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Inspired by this question:

If one receives a friend request on Facebook, especially from another Jew, is it permissible to reject them?

On the one hand, "חברים כל ישראל" - "All Jews are friends"; but on the other hand, it is non-beneficial to be socially connected to someone you don't know well.


This question is Purim Torah and is not intended to be taken completely seriously. See the Purim Torah policy.

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closed as too localized by Isaac Moses Mar 12 '12 at 5:12

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750+ views! Anyone know where this was shared? No Announcer badge, so whoever it was didn't use the special links that give one credit for sharing ('g+', 'f', 't' on the side of the question, and "link" under it). –  Isaac Moses Feb 28 '12 at 15:45
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@IsaacMoses It's appearing in an advert on other Stack Exchange sites - I for one was curious as to the Jewish slant on what looked like an otherwise simple question ;) –  Zhaph - Ben Duguid Feb 28 '12 at 16:59
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@IsaacMoses of all the questions that could have been put on outside ads :) –  Shmuel Brin Feb 28 '12 at 19:03
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@IsaacMoses This doesn't explain the previous 750+ views, but the fact that it now has over 1300 may be because it was posted on the SE blog today, along with a mention of our Purim Torah policy: blog.stackoverflow.com/2012/03/… –  HodofHod Mar 7 '12 at 2:46
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@HodofHod Indeed. It's an interesting podcast in general. The part about P"T is about 33:50 - 36:40. –  Isaac Moses Mar 7 '12 at 14:58
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5 Answers 5

Avos says:

יהושע בן פרחיה אומר עשה לך רב וקנה לך חבר והוי דן את כל האדם לכף זכות

Y'hoshua ben Prachya says: Make yourself much and buy yourself a friend; and be judging everyone toward the scalepan of merit.

"Buy yourself a friend" means that you should only be friends with someone on a social-networking site for which you pay a membership fee. In fact, since he says you should first "make yourself much", the membership must be expensive. Since Facebook does not (yet) have paid membership available, it is inappropriate to become Facebook friends with anyone.

You might think that you should therefore look down upon someone who tries to become Facebook friends with you; hence the end of the statement, "be judging everyone toward the scalepan of merit".

As always, consult your rabbi for practical halacha rather than relying on what you read on this site.

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Can you meet the requirement by joining a fraternity? –  Daniel ben Noach Feb 28 '12 at 6:26
    
@DanielbenNoach, I guess it would depend on whether there are dues and how much the dues come to. Again, as always, CYLOR. –  msh210 Feb 28 '12 at 15:49
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There's a famous concept that:

"כל ישראל ערבים זה לזה" - all Jews are 'crows' to one another.

The medrash makes a derasha: "just like crows can congregate with nothing more than their voices, so too, the proper way for Jews to attempt being reunited is through tefila and not through Facebook."

(This derasha is probably more well known for the problems it causes in terms of basar shenitalem min ha'ayin.)

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If you have friends (you are a "Chaver"), then you could friend him only if he has friends (if he is a Chaver). (For more information, see here)

To get friends, one would have to keep away from people who are not friends, as they may be impure (and the Gemara in Kiddushin says that when families fight, it is because one of them may be a Mamzer).

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Except on Chol Hamoed, because then הכתוב עשאן כולן חברים (Chagigah 26a/Niddah 34a). –  Alex Feb 28 '12 at 2:05
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up vote 49 down vote accepted

In Pirkei Avos (1:15), we find clear instructions regarding this matter:

הוי מקבל את כל האדם בספר פנים

One should accept all persons on Facebook.

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Yafeh!!! +100000 –  Double AA Feb 28 '12 at 3:52
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AMAZING!!!!!!!!! –  Hacham Gabriel Feb 28 '12 at 4:00
    
Really it is b'seiver panim (yafos). –  Adam Mosheh Feb 28 '12 at 5:17
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@Adam this is Purim Torah. I'm sure, with a little creativity Yafoth can be worked in. –  Seth J Feb 28 '12 at 14:26
    
AWESOME !!! Thanks ! –  Sandman4 Feb 28 '12 at 22:09
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The Mitzva on Purim is Ad D'Lo Yada, and therefore you should not accept him as you are not supposed to know him. As a true friend he will understand.

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