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Pope Benedict XVI officially joins Twitter as @Pontifex

As promised, Pope Benedict XVI has joined the social media world with a new Twitter account.

His Holiness will be tweeting using the username @Pontifex, which in case you were wondering, is Latin for ‘Pope’. It was also chosen because the word means ‘bridge builder’, which fits the bill for social media communications perfectly.

As of December 12th, the Pope will be tweeting in six different languages to those who follow him. The first tweet will be a Q & A affair, with the personal account being used to answer questions from followers in 140 characters or less. It’s expected to be a reply affair, rather than employing some sort of hashtag in order to draw attention to the new account.

The new @Pontifex account is not to be confused with the Pope’s first tweet sent last year, which was actually sent from a Vatican account. Pope Benedict XVI tweeted in July of last year to launch a Vatican news website.

According to The Vatican’s communications adviser Greg Burke, the Pope will be tweeting as and when he wants from his personal account. We’re not so sure he’ll be jumping on to join in on the current #WiiU trending topic, however.

At present the Pope has 47,528 followers and counting, and is following seven other Twitter users, which are in fact other accounts for each language he will be tweeting in – German, Spanish, Portugese, Polish, Italian, French and Arabic.

The Pope joining Twitter just goes to show the power and popularity of the social micro-blogging site – which big name will join it next?

We may not be as big as his Holiness, but you can find us on Twitter under the username @Gadget_Helpline

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