Dec 21, 2009

Haredi internet sites shut down...for now

Since the ban on haredi websites, a number of leading sites have shut their portals. They claim to have done so despite great financial loss, simply to adhere to the words of the gedolim.

Very nice of them.

Unfortunately (for them and the gedolim), the Internet is here to stay. It is not like the fight against television back in the day, which was largely successful in much of the heimishe community. Television was purely entertainment. Even though some programs can be described as educational, but they are far overwhelmed by the entertainment factor of most television. Entertainment can be put aside with the claim that it is inappropriate for various reasons - find different entertainment.

Internet is far more than entertainment. Businesses run on internet. Banks. Bills are paid. Necessary information can be located far easier and quicker on the internet than in libraries (that are assur to go to) or by calling companies or going down to offices. the Internet is functional, along withthe entertainment factor.

The Internet is not going away - just the opposite, as it will encompass more and more of our lives.

So the few internet sites that shut down - sorry to see you go. I actually enjoyed some of them. Give it a few weeks, maybe a couple of months, plenty more will open to fill the void these created. That is if these specific ones don't reopen on their own (claiming they have received a hetter and exception).

the question is why other haredi sites did not shut down. You know, the sites that profess to tell us to listen to the gedolim - to the exact word, and only specific ones. Sites such as Hamodia's site, Yated Neeman's site, Yeshiva World and others similar.

there are far more haredi sites that remain open than the 3 or 4 that shut down.

they claim exception, saying there is nothing wrong with their sites, and the ban is only on forums. But the statement of the ban says it is on all sites, even the ones who claim to not have such problems.

Why do they not listen?

It doesn't really bother me, because I think the ban is silly and was instigated for personal, vengeful reasons - somebody must have gotten hurt by something and encouraged the ban claiming rampant Lashon ha'Ra. I think the haredi sites in general do a good job and there is a place for them. They can be a good voice for the haredi community, along with a quick and effective way of disseminating information to, and about, the community. I actually commend those that stayed open,, while also commending those with the integrity to claim adherence to the words of the gedolim and when push comes to shove they actually listened.

The fact that they are the extreme minority just proves my long standing opinion that everybody does what is good for them, no matter what the gedolim say. if the gedolim back me, then I am great. If they don't then I am the exception to their words. Either it works out well with my beliefs, or I make excuses. Either way, I do what i want. Listening to the gedolim is secondary.


  1. I was at the post office yesterday. Someone was arguing with the clerk because she was not able to help them. Someone on the phone gave them a reference number that was invalid. They told her to check it herself.

    She responded that it was a Haredi branch and they didn't have internet. The person had to leave get whatever the needed and returned before the computers shut down or they were out of luck.

  2. Rafi
    The ban specified loshon hora. As everybody knows, sites like Yated Neeman, Yeshiva World etc... do not spread loshon hora...
    Even if the ban is universal,since there is a reason to it, so "botel hataam etc."

  3. ehwhy - I didnt understand. The post office branch cant have internet access because it is haredi or the customer couldnt have internet access?

    Bohr - the ban specifically said that even sites that are not full of LH should be stopped as a way of eradicating it all.

    and anyway there is as much LH in those sites as in any other. they have comments that are pretty nasty. they have forums. they have articles that defame (in th way they write them) anyone they dont like and doesnt agree with their particular gadol...

  4. The post office was not able to double check information that a customer obtained on the internet.

  5. it makes absolutely no sense that the PO should not be allowed to have the services it requires to provide efficient service.

  6. It's worth taking a few minutes to look at

    The writer says the 'gedolim' ban on internet sites was directly connected to the exposure of the Tropper scandal. The 'gedolim' initiated the ban (which otherwise didn't make sense, cos internet's already banned) in order to shut the mouths of those who were exposing the alleged sexual misdemeanors of Rabbi Tropper - who has wall-to-wall haskamas from said 'gedolim'.

  7. hard to believe they did all that just just for avoiding talk about 1 scandal... but maybe

  8. Whoah - just followed the link - and more links - and more links -
    This story stinks!

    I had been upset about websites closing down because it's a pointless move; but this - this is way worse than anything I've had the displeasure to read in a long time.


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