Wait, So The iPhone's Browser Can Access The Sun's Page 3... But If Another App Does, It's Obscene?

from the please-explain dept

Trent Reznor already did a wonderful job explaining Apple's hypocrisy in rejecting the NIN iPhone app because you could stream some content from The Downward Spiral, which Apple found objectionable... even though you could buy the same music via the iTunes store. However, reader Yakko Warner points us to a similar case as well. Apparently, Apple has rejected an app that pulls in newspaper content from many newspapers because some of that content includes the famous (or infamous) "Page 3" from The Sun, in the UK, which is normally filled with images of topless women. But, of course, anyone with an iPhone could just as easily use the web browser to surf right over to the website for Page 3 and see the exact same photos. So why is it suddenly "objectionable" when the very same functionality comes in a separate app?


Reader Comments (rss)

(Flattened / Threaded)

  1.  
    identicon
    Weird Harold's former #5 fan, May 8th, 2009 @ 10:04am

    Must. Not. Click. Link.

    (until I get home, anyway)

     

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  2.  
    identicon
    A Dan, May 8th, 2009 @ 10:11am

    Re:

    I'm not going to click the link to see, but should it be marked NSFW somehow? I'm prone to just clicking things sometimes without reading all the nearby text, since I like to see source articles.

     

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  3.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, May 8th, 2009 @ 10:12am

    Actually, Trent's example is a good one, but the latter is not.

    In Trent's example, iPhone apps and iTunes both come from Apple. Why would Apple block the content from on Apple source when it is available from another Apple source.

    In the latter example, the iPhone app is blocked, but internet content available from any device with a web browser is not.

    The point that iPhone is arbitrary in their content filter isn't lost on me. Just that only one of the two examples is good in demonstrating the argument.

     

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  4.  
    identicon
    Owen, May 8th, 2009 @ 10:14am

    It's about controlling your competition.
    So, I guess Apple is the new Microsoft, I always wondered how long it take...

     

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  5.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, May 8th, 2009 @ 10:46am

    This is always going to be a problem when you're dealing with closed systems. Apple cannot just open up the app store to anyone that wants to post apps, because people would post malicious apps. Now, if the user had full control over their phone this wouldn't be a problem because they could fix the problem themselves. But Apple (or really any phone except for I assume the G1) doesn't give the user enough control to fix problems like that unless the hack the phone.

    I'm not completely unsympathetic to Apple though on this. Do we want phones to turn into computers where you need to install anti-virus software and popup blockers and have to reinstall every few months? Some people may want that freedom (and they'll be smart enough not to install the FRE3 pr00n! app), but I suspect they'll migrate to the G1 anyhow.

     

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  6.  
    identicon
    Ima Fish, May 8th, 2009 @ 10:48am

    So who was the moron at Apple who decided to follow Wal-Mart's lead in protecting the world from naughtiness?!

     

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  7.  
    identicon
    Chronno S. Trigger, May 8th, 2009 @ 10:49am

    Re: Re:

    A phrase like "which is normally filled with images of topless women" doesn't qualify?

    I got to ask, Apple is so worried about this on the iPhone, do they care that much about all the other Apple PCs? Do they block offensive content threw the Safari browser?

     

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  8.  
    identicon
    Ima Fish, May 8th, 2009 @ 10:50am

    Re:

    "I always wondered how long it take..."

    I knew exactly how long it would take. Immediately after it obtained a dominate position in a viable market.

     

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  9.  
    identicon
    :Lobo Santo, May 8th, 2009 @ 10:54am

    Re: Re:

    That link's not even objectionable. The only people where you work which would object are the "moo cows" with that 'skinny bitches don't deserve to live' attitude and the "self-righteous stuck-up catholic bitches" who believe that any fun involving people must be wrong (though they never complain about machine-on-machine sex!)
    If you want porn, go find porn. Page3 is not porn.

     

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  10.  
    identicon
    Chuck Norris' Enemy (deceased), May 8th, 2009 @ 11:07am

    Re:

    Why would Apple block the content from on[e] Apple source when it is available from another Apple source[?]

    Money?

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  11.  
    icon
    ChurchHatesTucker (profile), May 8th, 2009 @ 11:09am

    Blah Blah Blah

    Thanks for the link to Page3. It's now a 'web app' on my iPhone.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  12.  
    icon
    Pangolin (profile), May 8th, 2009 @ 11:11am

    Re:

    Actually this one does make sense. Block a "free" version of the song so you can SELL a version. NIN block makes sense for Apple but not for the reason they gave.

    Blocking page3 is silly.

     

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  13.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, May 8th, 2009 @ 11:14am

    Money?

    Well of course, money. :) But they can't say money, now can they?

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  14.  
    icon
    Troy A. Wilson Sr. (profile), May 8th, 2009 @ 11:16am

    Simple question

    If I buy an iPhone, isn't it MY phone? Don't I get to decide what is objectionable content by not loading that app or going to that website? When did Apple become my parents? After all, I'm 44 years old. I think I can make a few decision for myself.

     

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  15.  
    identicon
    Matt, May 8th, 2009 @ 11:19am

    Re: Simple question

    If I buy an iPhone, isn't it MY phone?

    No, absolutely not. You're essentially renting it from Apple. Sucks, don't it?

     

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  16.  
    identicon
    Apple in Wonderland, May 8th, 2009 @ 11:19am

    Of Course

    Wait, So The iPhone's Browser Can Access The Sun's Page 3... But If Another App Does, It's Obscene?

    Of course! What's so hard to understand about that?

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  17.  
    identicon
    Lickity Split, May 8th, 2009 @ 11:19am

    Re: Re: Re:

    must be nice to work for your folks.

     

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  18.  
    identicon
    Weird Harold's former #5 fan, May 8th, 2009 @ 11:21am

    If you want porn, go find porn. Page3 is not porn.
    I'm still not clicking on it. :)

     

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  19.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, May 8th, 2009 @ 11:23am

    Moral watchguards

    This kind of inconsistency is inevitable when someone sets themselves up as the moral watchguard of the world.

     

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  20.  
    identicon
    Headbhang, May 8th, 2009 @ 11:30am

    Fuck Apple

    I love my iPod to bits but... Fuck Apple and its greedy double standards.

     

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  21.  
    identicon
    Yakko Warner, May 8th, 2009 @ 11:34am

    Re: Re:

    Well, if "all" they were doing were blocking Page 3, yeah.

    But what they're doing is rejecting a whole application because it can access Page 3 (or rather, because it accesses a site that contains "Page 3").

    I mean, how is this app different than a browser for newspaper sites? And it gets banned because one of those newspapers that a user might choose to read contains content someone might find objectionable?

    On those grounds, they might as well categorically reject any application that retrieves and displays content from anywhere on the internet. :?

     

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  22.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, May 8th, 2009 @ 11:41am

    Re:

    I know why. cuz there there is no kiddie porn?

     

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  23.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Poster, May 8th, 2009 @ 11:45am

    Re: Re: Simple question

    Yes, it does.

     

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  24.  
    identicon
    pegr, May 8th, 2009 @ 11:51am

    And Apple backed down from the NiN thing, BTW

     

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  25.  
    identicon
    Overstressed Admin, May 8th, 2009 @ 11:57am

    Good to be the Admin

    I clicked on the link...

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  26.  
    identicon
    Cixelsid, May 8th, 2009 @ 12:10pm

    Re: Good to be the Admin

    It is good link.

     

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  27.  
    identicon
    Scooper, May 8th, 2009 @ 1:33pm

    Re: NiN vs Apple

    clearly, Apple loses revenue if it allows the sale of apps that allow users to stream songs, that otherwise they would buy through iTunes.
    I bet it is that simple.

     

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  28.  
    identicon
    Easily Amused, May 8th, 2009 @ 2:00pm

    Re: Re:

    it's not objectionable, they show no skin on the front page (not even censor bars), you have to click further to see any funbags.

     

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  29.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, May 8th, 2009 @ 2:18pm

    Re: Re: Good to be the Admin

    When I looked at the link, it winked back.

     

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  30.  
    identicon
    mojo, May 8th, 2009 @ 2:53pm

    Of course none of us have seen the app, but if it had a big, flashing pink button somewhere that said "DOWNLOAD THE TOPLESS PAGE 3 GIRL" I can see how it might be considered spotlighting porn.

    As people have already learned, *subtlety* is the key to getting around the Apple censors.

     

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  31.  
    identicon
    The infamous Joe, May 8th, 2009 @ 3:41pm

    Re:

    I always find it funny when someone refers to jailbreaking an iPhone as "hacking". I'm sure it's technically correct, but in my mind "hacking" is something more difficult than clicking a few buttons and following a few on-screen (timed so you can't mess it up) instructions.

    I know, I bring nothing to the table. :)

     

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  32.  
    identicon
    The infamous Joe, May 8th, 2009 @ 3:42pm

    Re: Blah Blah Blah

    What you did there, I see it.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  33.  
    identicon
    Pete Braven, May 9th, 2009 @ 4:49am

    It's Obscene?

    Oh great,.. next we'll have some idiot saying that babies must be blindfolded while breast-feeding? :P

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  34.  
    identicon
    Trevlac, May 9th, 2009 @ 9:01am

    Re:

    "Apple cannot just open up the app store to anyone that wants to post apps, because people would post malicious apps."

    That simply isn't the case. For all of us out there with jailbroken iPhones, Cydia or Ice now, has some great source servers for wonderful applications and modifications to the iPhone. Yet no malicious code. I chalk it up to the same reason hardly anyone writes malware for Apple or *NIX based operating systems in the first place.

    And by the way Apple, until you DO give me full control over the device I purchased, I'm keeping it jailbroken. And get rid of that arrogant "killswitch" on your apps.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  35.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, May 9th, 2009 @ 1:14pm

    Re: Good to be the Admin

    Bookmark.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]


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