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Vatican official spells out conditions for supporting Internet

Truth, the dignity of the human person, and promotion of the common good are necessary principles that need to be respected in the use of new information and communications technologies, according to Archbishop John P. Foley, president of the Pontifical Council for Social Communications.

Archbishop Foley participated in this week's General Assembly of the United Nations dedicated to Information and Communication Technologies for Development, in New York.

In his speech to the assembly, the archbishop reaffirmed the Holy See's interest in new technology, especially its "human and moral implications".

He stressed the need to close the "digital divide", insisting that "the extension of basic telecommunications services to the entire population of developing countries is a matter of justice". He pointed out that another divide "operates to the disadvantage of women, and it too, needs to be closed".

The archbishop said that although the advent of new technology, as part of the process of globalisation, has provided an opportunity to promote development, the distribution of benefits has been "unequal".

He said: "While some countries - as well as corporations and individuals - have greatly increased their wealth, others have been unable to keep up or have even become poorer."

Pontifical Council for Social Communications


20 Jun 2002