Tuesday, August 01, 2006

Israel Backed by Army of Cyber-Soldiers

This article explains alot to me about blogs and polls over the net. It seems the war can only be won on every single front. Organization is key to success, but changing world media or polls by forcing ideas through sheer numbers is where bias starts. Thanks AB for this article based on facts.

From Yonit Farago in Jerusalem
The Times
28th July,2006

While Israel fights Hezbollah with tanks and aircraft, its supporters are campaigning on the internet.
Israel’s Government has thrown its weight behind efforts by supporters to counter what it believes to be negative bias and a tide of pro-Arab propaganda. The Foreign Ministry has ordered trainee diplomats to track websites and chatrooms so that networks of US and European groups with hundreds of thousands of Jewish activists can place supportive messages.
In the past week nearly 5,000 members of the World Union of Jewish Students (WUJS) have downloaded special “megaphone” software that alerts them to anti-Israeli chatrooms or internet polls to enable them to post contrary viewpoints. A student team in Jerusalem combs the web in a host of different languages to flag the sites so that those who have signed up can influence an opinion survey or the course of a debate.
Jonny Cline, of the international student group, said that Jewish students and youth groups with their understanding of the web environment were ideally placed to present another side to the debate.
“We’re saying to these people that if Israel is being bashed, don’t ignore it, change it,” Mr Cline said. “A poll like CNN’s takes just a few seconds to vote in, but if thousands take part the outcome will be changed. What’s vital is that the international face of the conflict is balanced.”
Doron Barkat, 29, in Jerusalem, spends long nights trawling the web to try to swing the debate Israel’s way. “When I see internet polls for or against Israel I send out a mailing list to vote for Israel,” he said. “It can be that after 15 minutes there will be 400 votes for Israel.
“It’s very satisfying. There are also forums where Lebanese and Israelis talk.”
Israel’s Foreign Ministry must avoid direct involvement with the campaign but is in contact with international Jewish and evangelical Christian groups, distributing internet information packs.
Amir Gissin, the Israeli Foreign Ministry’s public relations director, said: “The internet’s become a leading tool for news, shaping the world view of millions. Our problem is the foreign media shows Lebanese suffering, but not Israeli. We’re bypassing that filter by distributing pictures showing how northern Israelis suffer from Katyusha rocket attacks.”


Blogger Lilu said...

I'm not sure the point of this one Tarek... I mean, this is no news, is it? isn't this what we've all been doing since the start of this war? Getting the word out and voicing your personal opinion, trying to get as many people to listen?
ain't that the idea behind this very blog?

4:15 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

That actually kind of sucks, I prefer to hear peoples opinions whether I like them or not.

As much as I disagree with the owners of this blog on many many issues, I am enjoying hearing the other sides opinions in very very well written articles, and hopefully those who do show up here are not some flesh bot trolling the internet for either side.

4:16 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

The point about this is that any websites, blogs, polls that say anything negative about Israel are actively targeted by pro-Israeli activist who will deny, attack, call people like the writers of this blog anti-Israeli and hate spreaders, in an attempt to deflect any criticism of Israel. Hats off to the brilliance of the Israeli propaganda machine and the skill of pro-Israeli activists and the best one of them all - AIPAC.
So make sure to check out the following websites




Sign up to the last one and you'll see how efficient the Israeli propaganda machine is.

If the Arabs and pro-Arabs were as good as the Israelis in the cyber wars then this war might be over by now.

4:36 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Dead on. There is a difference between posting your point of view and posting only to counteract others. It is a sign of being overly self conscious

4:43 PM  
Anonymous from the froggy that has travelled the world said...

Well it seems that popularity for that word is now an issue..is it really...shoud we all not focus on what is currently happening with ceasefire and food aid to north of israel and lebanon..however I do not see anything saying that north israel needs any supplies...

Anyway if that war start to turn into focusing on the image it reflect on to the world i do not know where we are going....

Autrement serait il possible d'avoir l'article tant contreverse par nicole et anomymous car je n'arrive pas a ouvrir leur lien....merci tu peux me l'envoyer sur jeannelr@yahoo.com

Merci d'avance

4:48 PM  
Anonymous a froggy that has travelled the world said...

well I just found a blog from a FRench in Israel..sorry it is not afcts...but might give us an idea of how they feel...I did not succeed into getting the direct link to the blog which is wirtten in French...but only through LCI website...


5:09 PM  
Anonymous Hadi said...

watch out Lebanon.... this is coming soon to your land.......


Hizbullah is looking for your support.
Please all support the rule all over Lebanon.


7:56 PM  
Anonymous tool said...

oh we are so facked!

8:19 PM  
Blogger Bash said...

Somehow I don't see how Northerners suffering in Israel can compare with Babies being killed in Dahyeh and the South of Lebanon

9:05 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Thats exactly the problem though, if your truly against the killings, you have to be against it all, and not just the proportionally un-balanced sides. Men, women, children, jewish, arab, whatever they may be, they're still dying, and that is the real issue. Not which side of the border their on when it happens.

9:12 PM  
Anonymous tool said...

fack he's right!

9:18 PM  
Blogger Anon said...

Could this initiative actually be a ‘cloud with a silver lining’...hinging on the fact that trainee diplomats have been tasked with the job? OK, so they may be the juniors earning the low salaries, spending their time making the tea and coffee, having been given the role as others are too important. But one day they’ll be the ones with the power and influence.

When being allowed to endlessly surf surely they will be exposed to the truth. No matter how indoctrinated, contrived or belligerent their intentions, or remit, no-one can be immune to the influence of unabridged knowledge.

It can be argued, although not holistically, to be win-win, surely...any unfair drastic claims can be balanced by the other side’s view, whilst this ‘other side’ can be awakened as to the atrocities that are being committed, which may start questions being asked as to why. Questions which will demand proper, researched answers.

The balance, benevolence and intelligence that Lilu exhibits, for example, will be an asset to any ‘trainee diplomat’ given exposure to the granularity of what really goes on...

10:48 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Thank you anonym, that is exactly the point that no one's getting. If the world were more focussed on the humanitarian aspect: that the single most important thing is to save the civilians from suffering (on both sides) wouldn't an immediate cease-fire be the most essential step?? they can talk about their political conditions and arguments AFTER the cease-fire.

10:50 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hezbollah only needs to say "we will disarm and let our government run the country" and a cease fire would be instant.

This internet thing kind of reminds me of when the U.S., and I am American, was putting false articles in newspapers in Iraq. Almost all news sources are biased, bu8t I would like to keep the internet as honest as possible...I believe it is the honesty of the internet that draws everyone here. I think almost ALL governments HATE the fact they have trouble controlling what we see and read online.

2:53 PM  
Anonymous tool said...

you must be facking kidding me. fack!

5:29 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

tool , what is 'facking' and 'fack' mean in plain english?

5:44 PM  
Anonymous tool said...

fack u!

9:36 PM  
Blogger Richard said...

Whoa is that pathetic! They're fulfilling their "patriotic duty" by voting in online polls for Israel? And that's "very satisfying?" Hmmm.

No wonder the Israeli "hasbarah" (PR or propaganda in Hebrew) is faring so poorly. You can't create very effective propaganda when your own side produces so much horrific bad press for you to combat.

I'm an American Jew who, believe it or not, believes that Israel COULD BE a peace-loving nation & holds out hope that this may happen sometime in the future. I have two sites which oppose the current war, Tikun Olam, my blog; and Israel Palestine Blogs, a blog aggregator of 30 Israeli, Palestinian, Lebanese, & Diaspora Arab & Jewish peace blogs.

I invite yr readers to visit when or if they have the chance.

10:15 AM  
Blogger Lilu said...

People, people, now you are really exaggerating.

You talk as if the Israeli propaganda is Israelis hacking their way around the internet, taking down sites, altering content, paying people just to spam and fix poll results and pasting falsified realities over existing ones. Not so at all. I have that software running on my computer and all it does is alert me to various EXISTING net events and items related to the war, legitimate and open platforms (such as various polls, blogs, as well as informative content such as videos and essays) - and it suggests I participate, with a focus on the Israeli side. The choice whether to participate and how, what to do with the information and where, is ALL MINE. In under no circumstance does this program silence anyone's different views or prevent exposure to them. It is just there to help a specific group of people expose their own opinions more efficiently in places that are intended for that very purpose.
The users of the software are people that already have a formed opinion and, much like the authors of this blog, feel the need and recognise the personal importance to express it (especially those trainee diplomats - you know, they don't make that career choice because they think it would make them rich, they do it out of idealism). They do this because, much like the authors of this blog, they feel they need to raise awareness to their point of view and are using the internet to do so. I wonder which of you bloggers and talkbackers would call this illegitimate. Again - these software users are not attempting to blind or silence anyone, merely to add their own point of view to those already out there. This is the same as someone who would send his friends a link to a net event he thinks is important and wants to draw attention to. Is that also wrong? Are we to have our opinions but keep them to ourselves?
If an internet poll result comes out pro-Israeli, it is because the majority of the voters voted in favor of Israel. This is how internet polls work. This is how they're supposed to work. Unless the results are fixed by a spam bot or something doing multiple voting (which is not the issue here), the result is perfectly legitimate and does not reflect anything other than reality - this group of people took the time to answer the poll, the majority of them think X. If you don't agree with that majority, well that is your right, but you must accept that this is their opinion.
"any websites, blogs, polls that say anything negative about Israel are actively targeted by pro-Israeli activist who will deny, attack, call people like the writers of this blog anti-Israeli and hate spreaders, in an attempt to deflect any criticism of Israel" - I'm sorry I really don't see what the problem is. Why should'nt a pro-Israeli activist try to counter an anti-Israeli rhetoric? if he sees someone expressing what is in his opinion an anti Israeli view, why shouldn't he challenge it? this is something he believes in. How is it any different than a Lebanese on an Israeli blog defending Hizballah, if this is what he believes in?
Part of having an opinion is that it counters others'. This is what dialog is for. Discussions and exchange of different and opposing views.
Most of all - no one's doing anything criminal, it's not hurting anyone. No one's pulling down websites. The net audience is free as always to make up their own minds about what they see. And frankly I have to say I think such civilised free speech propaganda as poll voting and blog talkbacking is much more legitimate than the shock value gore propaganda most of the Lebanese net activists seem to be employing (including this blog).

Don't get out of proportion (no pun intended) - now the Israelis are evil for being a little creative and organised?

3:50 AM  
Anonymous bigberta said...

Hello, I will translate this posting also into German and you will find it (latest after weekend) on my blog.

2:45 AM  

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