Searching for Tzedakah: What Google Reveals about America's Interest in Jewish Charity
By Ira Kaminow
Tzedakah, Inc., September 20, 2010
The internet offers an unprecedented opportunity for donors to learn about Jewish charity and Jewish charities. Widespread use of the internet to research tzedakah would likely shift resources to more
effective Jewish charities and provide greater incentive for Jewish charities to deliver needed services effectively. The research in this report, based on Google search volume data, is discouraging. It finds that there is relatively little interest in using the internet to raise the quality of tzedakah. For example, the volume of searches on “tzedakah” and related query terms is low and declining rapidly relative to searches on other mitzvot and relative to searches on general charity terms. The research also finds that interest in tzedakah around traditional Jewish seasons for giving is swamped by the volume
of searches in December as interest in tax avoidance soars.
The low level of tzedakah internet searches may reflect a broader disinterest in the quality of tzedakah. And such disinterest would permit many Jewish charities to avoid transparency which further discourages donors from looking for it.
Coverage: United States
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Kaminow, Ira. Searching for Tzedakah: What Google Reveals about America's Interest in Jewish Charity . Tzedakah, Inc.. 20 September 2010: http://www.bjpa.org/Publications/details.cfm?PublicationID=6134
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