What is Parallel Bible?
Parallel Bible is the world’s first social, visual bible. It’s a bible for the 21st century. It’s a bible for the age of visual learners and community sharing.
A social, visual bible? That sounds dangerous!
Well – in the best way, we hope so. We very much want the Bible to break out of its current mold. While we love our paper bibles, Parallel will be a change in the Bible landscape. We believe it will be a good one, but when change happens, feathers get ruffled and something new emerges. We can’t guarantee that this will always be pleasant and helpful. We expect their will be difficulties. We just think that this calling is worth the battle scars. We imagine a bible that speaks to us in new ways that are so powerful and beautiful that we’re amazed and our faith is deepened. We want to facilitate that in the best, most authentic and uplifting way possible.
How much is your app?
Free. Available in iTunes and coming soon to an Android store near you.
Where does the name come from?
The term parallel bible has mostly been used by seminarians to study different translations of the bible side by side. This is a way of comparing notes, illuminating passages and deepening understanding. This is wonderful. And we see Parallel Bible as an extension or a multi-dimensional expansion of that premise. Firstly and obviously, we’re making the natural connection between the text and a set of images related to that text. Beyond that, we’re pushing the parallel concept into our lives. In fact, that’s the heart of the idea – that your very life is a parallel edition of the bible. The actions you make and the life you live are a reflection and an illumination of the sacred text.
The bible is a graphic! What will you do about inappropriate images?
This is a critical question and one we are eager to get right. We’ll find the answer together with you. To start, we want to focus everyone to think about contributing to the bible both as individuals and as a community. Because we’ll all be able to see your images in relation to verses, it’s your responsibility/ opportunity to share amazing content. We hope that it will be content that reflects
Of course, the bible has plenty of verses that talk about graphic material ranging from sex to atrocities of war. We ask that graphic, literal representations of such not be posted. We don’t see this as disingenuous (editing the bible), but rather as a critical way of creating Parallel as a place where everyone can feel comfortable at the table. Figurative images attached to these verse will make for a much richer and illuminating offer for others. Literal translation is the lowest form of understanding and we will not allow images of this nature on Parallel. We appreciate the most of all of the community here will understand and respect this guideline.
In the event that these images do get posted (and unfortunately, they will), we believe that the community is the best group to respond to it. When you see images that violate this rule, please report them immediately so that we can delete the images quickly and follow up with the party involved. Once two or more people list a photo as inappropriate, it will immediately be disabled until further review by the Parallel team.
Hold on... that gives the Parallel community a lot of responsibility. Right?
Yes. We want to err on the side of getting potentially harmful posts down quickly. This give a lot of responsibility to the you. While we believe that this will work 99% of the time, there is a bit of a sticky distinction to make. That is this line: There is a difference between what is inappropriate for the Parallel community (according to its guidelines) and that which you personally feel is disagreeable to you.
We recognize that the bible and biblical viewpoints are some of the most hotly contested conversations on the planet. And we realize that people will disagree on interpretations and much more. So be it – we are a diverse and beautiful body and as long as we are people, this will be so. At the same time, we believe that as a body of believers, we are called to love one another (read: listen, respect, try to understand, among other things). For this reason, we ask that the ‘inappropriate’ button only be used on times when you come across an egregious post.
Will you add editing features?
At the moment, we don’t think we will. We want to celebrate some of the amazing editing platforms that already exist out there (ex: VSCO and others). They are wonderful and amazing programmers are doing the work. We invite you to use their apps to get your photo just right and then import it to Parallel. Of course – we also welcome the old-fashioned unedited photo (ever develop a roll of film?). Sometimes those are the best. Don’t be afraid of unfaltering your life ☺
Are you hiring?
Yes. And we probably need you in some capacity of another. We’re looking for excellent people – particularly in design/development – who can really make this the bible we’ve always wanted in the 21st century.
How does privacy work?
Like other photo sharing sites, we default to a public account. This means that anyone can subscribe to follow your page. In the future, we will have a privacy mode available which will allow you to approve subscription requests. On the other side, all posts will be publicly shared to the archive. That means that whenever you post, your image will be attached to that scripture and therefore viewable. While we want to encourage this (since it will be the best way to really build Parallel Bible) we do understand that you may want to keep some posts private. We plan to develop functionality in the coming months that will allow you to direct message and share only in closed groups settings.