Why Apple Banned Sex Apps: We Were Getting Complaints From Women

Illustration for article titled Why Apple Banned Sex Apps: We Were Getting Complaints From Women

Over the past few days we've watched app after app after app become a casualty in Apple's gradual clean up of the App Store—a ban on nearly all titillating apps. Apple executive Phil Schiller finally explains what happened:

It came to the point where we were getting customer complaints from women who found the content getting too degrading and objectionable, as well as parents who were upset with what their kids were able to see.

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As those women ignore the existence of parental controls, Schiller continues to explain that Apple "obviously care[s] about developers, but in the end ha[s] to put the needs of the kids and parents first." Somehow that's supposed to help us understand why Sports Illustrated's and FHM's apps remain in the App Store:

When asked about the Sports Illustrated app, Mr. Schiller said Apple took the source and intent of an app into consideration. "The difference is this is a well-known company with previously published material available broadly in a well-accepted format," he said.

So the lesson is that as long as your parents and grandparents recognize the brand, it's acceptable wanking material? Or is it that if enough mums complain about fart apps then those too will be purged from the App Store?

As we've said before:

What's sad about this is that in Apple's early years, it was somewhat of a counterpoint to corporate computing for suits, by suits. They were supposed to make computers for people, by real humans. Founded by a man who asked potential employees when they lost their virginity as part of an interview. Today we have a company that has baby music in its commercials, like we're all 10 year old idiots who have never heard the word fuck—let alone have fucked—and need to be protected from little programs that may have breasts in them.

Then again, Steve Jobs knows his legacy and it isn't sex apps. It's great hardware and software.

But why the hell can't gadget porn and real porn coexist? [NYT via Tech Crunch]

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DISCUSSION

Personally, I dont have an IPhone and dont care what they put in their apps. Assuming parental controls are in place, especially if browsing the apps for sale is also G rated, I dont see what the objection is. I couldnt care less what you spend your 99 cents on.

I am somewhat concerned, though, that Apple doesnt that the PR balls to just say, "We didnt like the App", but instead are fanning the pass-the-buck flames by saying women and parents complained. Apple does what Apple damn well pleases and trying to shift the focus off business decisions to say suddenly that Apple listens to the public isnt believeable.

Man up Apple. Approve Apps or not and then stick by your decision and stop whining that "Mommy made me do it".