The Canada-based Ashley Madison website hooks up married people for no-strings-attached sex.
After it announced it was "coming in November" to Singapore, a public outcry ensued and the Media Development Authority (MDA) decided to block the site.
Every act of adultery is presumably engaged in out of the free wills of both parties. In contrast, every act of marrying, whatever the words of the marriage vow uttered, is the free will forming of a partnership for life between a man and a woman which requires both parties to stay faithful to each other in two senses. The first is sexual and the other emotional.
In fact, violating your spouse's expectations of emotional fidelity can be even more devastating than sexual infidelity. This is why, in one sense, hooking up for no-strings-attached sex of the Ashley Madison variety, while adulterous, may be considered less of an infraction on the marital vow than a long-drawn affair between two colleagues or friends.
In the latter case, the married person crosses the line to share more of his or her struggles, fears and joys with the lover, rather than the spouse. This sharing of the inner self which speaks to an emotional oneness of the kind meant only for the spouse is the essence of emotional infidelity, which can be described as an impermissible intimacy of which sex is merely the physical expression.
The uproar over Ashley Madison has focused too much on sexual fidelity whereas emotional fidelity is arguably even more significant. The wronged spouse suffers injury precisely because of that betrayal of the soul connection with his or her spouse, of which the sex act is an expression.
In fact, adultery involves not just two people, but a third or even a fourth, if both are married.
These parties suffer injury because of that betrayal of the heart but they are never compensated because there is no law here for adultery-based claims by which the injured spouse may sue the third party for compensation.