Aug 28, 2007

Rabbis are pro cellphone jamming

A number of Rabbonim from England approached Rav Wosner to ask for a signed letter prohibiting the use of a cellphone in shul. They were looking to take it up a step, rather than just leave it as a recommendation against or just a bad concept. They wanted to make it assur.

During the discussion someone suggested that they put cellphone jammers in the shuls. The idea caught on and was brought before a number of other gedolim in order to obtain a consensus to have permission to place such devices in shuls. Rabbis Wosner, Shteinman and Lefkowitz signed the "kol kore" decree urging gabbaim in shuls around the world to install such jammers in their shuls to prevent the use of cellphones during services.

I think it is a great idea, as we are all aware of the disturbance caused by people talkign on cellphones during services. Even if they do not talk, someone inadvertently forgets to turn his off or on silent mode and it rings during services. Even if he does not answer it and turns it off then, it has made the disturbance.

I am not sure as to the legal ramifications. I know in Israel it is illegal to have such a device. Maybe a shul will be able to get special permission (through political connections) from the Defense Ministry to install such jammers.


  1. What about doctors, emergency workers and the like?

  2. good question. I guess praying better in shul should solve those problems and emergencies..:-)

    just joking. maybe because they carry beepers it is not such a problem... don't know

  3. what about emergencies for anyone? - why can't the phones be set to vibrate and that way no one is disturbed. I never have my phone off vibrate and I do not answer it in shule unless I walk out.

    what if a person is in a shule being mispalel for someone who is in the middle of surgery, and they are expecting a call any second with news?

    BAAAAAD idea! Better to teach discipline with the phone than eliminate it's use.

    and DO NOT tell me how "we got along for so long without it", yeah the same argument can be made for indoor plumbing and penicillin.


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