Is booing, expressing disapproval or dislike of the performance, and similar gestures, considered shaming someone in public, or does it “come with the territory”?

  • 3
    I can't imagine anyone saying this is permmisble. The main reason being that Booing and heckling is not constructive criticism rather done just to humiliate the performer
    – sam
    Sep 4 '19 at 3:13
  • 1
    I would imagine that if "he asking for it" and the show's popularity depends on audience "participation" then it would be OK, but otherwise, it shouldn't be. Can't think of where to look up a source for this. (Same if he "planted" somebody in the audience to heckle him, that it would be OK as long as he remained within the boundaries he was asked to.) Sep 4 '19 at 7:28
  • Is staring blankly at someone telling you a joke also prohibited? Are we obligated to lie to positively reinforce bad material lest we embarrass the designer? How will they ever learn? Why is this different from other constructive criticism?
    – Double AA
    Sep 9 '19 at 11:51

Rambam, Hilchos Chovel U'Mazik 3:7:

אַף עַל פִּי שֶׁהַמְבַיֵּשׁ שְׁאָר הָעָם בִּדְבָרִים פָּטוּר מִן הַתַּשְׁלוּמִין עָוֹן גָּדוֹל הוּא. וְאֵינוֹ מְחָרֵף וּמְגַדֵּף לָעָם אֶלָּא רָשָׁע שׁוֹטֶה. וְאָמְרוּ חֲכָמִים הָרִאשׁוֹנִים שֶׁכָּל הַמַּלְבִּין פְּנֵי אָדָם כָּשֵׁר מִיִּשְׂרָאֵל בִּדְבָרִים אֵין לוֹ חֵלֶק לָעוֹלָם הַבָּא:

Although a person who verbally insults people is exempt from paying compensation, it is a grave sin. Only an evil fool reviles and abuses people. The ancient sages declared: "Anyone who puts a worthy Jew to shame in public has no share in the world to come."

  • Too general. Heckling, booing and shouting down are not technically insults. Sep 4 '19 at 20:43
  • 1
    @MauriceMizrahi Merriam-Webster merriam-webster.com/dictionary/heckle and dictionary.com dictionary.com/browse/heckle don't agree
    – alicht
    Sep 4 '19 at 20:55
  • This just says shaming someone is a sin. The question was if that case is included.
    – Double AA
    Sep 4 '19 at 21:57
  • 1
    The online psak service the OP consulted broadly agreed with this answer dinonline.org/2019/09/04/…
    – Josh K
    Sep 4 '19 at 23:58
  • The Rambam said "verbally insult". This means words are used. General expressions of disrespect that do not involve words are not covered. They may also be wrong, but you can't infer that from this Rambam. Also, booing someone does not necessarily "put him to shame". Sep 5 '19 at 0:30

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