The Covid-19 pandemic has ushered in new behaviors and digital practices. This study explores how digital media has advanced safer behavior among ultra-Orthodox Israeli adults during the pandemic in authoritarian societies. We explored the level of adherence to government-issued health guidelines during the Covid-19 pandemic by conducting a public opinion survey among a representative sample of ultra-Orthodox Israeli adults (N = 500) during the second Covid-19 wave (Autumn 2020). The results show that digital media usage significantly contributes to higher levels of adherence to health guidelines. This offers new insight into the field of new media research, revealing the significant role of digital media in promoting safer behavior in times of emergency in authoritarian communities, possibly because it bypasses Internet censorship and disinformation. It also emphasizes the need for adapting risk communication to the media habits and cultural beliefs of different social groups, in turn contributing to well-being and life itself.
- digital media
- health guidelines
- Ultra-Orthodox (Haredi) Jews
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Sociology and Political Science