from the consistent-inconsistency dept
It should be clear by now that Apple sees most of us as the proverbial unwashed masses and is on something of a mission to immolate immoral thought patterns by trying to put everyone's head in the collective sand. That seems to be the only explanation for their app store censoring process, which has in the past removed historical context from games, the human body from consideration, comic books it deems to be immoral, and literature. All, mind you, in the name of a corporate moral code that probably wouldn't hold up under closer scrutiny.
But even if Apple wants to play the morality card, it presents the problem of consistency. Moral stances, after all, don't allow for picking and choosing due to outside factors. Yet that appears to be exactly what is occurring with the latest app store nixing of a popular game about growing marijuana, called Weed Firm.
As you might have noticed the game is no longer available on the Apple App Store. This was entirely Apple's decision, not ours. We guess the problem was that the game was just too good and got to number one in All Categories, since there are certainly a great number of weed based apps still available, as well as games promoting other so-called 'illegal activities' such as shooting people, crashing cars and throwing birds at buildings...If we let hypocrites determine what content is suitable for us we will soon all be watching teletubbies instead of Breaking Bad and playing... oh I don't know… nothing good comes to mind, without some form of 'illegal activity' or other really.A couple of things to note. First, for those of us that are older than, say, fifteen, the rapid decriminalization of all things marijuana in this country is on a pace that can be described as no less than staggering. If you simply chart out what's gone on over the past decade and extrapolate into the next, it isn't off base to expect marijuana to go the way of tobacco and alcohol within that time. So the morality play is on shaky ground to begin with. Add to that, as Kotaku does, that the only thing consistent about Apple's app removal standards is its astounding inconsistency, and we should probably all begin asking ourselves exactly what the point of any of this is.
You can find places to buy weed on the app store. You can rate different strains of weed. You can download apps that teach you more about marijuana, or get apps that will give you various cosmetic weed changes to your phone. You can even roll fake joints. You can't, however, download a game where you grow marijuana. Other games, such as Weed Farmer and Weed Tycoon, remain active on the app store for now—but these games weren't as popular or as well-rated as Weed Firm was.What, on the face of it, might have appeared to be a genuine, if misplaced, attempt to apply some kind of moral code suddenly dissolves into a PR response. As long as the marijuana-related games are generating money without being popular enough to draw any kind of wider attention, Apple's moral qualms go by the wayside. They either don't have the interest or the actual capacity to actively police all such offending games. Either answer renders the morality play moot to begin with: either you can enforce your strict guidelines in general or you can't. Apple, in the case of games revolving around marijuana, clearly can't. So what are we all doing here?
Well, we're suffering under Apple's delusion that we're children, of course. Children in need of a firm hand and the guidance of our parents, which apparently somehow became Apple. I suppose it isn't all that different from the old AOL walled-internet days, which I happily note went the hell away over a decade ago when the internet and its average denizen grew up. Maybe it's time now for Apple to stop it with the whole Puritan routine and start trusting their customers a bit more?