07 January 2010

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It's deja vu all over again!

Another article complaining about birthright follow-up, this time from Haviv Retteg Gur in the Jerusalem Post and a riposte from Rabbi Daniel Brenner explaining that there is follow-up. Daniel is quite right--there is follow-up. I think we all understand that it's just not enough.

This tired boxing match can come to a happy end when the simple request that many of us having been making for nearly a decade is met: share the lists of participants with organizations out there in the Jewish community that you trust to follow-up in a meaningful way with birthright participants.

Or, have the courage of your convictions to put in writing why you won't share those lists with say, me and my synagogue. Now THAT would be fun reading!

But in the meantime, this recycled old tale is a snoozer.

Have a nice day!

5 comments:

Anonymous said...

There are good reasons for not sharing these lists. Other Jewish groups don't share their mailing lists either. Privacy, spam and outdated contact information as well as the fact that participants are at an age when people tend to move between cities rather frequently are all good reasons not to share these lists. Perhaps you'd be better off pushing for a voluntary opt-in to a database instead.

hineni said...

Yes, there are good reasons for not sharing these lists. But there are better reasons for sharing them, starting with the need to protect the investment that has been made in these young people. I'm with Rabbi Bachman on this one.

Andy Bachman said...

"Privacy, spam, and outdated information" doesn't sound right, unless you're Microsoft in the mid 1990s. Working out a solid strategy for sharing information sounds more like the era I live in.

JBBdude said...

I heard a complaint on NPR that Birthright doesn't show kids the Palestinian territories. http://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=122416343 IMHO, that *kinda* isn't the point of it at all...

jepaikin said...

If the goal of birthright is truly to allow Jews to connect with Israel, Judaism, and other Jews in a meaningful matter, then this is just another example of the supreme hypocrisy of not sharing the contact info. Andy's absolutely correct - it's 2010... there are incredibly easy ways to share this information while still respecting privacy rights.

But if they think the trips on their own can accomplish the goal of connecting Jews to Judaism, Israel, and other Jews in a truly meaningful way, then they've really missed the boat.

If, on the other hand, Birthright's goal is to foster proprietary "one-shot-deal" trips that further segment the Jewish population into silos based on politics and interest, then this makes sense...