Chag is definitely over. Students are back in school; parents into their daily routine and the coffee shops of Emek Refaim are largely depleted of tourists. Israel’s nonprofit world is beginning to awake and will be followed tomorrow by the Diaspora community. There was not all that much newsworthy the past two weeks; and with the Easter holiday coinciding with Pesach, the nonprofit world in general was somewhat quiet.
We, like most others in the Jewish media world, slowed down; our Web traffic and our open rates dipped.
Yet, I wonder, was anyone really listening? After all, even for those working, it was a somewhat ‘laid-back’ ten days. Were some stories intentionally published, or other news released, specifically during this period of reduced awareness?
One must consider if the publicity surrounding the possible closure of the Cincinnati and Los Angeles campuses of Hebrew Union College was expressly timed for a period when the College was on vacation, students and staff away, thus making questioning College administrators challenging. On the Jerusalem campus this morning, students expressed frustration about the lack of good information affecting their educational plans. The current state of the economy compounds the problem. Some see transferring to RRC or Hebrew College preferable to living in New York and the increased costs they will incur.
Here in Israel, Bibi led his own Saturday night massacre with his announcement supporting Natan Sharansky to replace Zeev Bielski at the Jewish Agency. One can only assume that a Motzei Shabbat communique had the sole purpose of catching the Diaspora community in the middle of a weekend. But, which way will the Diaspora delegates vote in June? Remember, they turned down Sharansky last time around.
We will be focused during the next few days on playing catch-up; particularly with bringing you updates on several recent (and one upcoming) professional conferences and the abundance of informative and useful resource information that always surrounds events such as these. The week will also bring posts by all our regular contributors along with news we hope you will find interesting and helpful.
For those of you who were away, we highlight two specific items we linked to during Chag appearing in the Israeli press. The Jerusalem Post and Haaretz each have the largest, by far, Internet distribution to North America of any Jewish media. And it seems they are both leveraging that advantage to address larger stories in the global Jewish world. Both of these two articles touch on the current economic crisis, leadership issues abroad and priorities for the global Jewish community.
Charity begins with priorities (Jerusalem Post)
Lastly, if you haven’t seen Gary Rosenthal’s piece on John Ruskay and Jeffrey Solomon’s contribution to the newest issue of The Journal of Jewish Communal Service, here’s the link. And you can also subscribe to The Journal here.