Monday, March 04, 2013

Darkened windows

I was in the Piazza this afternoon, and could not help looking up at those closed windows.

Also, still reeling from the absolutely incredible incompetence of the organisers in the Vatican's media offices. They've kicked everyone out of the Sala Stampa, which has great facilities but is built to accommodate no more than a couple of dozen reporters at a time, and moved us all into a "media centre"...

that has no wifi.

And no cell phone signal.


They've accredited nearly 5000 journalists for the conclave, and they've set up a media centre where you can't use your phone or your computer. Instead, they've given us about 20 creaking old PCs with nothing but Spanish and Italian keyboards. They've had three weeks to set up for the presence of the world's media, and they've got 20 computer stations and about 30 more empty desks. As we were sitting in there today, watching the press conference from the first General Congregation, that we were only allowed to attend through closed circuit TV beamed in from the sala stampa, the technicians were still stringing cables to the other desks. They have no plans to provide wifi internet access. But I was told that there would be more computers available tomorrow.

Oh. Good.

Great work there guys.



a Christopher said...

You mean to tell us that five thousand journalists are descending on Rome from around the world and they all don't know/can't imagine half a dozen ways to set-up their own wireless network on a bunch of laptops?

Teresa B. said...

The Cardinals sent a telegram to Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI expressing their gratitude.
Do people still send telegrams?

Hilary Jane Margaret White said...


since there isn't even any cell phone signal, I would have been better off sitting at the base of one of the columns in the colonnade with my computer on my lap and my mobile internet stick plugged in.

Fortunately, there are cafes and bars all over the place with good wireless connections.

Anonymous said...

This type of thing gives me a chuckle. For the conspiracy theorists who worry about the Pope's armies taking over the world, I say we are more like F-troop.

It the Holy Spirit was not running the thing, how could it possibly gotten to be 2000 years old?


Anonymous said...

Perhaps the deliberately underwhelming accommodations are the point, not an oversight. Perhaps the Church is reminding the media that this event takes place for the good of the holy Church, not so that newspapers can sell more copy and TV stations can get higher ratings.

For whether or not the proceedings are reported upon, they will happen, and we can only pray that they will happen with the guidance of the Holy Spirit, rather than to please The New York Times or CNN.