Friday, February 10, 2012


One thing is certain, there is always something...

     ~ Roland Martin, is/was a CNN commentator was indefinitely suspended by that network for some "regrettable and offensive" tweets during the Super Bowl. One of those read as follows: "If a dude at your Super Bowl party is hyped about David Beckham's H&M underwear ad, smack the ish out of him! #superbowl." Bet I know who will be headlining TribeFest 3.

     ~ Dan Brown, the thoughtful and insightful founder and publisher of eJewishPhilanthropy, wrote a thoughtful and insightful commentary on 9 February questioning the aims and "achievements"  of JFNA's multi-million investment in its Marketing and Communications. It's worth reading; although JFNA didn't think so. Later that same day JFNA's Joe Berkofsky, whom I usually hold in high regard, having been delegated the obligation to respond (apparently by those who wouldn't deign to do so), ripped off a "non-response" that fits the title of this Post. Let's look at what Berkofsky/JFNA wrote and note how that "non-response" proved Dan Brown's very points:

     ` "We always welcome constructive dialogue about JFNA." I have heard this so often and it is so laughable. 

     ` Brown's commentary is then characterized as "erroneous speculation based on supposition and lack of facts." In fact, Brown's piece was premised on the reality that JFNA's marketing and communications "efforts" wholly failed to provide facts on which the North American Jewish polity could rely.

     ` Berkofsky pointed to the "...thousands of news stories (arising out of) an actionable strategic communications plan." Hey, Joe, the word "actionable" has as its primary definition "providing grounds for legal action..." But...we get your point, whatever it may have been.

     ` Because, you see, after citing a broad array of media in which "JFNA stories" have appeared, Berkofsky goes on to cite the "impact" as "...being quantifiably measured in hundreds of millions of viewers." Not hundreds of thousands or even tens of millions...but hundreds of millions. And the source for that "quantifiable measure?" Unexplained. Unknown. Non-existent? Whoever sourced the "hundreds of millions" count must be the same person who offers attendance figures at GAs and TribeFest and in "touches" of Community Heroes. Great work!!

As I read the rest of the broadside, I mused: where are the citations to Dan Brown's "erroneous speculation based on supposition and a lack of facts." Finding none I thought was the best/worst commentary of all on JFNA's Marketing and Communications effort.

     ` I have read with continuing interest, the spate of TribeFest invites, reminders, etc. I like the idea of putting young leaders to speak on panels on subjects they may know something about. I have always had a problem with attempts at "cute" in titling sessions such as Generation Change: How to Occupy Your (Jewish) Community Now, or Zionism and Liberalism: Lifelong Partners or A One Night Stand?  And, with few JFNA staff on the Program (at least for now) and having to get to Las Vegas before the preposterous add-on Leadership Development Institute begins Sunday a.m., and presuming that JFNA has continued an UJA policy of no travel on Shabbat, just how many staffers will have an expense paid weekend in Las Vegas starting pre-Shabbat? I know they'll all come back energized on Wednesday.

Shabbat shalom.


1 comment:

Anonymous said...

These days "actionable" can also mean "able to be done or acted on; having practical value" (Oxford). But as far as I know, "doggerel" always refers to something written in verse. Did Joe try to rhyme something with "strategic communications plan"?