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InfoServ Now Offers Live Chat

United Methodist Communications
Office of Public Information
810 12th Avenue S.
Nashville, TN 37203
www.umcpresscenter.org

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
June 10, 2010

Nashville, Tenn.: InfoServ, the official information service of The United Methodist Church, now offers an online "Live Chat" feature that allows customers to communicate directly with representatives. Launched June 1, 2010, "Chat with InfoServ" encourages real time conversations between members, church pastors, agency staff and others with questions about The United Methodist Church.

InfoServ is a ministry of United Methodist Communications. Started in 1974 as a "reference desk" for those who have questions about United Methodist beliefs, worship practices,positions on social issues, local church questions and more, InfoServ averages about 1,700 inquiries a month.

In August 2009, the agency announced that InfoServ would discontinue phonesupport and transition toonly e-mail and online service to provide better stewardship of resources, while continuing to offer high quality service. Over the past several years, at least 60 percentof contacts with InfoServ have come via e-mail. Comparisons of satisfactionlevels, as shown in customer surveys, indicated that e-mail provides an effective means for assisting consumers. Additional information and "frequently asked questions" were also added toUMC.org to provide a self-service option that customers can access anytime.

"This 'Live Chat' feature restores an immediate person-to-person connection with those who depend on InfoServ for answers to their questions about The United Methodist Church," said the Rev. Larry Hollon, chief executive of United Methodist Communications. "Not only is it customer-friendly, it is budget-friendly as we continue to provide answers quickly, accurately,and economically."

Customers are able to submit questions via e-mailatinfoserv@umcom.org. Answers to the most frequently asked questions are also available online at infoserv.umc.org.

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About United Methodist Communications
As the communications agency for The United Methodist Church, United Methodist Communications seeks to increase awareness and visibility of the denomination in communities and nations around the globe. United Methodist Communications also offers services, tools, products and resources for communications ministry.

Media Contact: Diane Degnan
(615) 742-5406 (office)
(615) 483-1765 (cell) ddegnan@umcom.org