For the past couple of years, a group of us have celebrated Shavuot by “Tweeting #Torah to the Top.” We’re on Twitter (you can find me at @CoffeeShopRabbi) and in the hours before Shavuot, we tweet divrei Torah [words of Torah] to try to get to the top of the “trending” [most Tweeted] list. Every year, I’ve had fun, I’ve met some terrific Jews, and enjoyed a symbolic celebration of this least-celebrated festival.
If you are wondering how to do it, see what my esteemed colleague Rabbi Mark Hurwitz has to say:
I have been exploring how to use Twitter and Facebook as tools for Jewish community organizing. We know that these social media were central to the revolution that overthrew the Mubarak regime in Egypt. How might we use them to raise consciousness among the Jewish people around the world?
Beginning in 2009 Reconstructionist rabbi Shai Gluskin organized an attempt to bring Torah to as many people as possible on the evening of Shavuot, using Twitter. As he expressed it then (on Twitter):
Are you in? A 49th day of omer prep for Shavuot #Torah fest. Goal: get many tweeting Torah and see #Torah trend in top 10 the whole day.
Each year, those who participated enjoyed a great day of learning, sharing, and meeting. Jews (and others) all over the world, from various walks of life and “flavors” of Jewish life, tweeted what they thought were valuable and important thoughts of Torah. Nonetheless, we have never been able to get “#Torah” to “trend”. Is it because, however broadly defined, “#Torah” is simply not of interest to the vast majority of Jewish tweeters?
What can we do to make #Torah go viral? Are there tools that those of us committed to this effort are missing? I open the question up to this forum for discussion and invite you all to join our project.
This year (2013:5773) our event is scheduled to begin May 14. You can learn more and indicate your interest on our Facebook page:
If you’d like to participate, please indicate so on the event’s Facebook page:
You don’t have to be a rabbi.
You don’t have to belong to anything (other than have a Twitter account.)
If you’ve never tweeted, well, here’s a chance to try it.
C’mon! We’ll have fun!