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Facebook to follow sea goddess Matsu festival

TAIPEI--The annual procession to honor the sea goddess Matsu in Taiwan's central county of Changhua will include a “check-in” feature on Facebook this year, giving followers the latest updates on the procession, organizers said Saturday.

In its fifth year, the Matsu religious festival in Changhua has become the county's most vibrant event of its kind, Chou Po-yuan said in a message posted on the event's official website.

Chou hopes the event and its various activities, including religious rituals, traditional plays, fairs, competitions and seminars, can also give a boost to local tourism.

In collaboration with Chunghwa Telecom Co., Taiwan's biggest telecom operator, this year's event incorporates traditional practices and new technology, the organizers said.

Using global positioning systems and electronic fence solutions, Matsu will automatically “check in and out” at each temple she visits on a Facebook page, the telecom company said. Her followers will get the latest updates.

This year's procession began Saturday at Fu Ning Temple in the Changhua township of Yuanlin, where the goddess is enshrined, and will proceed to 11 temples in the county, before returning to Fu Ning on the eighth day.

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