stories filed under: "arbitrary"
Fri, May 22nd 2009 6:55pm
Apple's double standards in deciding which iPhone apps to reject have hit plenty of developers. Apparently it's fine to access any sort of content through the device's web browser, but if you have an app that accesses anything Apple deems objectionable, it's obscene and therefore blocked. The latest rejection along these lines is of an e-book reader which lets people download and read books from Project Gutenberg, a trove of digitized public-domain works. One book in its collection is the ancient Indian sex guide The Kama Sutra; in Apple's eyes, the ability to access the book from the app is grounds enough to reject it. The app is simply designed to access Project Gutenberg, and users select which titles they want to read. The developer says he wasn't even aware that The Kama Sutra was in Gutenberg's archives, but he also points out that several other e-book apps can access it, while, of course, it's also available on the web. The guy has now created a version of the app that specifically blocks access to The Kama Sutra, in hopes Apple will deem it acceptable. Fair enough, since he just wants to get the app out there. But it doesn't make Apple's arbitrary approval process -- and the stupidity it regularly displays -- any better. Update: And, once again, following a bit of press coverage, Apple caves. Still, it really shouldn't take press coverage to force Apple to fix situations like this.
by Mike Masnick
Fri, May 8th 2009 9:58am
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?