Blogs

iPhone App for Jewish Organizations

Applaud Mobile creates iPhone apps specifically for Jewish organizations like synagogues, temples and Jewish schools. I recently reviewed the app it created for the Solomon Schechter Day School in Newton, Massachusetts. Tamir and Marcia Borensztajn, active lay leaders in their community and parents at SSDS, came up with the Applaud Mobile app.

Applaud Mobile: An App to Help Jewish Organizations & Congregations Connect to their Mobile Community

NPR's gift to its enemies

I haven't blogged about NPR's clumsy firing of commentator Juan Williams for saying he gets nervous when boarding an airplane when there are Muslims in line with him, mostly because I'm not exactly sure I think about the issue.

Sure, it's scapegoating and bigotry and inappropriate. Sure, I've felt the same way sometimes. It's hard to sort out.

What is clear: NPR's leadership didn't think through the consequences of their actions in firing him, and in the process gave their conservative opponents the best possible gift.

Long Distance Bar Mitzvah

Many Jewish day schools are taking good advantage of technology these days. I was very impressed when I heard about how one Jewish day school in Detroit -- Hillel Day School -- made it possible for a family to celebrate a bar mitzvah together even though one cousin was in Mongolia.

Bar Mitzvah in Detroit Reaches Mongolia

Generation Gap On Intermarriage Views

You probably won’t be surprised by one of the key findings of a new study, since it confirms what many of us have been observing for awhile: Jewish leaders in their 20s and 30s are much less concerned about intermarriage than are older Jewish leaders.

But you may be surprised that the person (dispassionately) reporting this trend is Jack Wertheimer, a Jewish Theological Seminary professor and frequent contributor to Commentary, in a study for the Avi Chai Foundation.

Taking a Chance at Love

“Do me a favor, Abby,” said my girlfriend to me as we had a little snacky-snack on Emek Refaim a few hours before Shabbat.

“Just give the next guy a chance. Whoever he is…”

Publicity Is Too Damn Cheap

For PR reps who spend their time on "call and place" duty for high-priced firms, probably the only thing worse than the inevitably low success ratio is the realization that the people who seem to get the most publicity in the world are people who get it for free.

Celebrating `Jews And Money’ At The Four Seasons

I didn’t know whether to smile or cringe on receiving an invitation to an upcoming book party for Abe Foxman, the national director of the ADL, on his new book, “Jews and Money: The Story of a Stereotype."

The party is being hosted by Jack Rudin, a major real estate magnate in New York, and will take place at The Four Seasons, a restaurant associated with wealth, if not lavish wealth.

What were they thinking? I wondered.

Making Your Website Work for Your Synagogue or Jewish Organization

Quite often I get asked to consult synagogues on their Web presence. The first thing I do is take a look at their current Web site and try to determine in which year it was created. I can usually tell its production date within a few years based on several factors. I then explain what a Web site should do today. After I explain its function, I let them know that the look of the site matters less today than its functionality. Today's Web site needs to be an extension of the community the synagogue is trying to create (or in some cases, has already created). 

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Election 2010: it's not about Israel

Yesterday we posted a nice Ron Kampeas preview of the 2010 congressional midterms, now only two weeks away.

Ron argues this is an election like none other in recent history, with many races too close to call and an angry public mood that makes predictions even riskier than usual.

Of Surveys And Kosher Beignets

I have to admit that at least half the time that I start those online “Survey Monkey” questionnaires, I get bored or distracted in the middle and never end up finishing them.

However, thanks to my undying loyalty to The Cause and my desire to win a $100 gift certificate to Amazon.com, I just finished the Jewish Outreach Institute’s survey to assess the “needs and preferences of American Jews” (or at least the needs and preferences of those American Jews who like shopping at Amazon.com).

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