The Jewish community has been woefully slow to respond to the challenges of social media activity and the uncomfortable truth is that any notable presence is down to the commitment and resolve of a few vocal individuals. So mainstream media and even respectable scientific and medical journals feel empowered to publish an unbalanced narrative without fear or challenge.
And whilst age old techniques such as writing letters to newspapers and politicians still have a place in our armoury, they are increasingly at odds with the immediacy, accessibility and impact of social networks.
So we need to 'up our game' to challenge irresponsible reporting at source and help restore balance and fairness to the way the community and Israel are perceived and covered in the global media.
Filling the social media gap
The social media advantage
Social media is compelling, because it reflects genuine community sentiment and concern. So much so that politicians, the media and corporations take note. News broadcasters and newspapers frequently rely on social networks for their news and issues that present themselves in Twitter and Facebook are often a day or two ahead of what is reported on television and in print. As such it is a rich source of information - much of it in real-time.
It is unpopular in some quarters because of its informality, yet its strength lies in its ability to harvest opinion from across the board and if one still doubts the power of social media one need look no further than another minority, the black community for inspiration. “Black Twitter” has become a phenomenon in the USA, enabling the black community (especially the young, jobless and disenfranchised) to find its voice against a media industry that seems set in portraying it in a particularly prejudicial and biased way. Just take a look at this two minute video report by The New York Times (you can skip the ads after a few seconds).
However, it is a medium that needs to be used wisely (and lawfully), to engage in an informed and productive way, with the right people and at the right time. And sometimes it needs a lot of people on social media to make politicians, journalists, broadcasters, corporations and even ordinary people in the street to sit up and take note. That's where you come in. But do you know what to do?
Sign up now
Like many in the community you may be ready to play your part but have little or no experience with social media. So get up to speed and sign up for one of our free one hour social briefings online. All from the comfort of your home PC or Laptop in the evening.