Ban the CR-No Mechitza!

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    I have just had a disturbing realization. All boys know that it is completely assur to converse with a davar acher (a g..l), or even to acknowledge their presence. Any conversations with the aforementioned species would be an immediate cause for expulsion from any upstanding yeshiva. Likewise, no girl is ever allowed to speak to the opposite gender.

    So how is it, that on these very pages, boys and girls are allowed to mingle freely, and converse with whomever they please? How can YWN condone such outrageous, inappropriate behavior?

    I therefore propose the following solution:

    YWN should create a virtual mechitza in the CR, and not allow the separate species to mingle, thus ensuring the moral and spiritual integrity of the coffee room.

    The Parisian

    Absolutely hilarious.


    I understand (or rather: I hope) the OP was speaking in jest, but in honour of the #KTCRIM I will respond in seriousness to promote discussion.

    There is a massive distinction between “mingling freely and conversing with whomever they please” and posting on the Coffee Room. Mingling and conversing are the first steps to familiarity, loosening boundaries and lack of reserve, and therefore prohibited between unrelated singles. Besides for the fact that anything public is automatically less intimate, and therefore less likely to cause any awakening of improper feelings or improper behavior, there is a second difference which makes the Coffee Room unique.

    A normal conversation is merely a platform of communication between the participants. The mere fact that you are conversing creates a connection, and at least for the duration of the conversation, you are equals, you are friends, and there is a [albeit weak] emotional bond. You can be talking about nothing of importance, but it makes no difference. You can instantly strike up a connection with someone by discussing the price of milk in a grocery queue; even someone you have never met. (Obviously, something digitalised has less of that, due to lack of eye contact, body language and other factors that are credited to the visual aspect of the conversation)

    ?? ?? ???? on the Coffee Room. The fact that it isn’t instant, and the fact that everything is carefully moderated means that you aren’t really having a conversation with another person, you are just having a conversation about something. Pretty much anything personalized about the conversation is removed; the entire conversation is only what is said – not anything more. The conversation has become a discussion limited to the topic of discussion rather than a springboard for familiarity.

    Therefore, by definition, there is no “mingling” happening, nor any casual conversation. Everything is simply WYSIWYG.


    We are often not aware of the other person’s gender. Even in cases where we think we know, we may not know. Oomis could be a 25 year old Arab man living in South Dakota. Joseph could be a Liberal Democrat 95 year old Canadian entrepreneur with a pet Galapagos Giant Tortoise. Popa-bar-abba–well, popa could be anything.


    I don’t know, between my computer/phone and yours, I think there are plenty Mechitzos…




    Wait. You’re English?


    LoIbud- the questions are

    1) does rebyidd think Joseph is British?

    2) did rebyidd mean to capitalize the L?



    1 – Huh?

    2 – Good chap there, but I wasn’t only basing my assumption on that. I was basing it on a far vaguer premise. I’m pretty confident about this though.


    I was referring to the person Joseph might be, not myself.


    On the subject of mechitzos, I’m surprised this issue was given such short shrift. It is a serious problem, and thankfully the solution is already at hand. The Topics column at the bottom of the page, you know, the one splitting all the threads into ‘Decaffineated Coffee’ or ‘Controversial’, should be used. A CR Master committee, staffed by veterans (Not including newbys such as myself, but true veterans) and led by PAA and PBA in a fractious duumvirate (Yep, that’s a word) would decide which topics were to be reserved for males and which for female. These divisions would, in the true spirit of the CR, be as contentious as possible and be carried out in as chauvinistic/liberal/dramatic (delete as necessary) a manner as possible. And I’m claiming ‘Controversial’ for the males.



    I was aware of that. It wasn’t the actual message, rather the style and choice of words that led to my assumption. Feel free to confirm, deny or ignore.

    Happy Go Lucky!!

    <<Written in Male Ink>>

    So that no females would come to read my post

    <<Resume Regular Ink>>


    I agree their should be machitzos. Its very asur for opposite genders to talk. Besides for just being assur its disturbing for our neshamos and for ourselve even in the gashmius world. We need to protect ourselves and not talk to the other gender. Hashem made it for a reason and He did it for a good reason because people should protect themselves from znius. Like how people said earlier everyone can be anything and anywhere is the ONLY problem that we have when coming to making machitzos. It could be that im really a boy or a girl just that i put up a girls name you cant tell. But Hashem is watching us so we should be careful of what we say and try not talking to the opposite gender.


    I’m not talking to Princess Leeba, because I am obviously male. So I’ll direct the comment to my fellow males floating around, and if anybody wants, they can tell her she’s free to listen in.

    Besides for just being assur its disturbing for our neshamos

    I don’t see two things there. Its disturbing to our neshamos only because it is assur. Just saying.

    and for ourselve even in the gashmius world

    Don’t know what she’s talking about.

    because people should protect themselves from znius

    That’s quite funny actually. I thought she wrote tznius, then I realized she meant znus. Great typo!

    It could be that im really a boy or a girl just that i put up a girls name you cant tell.

    Er… It’s blatantly obvious, actually.


    “no girl is ever allowed to speak to the opposite gender”

    Not true, a single girl is permitted to speak to a single boy to determine whether or not they might be a shidduch.

    There is a woman in my community who got a severe dressing down while she was in her charedi high school because she was talking to a boy. She later married him.


    Men and women don’t just speak differently, they type differently as well. Yes, we can tell.


    I vote for some form of mechitza.


    Give me an example of a bad result of the current CR arrangement before I decide.


    I don’t think you should have used “davar acher,” even in jest.


    Yekke2: “anything public is automatically less intimate”

    –not necessarily. I have seen posts on here between men and women that seem like banter, kalus rosh, etc. if the conversation was in real life, it would be assur.

    “you aren’t really having a conversation with another person, you are just having a conversation about something”

    — Right now, I think I’m addressing you pretty directly (although it might take you a while to respond). Especially when posters are on here for a few years, they can build a decent relationship thru commenting back and forth, and get to know each others’ style and personality.

    I don’t see how a CR comment thread can’t induce improper feelings. If comments about all sorts of topics can make one happy or get angry, what stops them from giving one hirhurim?


    Because we don’t see people, we see black and white letters.


    exactly. the gemara itself says hirhurim are so powerful because they can happen even without someone right in front of you. that’s why there are so many harchakos to arayos.


    Just for the record, my post was a total joke. I was bored one night, and decided to write this piece. I was flabbergasted to find people taking this cause seriously. Its just an online forum for heaven’s sakes, how can there possibly be an issue with mixing genders?

    However, the responses did get me thinking. Can there actually be a real a problem? At first glance, it doesn’t seem so, for all the reasons yekke2 pointed out. In terms of the issue of inappropriate conversations, I daresay the mods have got that aspect under control. So the issue that’s left is the innocent conversations that involve people of the opposite genders. I remain HIGHLY skeptical that there can actually be a problem.

    But practically, even if there would be real issue, what can YWN do about this? They have no way of knowing who is a boy and who is a girl in order to separate them?

    Even if YWN would force people’s usernames to be non-denominational, people’s posts can still easily reveal their gender. Even though, as rebyidd23 said, any poster can be anyone, who they actually are makes little difference, its who you think they are that counts.

    So the bottom line? As far as I’m concerned, there’s ABSOLUTELY no problem. To those folks who maintain there is a problem, YW cant do much about it, so if you think its truly affecting your yiras shamayim, STOP USING THE COFFEE ROOM!

    ED IT OR

    Bit of a stupid thread this as 99% of the posters on here are Joseph.

    I. M. Shluffin

    How about we let girls stay on the CR until they’re 3 years old? Or 7 years old, depending on their family minhag? That should satisfy half the population here.

    Should I leave now?


    You can stay till you’re seven.


    If comments about all sorts of topics can make one happy or get angry, what stops them from giving one hirhurim?

    Those are emotional reactions.

    Hirhurim are not an emotional reaction.

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