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Problems with Snapchat & Social Media


Rabbi Ari Shvat

Iyyar 9, 5783
Hello rav, I have an app called "snapchat" that you may have heard of. I've wanted to delete it for a while as it wastes by time but more importantly exposed me to inappropriate things. However it is the main way that my friends make plans that feel that I may be left out if I don't have snapchat. There are no filters that I could turn on on snapchat. What do you recommend I do, Thanks so much
Shalom! Firstly, I give you great credit for your desire to grow spiritually, and being careful regarding inappropriate issues which are one of the greatest challenges of our generation, and shows (and strengthens!) both strong character and fortitude! Free-will is based upon the idea that in life we must constantly choose between good and bad, but today, it's between super-good (the web is great for learning Torah, Q's and A's, etc.) and super-bad! If it's important for you not to leave that app, he two suggestions that I can think of are: 1. If you have a sister who can regularly check that app for you and update you, for girls don't have such a problem with lewd pictures and the like, and also she won't waste so much time on your friends! 2. If that's not possible, use a small phone (and surely not a large computer screen), and hold the phone far away, and that way you can basically and generally "peruse" or skim the small content without "looking" at problematic pictures or reading wrong material, and accordingly skip that which is inappropriate, and read that which you need to know regarding your friends. This takes a lot of self-discipline, which is one of the keys to life which the Torah wants us to develop, but we can do it! BTW, these social apps are also very problematic, not just regarding pornography, but also regarding Lashon HaRa (embarrassing or hurting people, etc.). Also, in general, it's good to strive to have friends who are a positive influence, and participate in more constructive and idealistic activities, and inevitably the issue will be that much less problematic. All the best!
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