Technology: Advocacy in the 21 st Century <ul><li>Sean Thibault - Communications Director, Religious Action Center of Reform Judaism </li></ul><ul><li>Rabbi Scott Sperling - Director, URJ Mid-Atlantic Council </li></ul>
<ul><li>One who learns from his companion a single chapter, a single law, a single verse, a single expression, or even a single letter, should accord him respect. </li></ul><ul><li>Ethics of the Fathers 6:3 </li></ul>
<ul><li>The broad range of communication technology tools available to us have amply demonstrated how valuable they can be in building community. </li></ul><ul><li>Social networking has become an unstoppable force in our society, bringing people together for many purposes. </li></ul><ul><li>Clearly, advocacy on behalf youth has been greatly enhanced by this phenomenon. </li></ul><ul><li>Yet, as the expression goes, With great power comes great responsibility. </li></ul>
<ul><li>Where do we draw the boundaries of appropriate and inappropriate use of these technological wonders? </li></ul><ul><li>How do we help keep the intersection of youth and communications technology as a place where respect for Judaism’s highest values and the best interests of youth are held as sacred? </li></ul>
What is the New Standard for the intersection of technology and youth work?
BBYO’s Policy “… may not initiate any type of communication with teens… Public one-on-one communications (i.e. posting a comment to a wall) are discouraged at all times.” “ Should a professional, advisor, summer staff or volunteer choose to maintain a virtual presence and see something on a teen’s profile that is immoral and/or illegal, it is the responsibility of the adult to notify their field services supervisor” BBYO is a youth-led organization, staff should utilize teen leaders to broadcast virtual messages to teen online communities before issuing any type of information online (message board posts, group messages) themselves.
NFTY’s OurSpace Initiative “… some statements made online are in direct conflict with middot , our Jewish values, including but not limited to: lev tov - a caring heart, mechaven et sh’muato – determining exactly what one hears, seyag l’dvarav – guarding one’s speech, and machrio l’chaf zechu t – judging others favorably” “… we support each individual’s right to freedom of speech…”
Media Literacy & Me <ul><li>First of all you have to get over the ancient belief that adults know better than youth themselves what is good for youth! </li></ul><ul><li>It is easier to be in the same network with youth than ever before! </li></ul><ul><li>Support the developing of self-concept and self-confidence of a young - this is ensures coping in all areas of life, including virtual worlds. </li></ul>