I downloaded a Shabbat Alert app for my iPad, because i needed an alarm that would shut off after a few minutes. It worked fine (except that my iPad was muted), and it seemed to be quite halachic. In fact, perhaps it even went above and beyond.

Before it let me do anything, it made me "sign" an agreement that i wouldn't use the app on Shabbat.

Is there any halachic basis for requiring an agreement like this?

  • Hm. I closed this quickly as a duplicate of mi.yodeya.com/q/10389, but then I noticed that that asks why specifically audiorecordings have such a notice and answers address audiorecordings specifically. So I guess this is a different question: I've reopened it. – msh210 Oct 30 '14 at 21:21
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    It's also different because that's simply a request, while this is actually requiring an agreement. – Scimonster Oct 30 '14 at 21:22
  • If I had to take a guess, I would say there is no obligation for the publisher to have written that, as they are not responsible for other people using their app on Shabbos. It's just one of those things that it can't hurt to add and it might help, so why not write it? – Salmononius2 Oct 31 '14 at 0:53

I'm the developer of this app and Salmononius2 is spot on. I never really considered it but I guess this could be an issue for non strictly observant users... Will try to add a 'Bli Neder' mention at some point Enjoy the app and Shabbat Shalom Jeremy

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    Welcome to Mi Yodeya, Jeremy, and thanks for your personal expert answer. – Scimonster Jul 3 '15 at 12:00
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    You are responsible for your animal not working on Shabbat, in certain circumstances, even if the animal is under the care and direction of a gentile at that time, and even if you do not benefit. That logic should NOT apply to an app since there is no commandment to let your apps rest on Shabbat. Perhaps such an agreement does help avoid lifnei iver (putting a stumbling block - leading/enabling someone to sin). – Yehuda W Jul 3 '15 at 14:39

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