Take the 2-minute tour ×
Mi Yodeya is a question and answer site for those who base their lives on Jewish law and tradition and anyone interested in learning more. It's 100% free, no registration required.

Basically:

Can you leave your computer with video chat on (to another person) on over shabbos? And what if there's also audio?

For example a relative in the hospital, relatives that in a far away country, or just on in general.

This is all under the assumption that you will not touch the computer or camera.

share|improve this question
add comment

2 Answers

This seems that it would be asur (Yalkut Yosef Kitzur S"A 318:51-53). A paraphrase:

יש ללמד לא להכניס לתוך סרט וידיאו לפני שבת עבור המכשיר לעבודה על ידי קוצב זמן.‏

"It is [proper] to teach to not put a movie into a vcr before shabbat and for the device to work by a timer."

share|improve this answer
1  
For those of us who do not have that source, can you give a quick summary of what it says and maybe some text? –  Naftali Dec 12 '11 at 16:34
    
@Seth J thank you for the correction, I think it is more understandable. –  Hacham Gabriel Dec 12 '11 at 17:17
    
Glad to help. I just made another tweak, but it's one that I should have seen before (there was an extra 'to' in the sentence). –  Seth J Dec 12 '11 at 17:23
    
Does this, perhaps, have to do with the fact that the VCR is turning on on Shabas? –  msh210 Dec 12 '11 at 17:43
    
Yes, that is one reason, however in the Rav writes (Y"Y KS"A 318:37) there is an additional reason of "zilzul beshabbat kodesh." –  Hacham Gabriel Dec 12 '11 at 18:05
show 2 more comments

You may want to view these other discussions:

Why do music tapes and CDs warn about playing on Shabbos?

Am I allowed to view a Kotel Cam on Shabbos?

In terms of an answer: It seems to me that this would be the same as viewing television on Shabbat, being not in the spirit of Shabbat, even when left on. However, I wonder if it falls under medical necessity in terms of hooking up to someone in the hospital. I would extend the question further to: is it okay to video chat with a Doctor on shabbat, in the event of an emergency. Does this break fewer laws than answering the phone, if the entire computer and video chat are connected before Shabbat?

share|improve this answer
    
I strongly suspect that being video/audiotaped on Shabbat, on purpose, is a bigger deal than watching TV on Shabbat. –  Isaac Moses Dec 12 '11 at 18:06
    
I would expect the same considerations that inform the TV question to factor in, but there are (at least) two key differences. First, you're being recorded (unlike TV), which suggests more stringency. Second, it's interactive, which -- in a case of medical necessity -- could be more lenient. (How it compares to the phone, though, I don't know.) –  Monica Cellio Dec 12 '11 at 18:46
add comment

Your Answer

 
discard

By posting your answer, you agree to the privacy policy and terms of service.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.