About the webpage and the list
Our newsletter is sent once or twice a week to the Wheels Of Justice listserve and to other listserves totaling some 50,000 email addresses. We sent a survey to the WOJ listserve (part of the population which receives those messages) and asked for feedback in the form of filling a survey and adding text comments. Over 320 people responded in the first 48 hours which gave us a great statistical sample. We will spend time to analyze the data and thus modify the way the messages are sent. Thanks to all who responded to the survey request. Initial results are posted below but first, you might want to read this interview with the fall 2008 issue of The Link (published by Americans for Middle East Understanding) about this website and the listserve.
The Survey Results
Initial impressions of the survey results: Need to send more concise messages that are less comprehensive. Areas readers are most interested in are a listing/summary at top with links for additional information as needed, Reports from people under occupations in Iraq and Palestine and News articles (items not reported in mainstream media). Most people skimmed through the material reading only parts of it that they are interested in (57% on average) and found what they read useful (79% on average). It was very interesting to read what other topics readers were interested in besides topics we listed. The additional comments provided were insightful and flattering. We need to digest these data more carefully to act on them. Thanks to all who responded.
33 REMOVE me/unsubscribe me; I am not interested to receive messages
48 I do not read most messages but want to continue receiving them
257 I do read or scan a majority of the messages and want to continue receiving them
Regarding the frequency of posts:
39 You are sending too many messages, suggest you cut back
172 You are sending with roughly the right frequency and size
63 Frequency is good but content too much (see also below to fine tune content)
21 You can send more messages than two per week (three!)
Regarding contents (rated 1 to 5, five being most important). AVERAGE SCORE RESULTS arranged by most highly scored
4.5 A paragraph at the top that comments on contents and highlights importance of relevant areas
4.4 Reports from people under occupations in Iraq and Palestine
4.4 News articles (items not reported in mainstream media)
4.0 Press releases and reporst from human and civil rights groups
3.9 Reportback on activist events and other successes
3.9 Text Stories (like Monas's story)
3.8 Action calls for contacting media, politicians etc
3.8 Links to informative Videos on the internet
3.8 Opinion pieces by others relevant to human and civil rights
3.8 Reviews of books and documentaries
3.8 Links to new websites
3.5 Action calls/announcements for local events
3.4 Action calls/announcements for national events
3.1 Wheels of Justice bus tour updates
Average Time of subscription 27 months (range 1 month to 10 years)*
Average Percentage of material sent that is read 59%
Average % of what is read that is found useful 83%
* Interesting side observation: I checked 10 random members for the length of time they thought they were subscribed and compared to actual length (from listserve records) and found that most understimated the length of time they were subscribed by 1-5 years!
OTHER CONTENT SUGGESTED
Items about alternative approaches to Palestinian-Israeli co-existence
Items about strategies to be more effective in reaching Israeli, Jewish, and other people who are now sitting at some point(s) alomg the fence...
Soliciting ideas about the last two suggestions.
Promote the importance of more action group to respond quickly to the misrepresentation of media to the injustices inflected in the Middle East and the need to promote fair, justice and equality to all people
More news about the war in Iraq
Israeli/Palestinian peace work and ways we can support it
ACADEMIC ISSUES IN THE REGION
More on One State, and information about the opinions of people in Palestine about the One State solution
Signs of hope, historical info
Analysis of political conjunctures
Differences among various Palestinian groups -- 1 vs 2-state differences, discussions, etc.; Israeli pro-Palestinian groups' actions_
Your own speculations, as a newcomer and scientist, about US culture (what Pope JPII called our "culture of death") e.g. racism and violence in the US.
Political activity in the United States aimed at getting elected officials to change their cooperation with Israel and to be more open and honest about telling the truth about what Israel is doing.
How we can generate community interest for activist events, especially outside of the activist side; effectively dealing with Zionist blow-back in media and at public events
Legal cases in USA and elsewhere.
More personal stories/essays, B'tselem videos documenting settler violence are powerful and important tools_
More independent media stories, particularly ones that are palatable to our friends and family who may not already be aware of the situation. I think an article a week that could be passed on to people we know would be great, even if it's an article that covers information we (your subscribers) are already know. Sort of an "Occupation for Dummies" series.
campaign updates for US Pres and Sen candidates...how do we wean them off AIPAC so we have a fair election not dominated by our 51st state and its needs and wants? what do Mearsheimer and Walt advise?
9/11 as a false flag attack which it so obviously was, and what that has done to help villify Palestinians
Get some audiobooks of contemporary usefull books, there is more audio books from israelis diplomats and pro-israel camps then the other side of the argument.
Politicians response to petitions and activities
I would like more comments on the Egyptian involvement with the Palestinian/Israeli Peace Negotations
Local meetings, actions, and community activity
More about HR in Palestine both sections
Non-violent resistance efforts
More Legal stuff... how do things relate specifically to human rights law, and what can be done about it
Efforts to impact other organizations' work on Palestine/Israel reconciliaton
I WOULD LIKE TO SEE MORE STUFF ABOUT OBAMA'S STANCE ON ZIONISM AND ISRAEL.
Examples of when art and poetry intersect with political issues
Israeli peace movement, regular bulletins on settlements
More info about anti Zionist groups in the US
A downloadable "paper" to send to Representatives /Senators showing abuse by Israel the COUNTRY which needs to be distinguished from Israel the home of Jewish people
More coordination between American Palestinian organizations
Perhaps the addition of opportunities to travel to Palestine, beyond the activist networks, many of which are poorly organized and typically composed of young, hearty souls, who can stand to sleep on the floor, and run around incessantly, with little sleep!
I do feel overwhelmed with emails sometimes but your emails are ALWAYS informative and contain important and pertinent information often available nowhere else. THANK YOU for helping me stay informed!
Keep up the good work. Thanks for doing this!
You already cover a great deal of information on a broad array of topics. I suggest shortening the format, with more links for further information. Thank you for sharing your perspectives, Dr. Qumsiyeh.
Summarize the articles and news, but allow people who want to read more, a link of some kind to be able to read full article.
Thanks for all your efforts. Itís not easy to compile and maintaint such a listserve.
I am not interested in events simply because I live in Italy, but all the same I do look at them to see if we can take any ideas, for boycott , for example. Thank you for your grate job.
Keep up the good work. It must take you hours! Best wishes,
You perform a valuable political and intellectual service, the least of which should be resourced in some way.
I find your emails extremely informative and important.
I can't make the survey accept any typing, so I can't fill it out.
But I am feeling very overloaded now, so I read only certain articles, mostly the action items to legislators & press, petitions, news articles about Palestine we don't get otherwise, and encouraging reports of successful protest actions. I have also followed some of the links to some good stories printed in foreign media but not here.
Excellent work, excellent service, many thanks!
I feel that the "table of contents" and a paragraph at the top about the contents is really useful for me to find sections/articles that are of interest to me.
I HAVE ANSWERED ONE OR TWO OF THESE; ALL ARE SIGNIFICANT, I DO NOT FEEL ABLE TO RANK THEM, PARTLY BECAUSE I LIVE SO FAR AWAY.
I'M A VERY VERY BUSY RETIRED PERSON, SO ....
I APPRECIATE WHAT YOU ARE DOING, AND WOULD BE SURPRISED IF IT IS NOT ACHIEVING WHAT YOU WANT.
Keep'em coming! You can't make everybody happy, just do what feels right. Hope next time you're in Eugene we can visit a bit longer instead of having to rush off to DC to arrest the Prez.
We continue to be amazed and impressed by your work--it is encouraging and uplifting to hear of your positive, non-violent attitude.
I sometimes don't have time to read these, but try to skim them. The most useful things to me are articles that I can forward to our mailing lists but for that I need links to a web source. I already get stuff from IPS, JVP, US Campaign, Today in Palestine, etc. which is why I sometimes don't have time to read yours! Also, what is unique and great about yours is the link to activism and ideas that can be copied or adapted. _
Nice would be more coverage of legislative items, the political environment in Washington, etc. Otherwise yours is best e-newsletter I have subscribed to. Like most activists, I am very busy. I only read about half the emails you send out. Very key to have notice at top or in Subject heading if something is very important. Alternately, you should consider sending important/very useful stuff out repeatedly.
I can't respond to every posting I get and when I skim them, I weed out which seem to be the most essential AND are within my power to act on but the way they all seem to be #1 immediate, emergency, etc., makes it hard to set priorities. I know, in a way, they ARE ALL immediate emergencies -- Daily I think of what's going on in Palestine and want to do something, anything to STOP it. But, I don't have the power to do that. So, I have to decide which things are the most likely to lead to the best, soonest just resolution. But when all things are trumpeted as the most important, I give up in frustration. .
WE HAVE A LARGE PALESTINIAN POPULATION IN THE TAMPA BAY AREA AS WELL AS AVID CHURCH AND CHRISTIAN SUPPORTERS OF PALESTINE: WOMEN-OF-FAITH BUILDING COMMUNITY IS AN INTERFAITH GROUP OF WOMEN INTERESTED IN YOUR WORK AND WOULD LIKE WHEELS OF JUSTICE TO VISIT OUR AREA.
I am in marketing/advertising and I know this is a great cause so I am behind it 100%. The injustice is just wrong, but most Americans do not get the real story and many don't really care anyway. Your messages need to short and sweat, really "hit them between the eyes". People have too many emails and too little time - they need to be drawn in - yes, you might not have all the "meat" that people need to know about, but again, you have to get their attention and get their sympathy without making them read a full page of print. Yes, this is all about marketing, but the reality is, you need to create awareness and get people interested because most are superficial and don't want to be bothered. Our media and government do a great job of not reporting the truth and even hiding the truth so it is important to get people's attention and most have a short attention span. I am thinking about starting an internet site to create awareness myself.
I read and send to friends those materials that have historical events and facts. Severyn
I like what is happening elsewhere the most.
I enjoyed meeting you and spending some time together at Building a New World in Radford, VA. Thank you for providing this important service.
IN GENERAL, I LIKE THE CONTENT YOU PROVIDE AND WOULD NOT WANT TO SEE IT CHANGED.
I can't express how important knowing you and your work has been for me during the course of my development as an activist. It has now been 5 years since I came to the Palestine movement. My transition from Zionist to Palestine activist was some of the most difficult thinking I've had to do in my life. You and many others who are courageous enough to speak out during these difficult times have provided me with analysis and guidance that have helped me sort through the difficult questions and muster my own courage to keep doing this work.
A summary at the top of each email that explains what is included would be very helpful. Often, it's difficult to read the emails in depth when there is a ton of text taking up the whole screen. A better way to navigate through these important emails would be very helpful.
Also, as you can see from my rankings, I tend to rely on this website more for stories on the ground and less for activist updates. The stories are applicable to everyone, while the activist updates are often applicable to those in the geographic region specific to the event
I read your posts occasionally, and remember some of them vividly (like the woman who was detained because her skirt zipper set off the monitor) -- it's good to be reminded that such things happen, and it balances the many pro-Israel articles elsewhere. As long as you don't mind my deleting your posts when I don't have the time or the inclination to read them, I would like to receive them, and have the option of reading or not.
Thank you for asking!....now the data collation MORE WORK!!!..thank you so much!!
You are a voice of real sanity regarding the issues. But essentially, all I really have to say is keep up the good work, though not at the expense of over-taxing your own quality of life and that of those closest to you.
All of its informative, but I receive some of the information from other individuals and groups. Better to have duplicates than not be informed.
_I would like to see you be a little less strident in your anti-Zionism; it alienates a friend who tries hard to do "compassionate listening" and finds your kind of activism to be too divisive and dependent on fomenting outrage/anger, which are not producing any kind of solution or resolution.
Perhaps you could have 2 send-outs: one for international, one for national (US)
You operate an amazing, insightful, and enlightening. Please keep doing what you're doing, we appreciate it.
I tend to be more interested in hard news than personal stories/experiences. New websites/projects spark my interest. I wouldn't mind seeing more academic work, but I realize this is an activist email list, not the JPS. Thanks for taking the time to do these updates.
You should periodically do a short piece on reliable sources of info and give links and which have RSS feeds
I have no complaints whatever. I appreciate what you send and
generally read every posting. Good to see you at the General Assembly
and I think that we who advocate strongly for Palestine did very well.
It was very gratifying to get update on Rachel Corrie. I was a little surprised that more content has not been a part of your updates.
I was disappointed to have emailed the email address given on the bus tour site twice asking for information regarding when and if the bus was ever going to return to my area (Phoneix, AZ) that were never answered. As so many web sites don't offer information if you can't provide it. a return email just acknowledging someone read it goes a long way.
Dear Mazin, I couldn't fill in the questionnaire but I'd like you to know that I find your emails very interesting. The frequency is just about right, the content is excellent and I am fascinated to discover all the things that you do in the States and can sometimes use information in our own advocacy here in England. Public opinion is very much in turn with the Palestinians and it is much easier to talk about previously 'unacceptable' issues like ethnic cleansing and the apartheid state. However, unfortunately, this shift in public opinion does not translate into government policy which is still shamefully 100% behind Israel. Still, we keep slogging away. Very best wishes to you, keep sending me your news, Ann Wright
Keep it up, and "sursum corda"
I consider this one of the most important sources and resources available. The information here has enabled me to single-handedly oppose and counter the policies of AIPAC and the statements and propaganda of a local national AIPAC Board member, Jerrold Weissman. Thank you so much for doing this. And for bringing the Wheels of Justice to Great Falls.
I feature parts of it in nearly every Montana Green Bulletin, and leave in the websites even when I have a lot of other Palestinian and anti-Zionist content (as in the current issue).
Thanks for all your sincere work...! Sorry but only your actions in the USA are not that interesting for me in the Netherlands.
I think you are doing PHD quality work, I admire your stamina, nothing is wasted. I have been working at home and haven't had lots of time but am looking for a way that I can do more.
I do like your e-mails even if I do not have time to read a fraction of what I receive. Please note that I feel your newsletter is one of the best that I receive and would likely read it more carefully if I lived in the U.S. I live in Canada. I would likely read more carefully if I lived in the US.
Like a french speaking, I'am diffuculties to read quickly and good in english, but I' read a little. I'am also interisting because I'am jew, no religious and antisionist (I have family in Israel) and i don't support that a state speaks in my name.
I'am for the solution One state laic and democratic for all Palestinians and all refugees and all Israelians. I support the association for "one state in Palestine-Israel.
And I finish with this word in esperanto
I suggest a digest format, with links to articles. Links could be either to tags in the email or to a website
Mainly I want to know what specific actions I can take, especially signing petitions and letters online. I feel flooded with info that I cannot do anything about.
I receive your excellent emails from a variety of listservs which is fine with me.
I read 80 % of the messages which you send. I find your stories to be informative. At this time, however, I wish to unsubscribe.
I have been moved by the personal input in the newsletters, for instance when the author shares deep, sincere thoughts about the hypocrisy of the dominant discourse and dominant religious ideology. The newsletters are so much closer to reality than the dominant discourse.
They are ALL important and relevant- it is sometimes hard to take the time to read them all the way through, but I cannot think of anything you should leave out. Maybe you could send three that are a bit shorter, instead of two lengthy ones.
Try to condense your writing. We all get so much, and many links that it is hard to read it all.
We appreciate what you are doing. Like many people I get far too much email. Although you may have already done so it might be good if you were to write a mission statement as to what you hope to accomplish with your website (I donít mean a mission statement for your organization Ė which I am sure you have) This would focus your web communication and when I open it I would know that I donít have to sort through a lot of good but much to detailed information. Donít be discouraged by this remark. You are doing great work but your web material needs some photos and some focus and careful editing. A line at the start saying what is covered below would be helpful as well. Bless you and keep up the great work!!
No complaints, and lots of praise for what you are doing.
I FIND FIRST HAND ACCOUNTS OF PALESTINIANS UNDER OCCUPATION VERY INTERESTING AND SOMETIMES SEND THEM ON TO OTHERS WHO MAY NOT APPRECIATE THE HUMAN SUFFERING GOING ON THERE. IF IT IS WELL WRITTEN, AND IMPORTANTLY SOUNDS REASONABLE (SEE BELOW) AND REALLY GIVES A FLAVOUR OF THINGS THEN ALL THE BETTER. THERE MAY BE THOSE WHO REALLY AREN'T AWARE OF HOW THE PALESTINIANS SUFFER ON A DAILY BASIS. THE LESS ADJECTIVES AND OPINIONS OF THE WRITER COME INTO THE STORY, THE BETTER. I MEAN FROM THE POINT OF VIEW OF EDUCATING (AND GETTING ON SIDE) PEOPLE WHO WERE PREVIOUSLY IGNORANT.
I enjoy getting your newsletters VERY much. I read as much of them as I can, though I am not always able to take time to read them all. I think a paragraph and a list of what will be in the e-mail below would really help. That's a great idea.
You do such a brilliant job. I don't knopw how you do all you do.
I am very appreciative of all news items on your bulletins
There are many relevant issues, but Palestine seems the most important. Going broader would dilute that
Keep it up. I forward many of your emails.
I'm in seminary so my time is limited. Keep up your good work!
You are doing an excellent job of advocacy information and bringing reality to the situation. T
I read what you send with high interest
Very useful digest of goings-on in field .. impassioned articulate editorials
Excellent report--a must read by all Human Rights activists
I greatly admire you and your work. Thank you. Please keep it up.
I don't think the censor wants us to communicate. I wasn't able to transfer your questionnaire. I do read your postings. Sometimes more careful than others :-)
I appreciate your updates. However, since I am mostly interested in ways that I can get involved without spending money, I would like to hear more about events in the Willamette Valley (Oregon). I know that this is hard for your to do since you are sending emails out to such a large population from all over the country, so I'm not suggesting that you start to do this as it would be a lot of work. I just thought I'd let you know since I have noticed that I feel a bit left out always hearing about events on the East Coast.
Love the links to youtube excerpts that are not elsewhere
Many thanks for your dedication and work. I often pass on whole or parts of your mailing to my lists
I find your current content interesting, I just dont have time to read it all in detail cause there is so much. I know that there is a lot happening and it's hard to pick and choose which things to print so I do not envy you this dilemma.
Think about using http://www.surveymonkey.com/MySurvey_Wizard.aspx .. much easier to fill out and analyze results.
Your messages are all very important to me. I am a volunteer missionary in the Holy Land, recently returning from my eleventh visit. ...I present programs about the situation in the Holy Land for churches and other organizations in the U.S. I also spend much time reading articles on the internet and sending them on to others. I especially value your messages and insights. So, when I gave a "5" rating for each item, I truly mean it. Thank you so much
I would like to see better layout, even if not using HTML emails. This will enable faster scanning, quicker access to articles or links of interest and hence make the usefulness much greater. I am an experienced proof reader and also have developed several websites. If you can use my skills to make any of this possible, I will be happy to help.
As I live overseas, connections with other activists/progressives who would like to do more, but cannot because of living in tightly controlled countries (I live in the Gulf). How to be relevant without losing my job at a local university and getting deported? And how can I be more useful/relevant from this end?
Many colleges and universities now have Holocaust Studies, with chairs created and funded by local Jewish American supporters. I have been collecting material in the fantasy that I might someday be able to research all the Holocaust Studies chairs and invite them to learn about how to stop an ethnic cleansing while it's actually ongoing. This has to be done in a very sensitive way, but I imagine many would be horrified to know that Israel was ethnically cleasning Palestinians even before Hitler's Holocaust. You do such great scholarly work; if it's something you'd like to pursue, I'm happy to pass along the little I have at this point. The idea is still much bigger than the material to give it breadth ad breath.
Don't burn yourself out. I peruse everything you send, reading the overviews and picking out things I can pass along via my blogspot and myspace.... And I'm looking forward to your comming to Milwaukee again. The reason I graded the petitions lower is because I'm a burned out anti-war activist. So many were ignored... so many will continue to be ignored. I don't have the energy of hope to put into them anymore. It's hard enough (emotionally) to keep informed and keep informing. Best of luck. May we see the tipping point to the end of zionism... where the momentum is going downhill (versa pushing and pushing up hill)... or another analogy... where the information pump is primed that the flooding of the end of zionism comes gushing out... no stopping it.
Keep the faith, ikwani. We'll meet some day.
Sincerely grateful for receiving your e-zine. Being not an American, the Action Calls are of lesser value for me
Nice work--you have our support
Thanks, we appreciate what you are doing.
I think that you are doing a great service to promote the cause of justice and peace in the middle east.
I am attempting to be hired by OCHA for the UN (Jerusalem, Ramallah or Hebron) within the next year and your emails have been so helpful and informative.
I believe there is a great need for Palestinian-Americans and those who support Justice for Palestine/Palestinians to operate with knowledge and skill in political affairs and to get candidates to run for and get elected to political office. Too many of our elected officials are "bought and paid for" and they admit that their campaign money comes from supporters of Israel. Supporters of Justice for Palestine have to acquire their own supporters and be willing to back their candidacy. The already-elected-in-office are not going to change. If we want to change the way things are, we have to confront the opposition - not just "educate" and "talk about it", and get opponents of Israel's conduct elected to office.
Those who speak against Israel's conduct must be prepared for the defamation that is practiced by AIPAC and Foxman of the Anti-Defamation League. "Name-calling" seems to be too successful a practice; as if the "name-calling" were in itself Truth. Too many who spoke the truth simply resigned after being called "anti-Semitic". Former President Jimmy Carter, a most honorable man, has suffered greatly by the lack of support for him because he told the truth. Just how afraid of Israel and their American surrogates are we? The injustices practiced by Israel and the support given to Israel is another consequence of Hitler's treatment of the Jews. Fear has paralyzed our ability to tell the truth about Israel's wrong-doing, indirectly resulting in the continuance of the persecution visited upon the Palestinians and all who dare to speak out on their behalf. Having been the victims of Hitler's persecution is not a permit or license to treat others as Hitler treated them - but that is what is happening. We have to have the guts to say so!