Visibility

Have you noticed that you can easily spot popular establishments? Here in the Philippines, you know that there’s a fast food chain ahead because they’ve put up a sign on the major road 1 kilometer away. And as you close in, you’ll see another sign that it’s just 500 meters away. And then you’ll see this tall, large logo of the fast food chain. You’ll never miss it! This also goes to malls, parks, and other establishments. You can actually just ask anyone walking around where’s the establishment is and almost all will be able to pin point the location.

However, I find it weird that it’s totally the opposite for Christian Churches, at least here in the Philippines. If you are on a different country, it might not be the same, but here’s what I observed here in our country.

We spent our new year in my sister-in-law’s house in Laguna (a few hours travel from our place in Bulacan). And since January 1 (2012) fell on Sunday, one question I had in my mind is, what Church are we going to go there? So I went online and found a popular Christian group that has a Church near where my sister-in-law lives. So I checked their contact information and sent them a message asking what time is their worship service for January 1. However, I never got a reply. I also asked my wife to ask her sister if she knew any Christian Church we could go to. She was told that there is a Church near them.

Then came that Sunday morning, me, my wife, son and my wife’s niece prepared to go out to Church. We hired a tricycle to bring us to our destination. To our surprise, the popular Christian Church group I saw online was closed. So we decided to look for a different Church. Not familiar with the area, we just walked to where we came from and tried to look around for Churches. We found one, after almost 30 minutes of walking (however, they also don’t have any worship service that Sunday. It turned out they celebrated new year’s service on their mother Church, no notice though on their front door). On our way to the first Church, we did spotted a few Churches. However, we weren’t able to stop because we’ve only identified it’s a Church after we almost past it cause their Church sign is either too small to read, or it’s just “on” their Church building.

So I wondered, how many people were trying to look for a Church every Sunday but couldn’t find any because either people in the area aren’t aware of the Church or there are little to no signs that there is a Church nearby.

Some people would say that the Church doesn’t need that kind of marketing, cause Church is a Church and not a business. I agree, but isn’t the Church “more” than just a business. Church needs more than just marketing, we “need” to let people know about the Church, and I am referring to the Church building where people can gather.

I think Filipino Churches should use a better way of giving people directions where the Church is located. They can use signage, websites (but please, keep it updated), and other means.

I actually wrote this post back in January, but will only be posting it now.

Goodbye sundayschooldirector.co.cc, Welcome Back Marvin’s Place

Back in 2011, Google deindexed all subdomains under co .cc. I have actually two websites back then under co .cc, our Church website and my Sunday School Director blog. Since the deindexing, I was able to acquire a new domain (a .com domain) for our Church. However, I wasn’t able to pay much attention to the Sunday School blog, that’s because of a few reasons:

  • During the time of deindexing, I was in lay low status in leading our Christian Education Department.
  • After that, a series of ministry discouragement hit me and I was just going along with the flow in our Church.
  • I almost left the Church a few months back.
  • I have no funds to buy another domain.

So after almost (I can’t remember my last post there!?), I am now officially dropping sundayschooldirector . co .cc. Primarily because Google has a high probability of never indexing co .cc domains again. And secondly, I am no longer the head of our Christian Education Department (our denomination’s standard for Church government gives that position to an ordained Pastor or Elder).

With that, I will be refocusing my attention to this blog (which I wasn’t able to give some love in the past few months).

I also have another website (kristyano.com) that I have to maintain. It’s been up for more than a year. I might redo our/my plans for that website and give more focus.

That’s it for now.

Thanks for dropping by.

No Boundaries – Online Bible Study via Skype

A few hours ago (8am Philippine Time, 8pm Eastern Time), I had the privilege to be part of a test run for an online community Bible study using Skype. This was part of a test for an Online Bible Study for Woodside Bible Church and also for the coming launch of their internet Campus that was initiated by Pastor Mike Wendland. There were 6 participants. 3 from the U.S. (different states), 1 from Africa, 1 from the Caribbean, 1 (me) from the Philippines. It’s a group video chat so we can see each other’s faces, reactions and body languages. It was an awesome experience knowing that virtually, distance is not an issue anymore for Christians to have fellowship with other Christians and learn together. As long as you have a decent computer and a decent internet connection, a few people who want to join, then you’re ready to go.

On my last post, I stated the reason why I want to record our Church services and put it online. And with the experience earlier, I think it only means there are a lot of ways to make it happen (not just watching a recorded Sunday message, but interacting with other Christians).

Some may argue that the Church should be “physical”. And I do agree with that. But we can’t set aside the fact that there are a lot of Christians (for me, Filipino Christians) who are scattered around the globe who wants to interact/have fellowship with/grow with Christians from the same place they came from. And I do think using the internet is a great way to accomplish this.

Basically, with Skype, the host should have a premium account in order to host a group video chat. However, there are still other alternatives in doing this. One that comes to my mind is Google Plus which will also allow for a 10 member video chat (they call it Hang Out), and that would be free. All you need is a Google account and access to Google Plus (if you don’t have a Google Plus access, send me a message. NOTE: you need a Google Account – like gmai l- to get access).

Here is a screenshot I took while we were talking, the other is a excerpt video Mike recorded.

Skype Bible Study Group Test Call

Online Bible Study Group test from Mike Wendland on Vimeo.

Note: Whether you agree or disagree on the system of an Online Church, I think “connecting” with other Christians via internet is not a bad thing.

Recording Weekend Services

A lot of Churches today (specially in the U.S.) are recording their weekend services (Sunday Service Preaching). Some even have live broadcast over the internet and keeps all (or most) of their recordings accessible online (and podcast for iTunes). They have their different reason for doing it but the common reason is to reach more audience. So they allocate funding to build the proper team, acquire equipment and technology to fulfill this task. I won’t criticize them for that, I would actually do the same thing if our Church do have enough funding. That brings me to this post.

One of my goal in our Church is to record our weekend services. There’s a few reason why I am pushing it.

Reach more audience by making it available in the internet.

There’s a lot of Filipino Christians all over the world who doesn’t have an opportunity to join or attend a local Church due to language barriers, geographical, political, and other reasons. If they can have access to messages (in Filipino language, Filipino context), they would be able to continue growing as Christians. There are very few Filipino Church that has their weekend messages available online.

Make it available for local Church members.

Making it available for the local Church members will enable them to review the messages. It’s a fact that a person won’t be able to absorb everything that had been said in a 40 – 60 minute message unless they hear it again (multiple times).

Personal development of the preacher.

I have already recorded a few of my messages (audio only) and found out I am using words that is a bit awkward when used in the pulpit. I was able to record one message in video and found out that I move a lot when I preach. Being able to review my messages enables me to develop that message, build new messages as a supplement to that message, see mannerisms that should be avoided (both in action and in words) or have someone else review it for constructive criticism.

Would it encourage members not to attend weekend services anymore since they can get a hold of last Sunday’s message in audio or video format? I don’t think so. Looking at the Churches who are already doing this, their weekly attendance is continually growing. Used properly, recording weekend services and making it available online/media would serve as a way to invite more people to come to a local Church every Sunday.

Our Church’s Recorded Weekend Services

As I’ve said, I was able to record a few messages from our Church (both from me and our Pastor) in audio format. I’ve already made it available in our Church’s website. Last August 14, I was able to record my message in our Youth Service in video and already made it available online. That was my first attempt and there are a lot of things that can be improved (primarily the audio).

What’s my point?

I was able to do the recording using an old laptop (our Church’s laptop), an ordinary webcam (donated by a friend). and a free software for capture (Adobe Flash Media Live Encoder). I was able to upload it to a free online video service where you can view the message or embed it to websites. Therefore, for starters and Churches who doesn’t have the budget to buy high end cameras, computers, video hosting providers, software, etc, there is still a way to achieve it.

Not all might be interested doing this. But I would like to encourage Churches (whether big or small) to try it. I believe we should take advantage of the technology we have for the greater advancement of the Gospel.

On the upcoming post, I’ll share how I was able to record one of our messages without spending too much.

Changes

Change is inevitable.

directionsI did heard that phrase a lot of times. So what? Starting this August, this website’s focus will change from just sharing my life experiences about anything to reflections about God, Bible, life and other stuff.

So what will be different?

Instead of posting random, disorganized, nonsense posts, I will be writing about my personal (hopefully daily) Bible reflections, ministry reflections, leadership reflections, life reflections and even reflections about technology. It differs because I won’t just be posting “anything just so I have a post” but will post something that had a real impact in my life.

Am I going religious?

If that’s how you say it, then that’s it. But let me explain a bit. I am a “Born Again” Christian. I studied in a seminary. I am currently the head of our Church’s Christian Education Department. I lead a small group every Saturday evening. I preach, teach, share the Word of God. Isn’t it logical to put this website on the same track I am walking? I want to be a “practicing” Christian (a Christian who actively practices his faith). And no, I will never be ashamed of the Gospel that God has given me!

What about the readers?

History tells us that not everybody accepted Jesus Christ. History tells us that the world had been hostile to people who actively voice out and practice their faith. If you still want to read this blog, I’d be glad that you did. If you decided not to anymore, I would understand your side. But I do really hope that you’d give a chance to read and “reflect” on your own the things that you will read here (at least the posts that will come after this).

Goodbye Google Ads?

Nope, they’ll stay there.

Preparations

In line with this change. I’ve already changed my tagline. I am also changing the category of this blog on some blogging network from Personal Blog to Religious Blog. I might change the template (currently looking at some). I am also compiling articles, devotions, preaching, etc.. I’ve done before.

Disclaimers

Just to note, I am not an expert theological, expert preacher, expert Church leader, etc… I’m just a simple Christian longing to serve an extraordinary God.

Thanks for dropping by Marvin’s Place. This change is part of my growth as a Christian and a servant of Christ.

God bless you.

See you (hopefully) on my next post.

Image: porbital / FreeDigitalPhotos.net

My thoughts about God, Bible, life and more…