A twenty-five-year-old Hasidic programmer from Israel named Yaakov Swisa, has created a kosher version of Facebook for ultra-Orthodox Jews called Faceglat, which derives its name from the words "Facebook" and "glatt," meaning "highly kosher." You can think of Swisa as the Hasidic Mark Zuckerberg, but with only around 1.3 million Haredi, or ultra-Orthodox, Jews in existence, his world-domination plans may leave a lot to be desired.

The site allows users to engage in many of the same activities that they would on Facebook, but the one glaring difference is the segregation of men and women, like you would find at the synagogue. This is so that no "indecent pictures" of women can be viewed by men, and vice-versa. So a husband and wife wishing to communicate on Faceglat are out of luck. Swisa said, "Orthodox Jews need the internet at home and at work alike. My website allows them to browse freely, while offering them maximum security. It also reassures parents who worry about their children going on pages that everybody can consult."

On the homepage, men sign up by clicking on the arrow on the right of the screen, while women click on the arrow on the left. There is a filter that deletes inappropriate words, and users who post pictures deemed indecent are banned from the site. Faceglat currently has over 2,000 users and counting, with about 100 new accounts created each week. For now, the website is only available in Hebrew and English, but will soon be translated into French and Russian. (Fifteen percent of the users are from Russia.) I'm not sure if Matisyahu is a member, but if he is, he must have an avalanche of friend requests.

Commentarium (2 Comments)

Sep 12 11 - 8:02pm
julian.

I feel oddly obligated to make one now.