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AT&T has no qualms about blaming partner Apple for app rejections

Under investigation by the Federal Communications Commission, AT&T has passed the blame for the Google Voice application rejection on to partner Apple.  According to AT&T's spokesperson, "AT&T does not manage or approve applications for the App Store. We have received the letter and will, of course, respond to it."

The FCC has demanded that Apple and AT&T explain the process by which applications are rejected.  In particular its asking what contractual conditions or non-contractual understandings with AT&T influence app store rejections. 

The government also asked, "Does AT&T have any role in the approval of iPhone applications generally (or in certain cases)? If so, under what circumstances, and what role does it play? What roles are specified in the contractual provisions between Apple and AT&T (or any non-contractual understandings) regarding the consideration of particular iPhone applications?"

The insinuation by AT&T, though, that it plays no part in app store policing and that regulation is solely the work of Apple is flat out false, though.  AT&T previously ordered Apple to force Slingbox to operate over WiFi only.  AT&T had stated:
Slingbox, which would use large amounts of wireless network capacity, could create congestion and potentially prevent other customers from using the network. The application does not run on our 3G wireless network. Applications like this, which redirect a TV signal to a personal computer, are specifically prohibited under our terms of service. We consider smartphones like the iPhone to be personal computers in that they have the same hardware and software attributes as PCs.
Steve Jobs also noted during a Q&A session that AT&T is actively policing voice-over-IP apps.  He stated that AT&T is the reason why apps like Skype are WiFi only.  In the end it appears that despite its claims of innocence, AT&T may play more of a role in iPhone app policing than it admits.

The finger pointing by AT&T does illustrate increasing tension between the two companies.  Apple took a number of apparent snipes at AT&T during its Worldwide Developers Conference (WWDC) keynote address, where it introduced the new iPhone 3G S.


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RE: Why is the FCC involved?
By Motoman on 8/4/2009 3:53:08 PM , Rating: -1
Oh, and I thought I should just make one more clarification on the public vs. private concept as it relates to companies.

An organization is only "public" in one case - when it is a governmental agency, such as the EPA, the DOT, a public library, the unemployment office, the military, etc.

Any organization that is not a governmental agency is "private" - which is virtually every corporation that exists.

Being more formal, you may refer to these two categories as "public-sector" and "private-sector."

A private-sector corporation may be privately-owned...Cargill, for example, is a massive grain and ag-product company based in Minneapolis, which no one truly knows what their revenues or profits are...because it's privately held and they don't have to publish their financials. Probably something like a $70 billion company, but it's privately held, so no way to know (unless the owner just decided to tell you). On the other hand, General Mills, just across town (so to speak) is a publicly held company, which is to say it's traded on the stock market and you can buy ownership in it. Because of that, they have to publish their financials and naturally all stockholders get to vote at stockholder meetings, and the company has to run in a very transparent way.

Cargill and General Mills are, then, in that sense vastly different in terms of what we do and don't know about them, because one is privately held and the other is publicly held. But they are both private companies, because neither is a governmental agency...get it?


RE: Why is the FCC involved?
By dark matter on 8/4/2009 4:19:38 PM , Rating: 1
Nice argument. If it wasn't a straw man argument.

Trying to dismiss my point by claiming I insuated or introducing the phallacy that I said Apple was a public company is a complete fail.

I stopped reading on your first line because I never once said, or claimed, or even implied that Apple was a public company.

You fail.


RE: Why is the FCC involved?
By Motoman on 8/4/2009 4:20:49 PM , Rating: 1
quote:
Apple is a private company? Nope. it is a listed company. A private company would be owned, yep, you guessed it, privately. No shareholders to be accountable to. To be a private company you would need to buy every last share and then delist the company.


...I'm sorry, you must not have read the first paragraph you typed there. Must have been sleep-typing then? You clearly are not getting that a publicly-listed company is still a private company, and therefore not subject to the whims of the public-at-large. Hence the rest of your fallacious arguement.

...nice grammar fail on "phallacy" too, BTW.


RE: Why is the FCC involved?
By dark matter on 8/4/2009 4:35:00 PM , Rating: 2
I see a pattern emerging with your posts.

But lets roll with you for a minute.

Company x = company y = private company.

Even though

company x = listed on the stock exchange
company y = privately owned.

ah, totally with you now. I'm dealin with an idiot. I did wonder what that familiar smell was.

End of conversation with you, you're unable to hold any kind of logical discussion.


RE: Why is the FCC involved?
By Motoman on 8/4/2009 4:39:29 PM , Rating: 1
You are freaking hilarious.

Not only are you obviously not reading my posts, you are also either horribly misinformed, or suffering some mental disorder.

What you categorically don't get is that you yourself are totally mixing up what it is to be publicly-held or privately-held, and a private-sector or a public-sector company.

None of the companies mentioned here (Apple, Cargill, General Mills) are public-sector. Because, as noted, to be public-sector companies you have to be a governmental agency...at which point you are under the control of "the people."

Apple and General Mills are publicly-held companies, which is to say they are "publicly listed" or in your poor terminology, just "listed.' But they are both private companies, because neither is a governmental agency...and therefore neither of them answer to "the people" - they just answer to their stockholders.

Cargill is an example of a private-sector company that is privately-held, therfore not "listed," and therefore is not answerable to anyone other than the guy who owns it.

I'm really sorry you're having such a hard time with this. Try reading it more slowly.


RE: Why is the FCC involved?
By dark matter on 8/4/2009 4:55:42 PM , Rating: 2
Ah, back to the straw man argument.

You keep banging on about public-sector, I never mentioned it.

Now bugger off, as you're just boring me now.


RE: Why is the FCC involved?
By Motoman on 8/4/2009 5:08:13 PM , Rating: 2
You are correct, you never mentioned it.

It would be rather irrational for you to mention a concept you aren't even aware of. That's why I'm trying to educate you.

The two concepts you need to get a handle on are:

Public-sector vs. private-sector (which is to say, government or non-government)

*and*

Publicly-held vs. privately-held (which is to say, listed or not listed)

Apple is a publicly-held private company. Period. You know what? Call Apple and ask them. Or your bank. Or an investor. Or a lawyer, an economist, a professor of business, whatever. Any of the above will confirm that for you quite nicely.


RE: Why is the FCC involved?
By dark matter on 8/4/2009 5:13:20 PM , Rating: 2
I'll just ask your mum next time I'm round there. ;)


RE: Why is the FCC involved?
By Motoman on 8/4/2009 5:13:06 PM , Rating: 2
That would be fine. She has a firm grasp on the subject, and she'd be happy to educate you on the matter.


RE: Why is the FCC involved?
By dark matter on 8/4/2009 5:18:24 PM , Rating: 2
She certainly does have a firm grasp indeed! ;)


RE: Why is the FCC involved?
By Motoman on 8/4/2009 4:25:06 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
Yes, sure they can do whatever they want with their app store, as long as they don't offer it for sale to consumers. You see, at that point they cannot do whatever they want with their app store. For instance they cannot sell you something, then take it back off you. There are several laws that you have to adhere to when you sell things, as there should be.


...this also perfectly demonstrates you have no idea what you're talking about. Apple, as a private-sector company, whether publicly-held or privately-held, has every right to "do whatever they want with their app store." And there is not a single basis for you to contest that undeniable fact. See the DirecTV example above, and also see the Ts & Cs on the Apple site that you agree to when you use their service. That is *precisely* what those Ts & Cs say they can do, and they are precisely what you agree to as the consumer when you choose to use that service.


RE: Why is the FCC involved?
By dark matter on 8/4/2009 5:03:26 PM , Rating: 2
The point I was making. Was that apple cannot do Whatever they like, despite being owned by shareholders, or owned privately, or even being owned by Elvis himself.

They can stick a shedload of T&C's in there, but at no point do those T&C's overide state or federal laws. They cannot do whatever they want.

Dude, you really need to get laid.


RE: Why is the FCC involved?
By Motoman on 8/4/2009 5:05:01 PM , Rating: 2
...there is no state or federal law that prohibits what they're doing with their Ts & Cs. Don't start playing out the "whatever they want" to mean things you know full well I didn't mean, like selling human babies or something. They can do whatever they want within the extent of the laws of the land, and no laws of the land prohibit what they are doing.

They are, in fact, very common Ts & Cs to have. You'll find similar language all over the place.

I get all the sex I want from my wife...thanks for worrying about me though. Someday, when you move out of your mom's basement, maybe a girl will let you touch her.


RE: Why is the FCC involved?
By dark matter on 8/4/2009 5:10:46 PM , Rating: 2
Oh, about your wife. She used to go my school, she was called john back then.


RE: Why is the FCC involved?
By Motoman on 8/4/2009 5:13:48 PM , Rating: 2
Ah yes, the ad-hominem attack. Surely evidence of a strong position with your arguement.


RE: Why is the FCC involved?
By intelpatriot on 8/4/2009 5:14:22 PM , Rating: 2
So your position is that,

goods and services can be tied up together in any manner and with any conditions the vendor (and multiple contracting vendors) see fit?

a public limited company is just a private company with the benefit of benefit of limited liability?

And I hope your wife agreed to the T&C of your contract for sex-services :)


RE: Why is the FCC involved?
By intelpatriot on 8/4/2009 5:16:05 PM , Rating: 2
dam I made a spelling phail


RE: Why is the FCC involved?
By Motoman on 8/4/2009 5:18:04 PM , Rating: 2
As a matter of fact, you're not far off the mark there.

Within the laws of the land, a company can set the Ts & Cs for their service in any way they see fit. You, as the consumer, can choose to abide by those Ts & Cs and purchase their service, or you can choose to not purchase that service. Apple's Ts & Cs are not only perfectly legal, they're common.

A PLC only exists in the UK, as far as I know, but as far as I know they would have limited liability, in the same way than an LLC or various types of corporations would. Liability doesn't seem to have any bearing on this thread though.


RE: Why is the FCC involved?
By Motoman on 8/4/2009 4:18:37 PM , Rating: 1
http://www.answers.com/topic/public-company

Many definitions there for you too, if you don't want to believe me. Your favorite, I'm guessing, is on there too - Wikipedia, which starts off with "A publicly-traded company is a private company that has permission to offer its registered securities (stock, bonds, etc.) for sale to the general public..."


"I mean, if you wanna break down someone's door, why don't you start with AT&T, for God sakes? They make your amazing phone unusable as a phone!" -- Jon Stewart on Apple and the iPhone














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