The Australian Jewish News reports on the launch of Dr Oboler’s CIE project

Dalia Sable, ZFA’s innovative internet initiative, The Australian Jewish News, 18 December 2009, p 11

To help the community become more involved with the online world, the Zionist Federation of Australia (ZFA) has this month launched the unique Community Internet Engagement (CIE) Project. Headed by online expert, Dr Andre Oboler, regarded for his research into online anti-Semitism and Internet issues affecting Israel, the project aims to build on the established community infrastructure and get Jews online collectively.

“Jews have always been big on communication. We are a literate people who valued books long before many other cultures. Today we need to take that online,” Dr Oboler told the AJN.

With the assistance of two part time employees, Dr Oboler plans to ensure that all community organisations have a functioning website, in addition to having skills to discover, communication and share information.

“The CIE project is about connecting organisations with their members, and with each other. It is about removing barriers and bringing us closer together and closer to Israel,” Dr Oboler said. “We will work in partnership with the existing organisations, giving new skills to the community leaders and those that work for the community. We will be leaders in research into online issues that affect the community… from the positives of sharing simchas, to the problems that threaten and challenge us, we’ll be there working hand in hand with the community.”

The CIE will provide basic services – such as the building of small websites, occasionla updates, training, advice and public discussions – to the community free of charge. Dr Oboler said his team also aims to get the community blogging.

While based at the ZFA, the initative also involves the Executive Council of Australian Jewry.

Enquiries: www.internetengagement.com.au

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