In response to my Open Letter to Christian Media Outlets of July 24, 2002, I received the following response (note, the hyperlinks within the article are mine):
From: JR Whitby
To: Dean Peters
Subject: BG [gospelcom.net #53868]
Thanks for taking the time to write to us about the Bible Gateway. Dean, With the hundreds of messages we receive for the Bible Gateway each week, it’s nice to get encouraging messages about cool feature requests like this once in a while. The Bible Gateway does not currently offer the type of interface you’re suggesting, but it is something we’ve been researching for a while. We have been involved with a couple of the initial meetings for the Open Scriptural Information Standard (OSIS) [http://www.bibletechnologies.net/], and are continuing to follow the development of the schema [http://www.bibletechnologies.net/schemadoc.cfm]. We are honored to be working with organizations such as ABS and IBS that are helping lead the way for these standards. This type of work is consistent with the philosophy that’s driven the open source projects we’ve published in the past [http://oss.gospelcom.net/].
Providing an XML interface is in our plans for the future, and is something we want to provide. We are working to make this type of syndication easier for site owners like yourself, while ensuring we meet the requirements and copyrights of the versions that have been provided to us from the various publishers. As resources become available, we will continue our development along these lines.
Thanks again for the suggestions!
Vice President, Gospel Communications International
The most popular Christian site on the Internet
Well, it’s not the answer I wanted, but it sure was the nicest response I could have hoped for. And while I’m glad to see XML in discussion, I’m hoping they’ll realize that XML-based API need not be contingent on the rendering of their systems in XML. In other words, I’m hoping they shoot for an API in the short term, while working on documenting Christendom in XML in the long term.
Still, a very nice response from a good ways up the food chain.
Believe me, it IS appreciated!