Haaretz whines over JBlog conferenceHaaretz published an article on Tuesday about the upcoming JBloggers conference. As you may recall, yours truly is sitting on one of the panels. Given that during the 2007 weblog awards, Haaretz chose to cover a leftist Jewish blogger in England and none of the Israeli nominees, it shouldn't surprise anyone that their coverage of the upcoming conference complains that there are too many right-wing Orthodox panelists.
While some influential bloggers scorned the First International Jewish Bloggers Convention in Jerusalem as one-sided and agenda-driven, the organizers maintain that not only will many attend the event physically, but hundreds more will join from in front of their computer screens.Aussie Dave, the father of Israeli blogging (I think he's been blogging longer than any of us), takes some of the the complainers in the Haaretz article to task:
Personally, I'm actually hoping Lisa will show up. But I must admit I'm inclined to agree with Aussie Dave's assessment.
But here’s the deal. Anyone can register, and the panelists were chosen mainly on the basis of traffic and influence. And given that Nefesh B’Nefesh’s agenda is to promote aliyah (immigration to Israel), they have chosen pro-Israel bloggers, and probably tried to steer clear of controversial Jewish bloggers, who’s agenda includes bashing their fellow Jews.
I am a particularly disappointed in the attitude of fellow anglo-Israel blogger Lisa Goldman, who claims no interest in the conference since she’s “more interested in the complexities of Israeli life than in blogging about aliyah-related themes,” and “would have preferred a conference for Israeli bloggers where Arabs could participate.” She also throws in the “politically slanted” argument. Besides the apparent condescension, Lisa also claims she doesn’t “like agenda blogging.” Sorry, Lisa, but I am calling BS on that. What you do is agenda blogging (your agenda being to promote Arab-Israeli dialog). What you meant is you “don’t like blogging for an agenda that does not fit mine.”
For the record, although I am sitting on one of the panels, I was not offered a flight to New York and back (which may be because I took a while to respond to their invitation - I'm making a wedding the week after next and wanted to make sure I would be able to attend the conference before I accepted a panelist's position). But hey - there's always next year!
Read the whole thing. If I'm going to get to meet Aussie Dave there, that would be really cool :-)