Culture

by Mike Masnick


Filed Under:
app store, arbitrary, iphone, page 3

Companies:
apple, the sun



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?

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

    Must. Not. Click. Link.

    (until I get home, anyway)

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

    • identicon
      A Dan, 8 May 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.

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

      • identicon
        Chronno S. Trigger, 8 May 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?

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

      • identicon
        :Lobo Santo, 8 May 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.

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

      • identicon
        Easily Amused, 8 May 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.

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

  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 8 May 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.

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

    • identicon
      Chuck Norris' Enemy (deceased), 8 May 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 chronology ]

    • icon
      Pangolin (profile), 8 May 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.

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

      • identicon
        Yakko Warner, 8 May 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. :?

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

    • identicon
      Scooper, 8 May 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.

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

  • identicon
    Owen, 8 May 2009 @ 10:14am

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

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

    • identicon
      Ima Fish, 8 May 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.

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

  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 8 May 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.

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

    • identicon
      The infamous Joe, 8 May 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. :)

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

    • identicon
      Trevlac, 9 May 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 chronology ]

  • identicon
    Ima Fish, 8 May 2009 @ 10:48am

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

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

  • icon
    ChurchHatesTucker (profile), 8 May 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 chronology ]

  • icon
    Troy A. Wilson Sr. (profile), 8 May 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.

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

  • identicon
    Apple in Wonderland, 8 May 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 chronology ]

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

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

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

  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 8 May 2009 @ 11:23am

    Moral watchguards

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

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

  • identicon
    Headbhang, 8 May 2009 @ 11:30am

    Fuck Apple

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

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

  • identicon
    pegr, 8 May 2009 @ 11:51am

    And Apple backed down from the NiN thing, BTW

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

  • identicon
    Overstressed Admin, 8 May 2009 @ 11:57am

    Good to be the Admin

    I clicked on the link...

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

  • identicon
    mojo, 8 May 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.

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

  • identicon
    Pete Braven, 9 May 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 chronology ]


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