Survey Teaser: HonestReporting’s Approach of Reaching Youth ‘Where They Are’ Improves Perceptions About Israel

Reprinted from Honest Reporting.


As HonestReporting has extensively detailed (see, for example, here and here), antisemitism continues to flourish at US universities. Indeed, a study released this week found that more than 65 percent of “openly Jewish” college students have at some point felt unsafe on campus, which prompted 50% to at least once conceal their identity.

According to the study conducted by the Cohen Research Group in conjunction with The Louis D. Brandeis Center for Human Rights Under Law, more than 50% of Jewish students surveyed said they avoid expressing their views on Israel. A shocking 70% had personally experienced, or knew of, anti-Jewish attacks on campus in the past 120 days.

HonestReporting can now reveal that it has found a powerful method to turn this antisemitic tide.

During the Hamas-initiated conflict last May, we implemented a style of reaching out to people that is proving effective: by emphasizing Israel’s concern for human rights; making stark the harmful impact of terror groups on ordinary Israelis and Palestinians; and being particularly sensitive to race-related politics as well as theories like “intersectionality” that permeate the ideology of progressive influencers.

As shown by an exclusive poll conducted by the Technometrica market research firm, our approach works.

First, our survey quantified the number of people who hold pro-Israel and anti-Israel positions, as well as how many don’t have an outspoken opinion on the Arab-Israeli conflict. The research subsequently proved that our unique communication style and framing of issues significantly improved — particularly among young adults, university students and progressives — attitudes towards the Jewish state and its citizens,

In fact, after showing individuals a brief HonestReporting-produced video explaining May’s conflict, one-third of respondents (Americans aged 18-44) said they then felt more supportive of Israel. This includes the critically important 18-24 cohort, in which there was a 32 percent rise in positive sentiment.

“For many supporters of Israel, this has seemed a confusing and hopeless time,” HonestReporting CEO Daniel Pomerantz explained. “But, in truth, we really can communicate effectively and we really can succeed. This requires a whole new approach, vocabulary and framing of issues in order to reach people ‘where they are,’” he added.

“We now have the scientific data to verify that our approach works and to help us further refine it over time,” said Pomerantz. “All of us at HonestReporting are excited to share our data and the details of our approach with you in the coming weeks.”

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