Thursday, January 05, 2006

The Orthodoxy Test #19: The Internet

The Internet is

a) a terrible destructive force and assur
b) really bad, but ok for parnassa
c) not great, but ok in moderation
d) perfectly fine
e) a great invention that increased worldwide Torah availability
f) Leave this question out of my results

Once again, the problem with many of these options is that they assume that the internet is a monolithic entity, when in fact it is merely a medium. Proposing, for example, that the internet is "assur" ((a)) is like proposing that books are "assur." Some (the good ones) are, and some aren't. The fact that some books are halachically undesirable does not negate the potential value - and permissibility - of the medium. Basically, my reaction is the same as it was to #18 - the one about television and movies (which see). I choose (d). The internet is as "perfectly fine" as many, many other things most of us deal with on a regular basis; as always, the important question is how one uses it.

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