On December 7, Israeli President Isaac Herzog and Meta (formerly Facebook) in Israel launched the “Think Good” campaign to change online discourse for the better.

This one-of-a-kind campaign will reveal the most vulgar and hurtful messages received by public figures, illustrating how words can hurt even celebrities and leaders with hundreds of thousands of followers.

Some of the participants will specifically address young audiences, as part of the campaign’s collaboration with youth website Frogi, in which young stars will share with other youth tips to stay safe online.

The campaign was born out of a concern about the level of cyberbullying and hurtful, threatening posts on social media.

Israeli President Isaac Herzog posted this message: “Before you write anything, think well.” Photo courtesy of Government Press Office

“I am disturbed by discourse on social media. People have become too ‘keyboard-happy,’ and red lines are constantly being crossed on social networks,” Herzog said.

“I have set myself the central mission of moderating the hurtful discourse and bullying online, which harm us as individuals and as a society on a daily basis,” he added.

“I am glad to lead this very important project, ‘Think Good,’ which is raising public awareness about the power of words online and encourages a more inclusive discourse on social media, and in particular encourages us to stop and think before hitting ‘enter.’ We must start thinking good and writing good.”

In Hebrew, the phrase “think good” also means “think well” or “think carefully.”

Adi Soffer-Teeni, country director for Meta in Israel, said the Think Good campaign “will put a spotlight on the most difficult moments on social networks in order to spark a discussion and make a clear statement against a phenomenon that has no place on our platforms.”

Soffer-Teeni thanked everyone “who agreed to bravely reveal the ugliest words that people have written to them, in order to lead such an important initiative against bullying, harmful content, and violent language online.”

Among those joining the campaign are pop star Anna Zak (with 1.4 million followers), Prime Minister Naftali Bennett (513,000 followers on Facebook, 126k on Instagram), Foreign Minister Yair Lapid (505k on Facebook, 121k on Instagram), Interior Minister Ayelet Shaked (227k on Facebook, 62,000k on Instagram), judoka Peter Paltchik (56k) and journalist Mohammad Magadli (24k).