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Feb 19, 2013

Charging your iphone is theft in the Mir Yeshiva

There has been a lot of halachic discussion, or declaration perhaps, around the issue of using iPhones and other smartphones with Internet access. Is the bearer of an iPhone kosher to witness a wedding?

Another perspective of the halachic issue surrounding the usage of an iPhone was brought to the public realm in the Mir Yeshiva.

Considering that iPhones are forbidden to be used, as well as laptops that are not blocked from access to the Internet, someone asked, and anonymously publicized, the rosh yeshiva if students are allowed to plug in and charge such devices using the yeshiva electricity. The rosh yeshiva said no, such devices cannot be plugged in to yeshiva electricity. So would it be considered theft if someone did so anyway? the rosh yeshiva said it would be theft.
(source: Kikar)

The notice publicizing this discussion was hung anonymously in the yeshiva. And it was not just a simple handwritten or typed sign - it was a fancily designed notice:

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  1. Well, if the Yeshiva doesn't allow it, I think that by definition means that it is theft. There was no need to ask the second question.

  2. In general, charging your phone *ANYWHERE* without permission may be theft.

    However, I wonder what the halacha is if the amount of electricity used is less than a prutah?

  3. I wondered that too. even if, you wouldnt be allowed to do it, but if you did you wouldnt owe anything...

    I wonder how long you have to leave a phone plugged in for it to hit a pruta..

  4. Electricity costs about 10 cents per kilowatt hour. An iPhone charger uses about 5 watts, so it would need 200 hours to reach a kilowatt hour. A prutah is about a cent, so 20 hours of charging would be worth a prutah. Very rough numbers...

  5. http://www.din.org.il/2011/07/28/%D7%94%D7%98%D7%A2%D7%A0%D7%AA-%D7%9E%D7%97%D7%A9%D7%91-%D7%90%D7%95-%D7%A4%D7%9C%D7%90%D7%A4%D7%95%D7%9F-%D7%91%D7%A9%D7%A7%D7%A2-%D7%97%D7%A9%D7%9E%D7%9C-%D7%A9%D7%9C-%D7%91%D7%99%D7%AA-%D7%9B%D7%A0/


  6. Sorry

    1. i suppose that is an admission of sorts that people at the Mir have these sorts of things with them while at the Mir.....


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