Roshei Yeshiva Update BMG’s Smartphone Policy Following Petirah Of Rav Mattisyahu Zt”l

The roshei yeshiva of Bais Medrash Govoha have issued new takanos regarding smartphones in the yeshiva, with the new regulations coming in the wake of the petirah of the mashgiach Rav Mattisyahu Salomon zt”l.

Under the new takanos, no smartphones – including those that don’t look like smartphones – are allowed anywhere on BMG’s premises, including anywhere inside its buildings, parking lots, dorms, etc.

To drive home the point, the roshei yeshiva say that one who violates these updated takanos loses their zechus as a talmid or avreich in the yeshiva, as well as their right to collect a kollel check.

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  1. Old Lakewood: there is no problem owning a smartphone and using it outside the hallowed premises of the Yeshiva. The rules are only to protect the elite of society who spend their whole days learning in the holy halls of the actual Yeshiva. If you use a smartphone to make money, you are protected from all evil by donating a large part of what you make to the Yeshiva.

  2. Many of the people who donate to BMG, specifically donate because of what the Yeshiva stands for and the kedushas hayeshiva. I consider it a zechus, and yes, it is a zechus to help support the yeshiva. I have a smartphone. I realize and understand that the Avreichim are on a higher madreiga than me

  3. When I was learned in BMG a number of years ago, R’Malkiel gave a shmuz at the beginning of the zman and mentioned smartphones.
    “Yes, smartphones are convenient, but when one is on it, it’s like going on a trip to Australia. When he’s done with the smartphone, it’s like he came back from the trip. Even if he only looks at it bein hasedarim, it’s like he went to Australia for bein hasedarim. You can’t have true ameilus Hatorah from such a thing.”
    What I understood from this shmuz was that R’Malkiel understood the conveniences of having a smartphone but that it’s not for yungerleit who are completely immersed in Torah. If a baal habus can live without it, Kol Hakavod.

  4. Let me clarify the rule as stated above applies to offices and parking lots of Yeshiva not just the Bais Medrash. It appears that the point is not merely to stop distractions in Bais Medrash but rather to ban completely (and thereby shame those that need a smartphone to give it up). Will the rules of no smartphones in offices or parking lots be enforced on guests who come to visit the Yeshiva and tomchei Torah who come to support the Yeshiva or is it limited to those enrolled in the Yeshiva.

  5. It’s a zechus to donate to the Yeshiva and it is beautiful to keep a Bais Medrash reyn but people who need smartphones and use it with filters etc shouldn’t be madd to feel like rejected oysvorfufs. There are those that shrai against smartphones and whattsapp and are only all to eager to run a Charity campaign on Whatsapp and social media.. Banning bala Batim or others with smartphones from the premises of Yeshiva makes them feel like drek unless the rules are clearly stated as not geared towards them.

    • They aren’t referring to visitors. Whenever BMG puts out a takana like this, it’s usually for the talmidim of the yeshiva unless specified otherwise. Of course, it goes without saying that Bal Habatim who are visiting yeshiva know not to take it out unless absolutely necessary. I don’t think that’s part of the takana but it’s self understood.


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