Find out more about International Media Services (formerly Vernacular Media Services).
Our International Media Services personnel work alongside translation teams to help develop culturally appropriate media tools in the “vernacular”—or everyday language—of people groups around the world.
For more than 15 years, IMS has researched and designed media strategies to share God’s Word with oral societies, which communicate primarily through what can be seen and heard. Today, dozens of trained vernacular media specialists work hand-in-hand with translation teams to:
- Evaluate the communication needs of specific language groups.
- Design appropriate media strategies.
- Create effective, culturally appropriate media tools.
We use a custom blend of “high-tech” and “low-tech” media tools to meet the communication needs of individual language groups. Some of our current media tools include:
- Videos in local languages, such as the JESUS film and the Luke and Genesis videos.
- Audio Scriptures, study materials and music recordings, which are distributed on mobile phones, CDs and MegaVoice players.
- Drama and music presentations.
- “Low-tech” tools such as flannel-graphs, puppets and flip charts.
Through these means, the translated Scriptures can be shared with all people in a given language group—regardless of their age, physical health or ability to read. In addition, when people hear media in their own language, it often sparks an interest in literacy and printed Scriptures.
God’s Word means the most when it’s in a form we enjoy.
For some of us, it’s a book. For others, it’s a Bible video. Some cultures love audio: music, Scriptures, and radio dramas. Some like to tell stories in person. And sometimes a website is best, so people can save files to their cell phones. When the Bible is in a form that fits with our everyday lives, we’re much more likely to study, understand, and share it.