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Apple continues to carefully police its users' behavior. It has rejected eReader applications, which it believes are used to infringe upon copyrighted works, and rejected a dictionary app until profanity was removed from it.
Apple believes apps would likely be employed for nefarious piracy purposes

Many have fantasized about using their iPhone as a high-resolution handheld version of Amazon's Kindle eBook reader or as a handheld dictionary.  An eBook reader and dictionary applications on the iPhone certainly seemed technically feasible on the iPhone.  But would they withstand the true test -- Apple's at times inconsistent app approval board?

A dictionary app called Ninja Words, written by Matchstick software, promised to open the gates for eBook readers on the iPhone.  It was supposed to offer a "really fast" dictionary search.  The app was submitted on May 13 and was quickly rejected due to a flaw.  States Phil Crosby, one of Ninjawords's developers, "Our app was crashing on the latest beta of iPhone OS 3.0. We quickly fixed this issue and resubmitted."

The now fully-working app has just been rejected again, this time due to the fact that it contains swear words.  Despite the fact that you had to explicitly type the swear word in its entirety to look it up ("fuc" returned no profane results), Apple complained, "Applications must not contain any obscene, pornographic, offensive or defamatory content or materials of any kind (text, graphics, images, photographs, etc.), or other content or materials that in Apple's reasonable judgement may be found objectionable by iPhone or iPod touch users."

The makers resubmitted, this time without the swear words.  However, Apple still made it a 17+ application, requiring users to meet an age requirement to download it. 

EBook readers met an even worse fate.  Apple is reportedly rejecting them in mass.  Why, you ask?  Well, it says that the technology is typically use to pirate works that the user does not enjoy legal access to.  Apple states, "(T)his category of applications is often used for the purpose of infringing upon third party rights. We have chosen to not publish this type of application to the App Store." At first glance, this policy seems in line with Apple's approach to applications that promise charitable contributions. Apple cannot police the developers and will not allow possibly fraudulent postings on their store. Apple does not want to be in the position of vetting rights claims."

Apple is currently under investigation by the Federal Communications Commission over its rejection of the Google voice app.  With its growing track record of rejecting useful apps, Apple's industry leading iPhone is truly missing out on its chance to distance itself from its competitors.  Instead its raising red flags with the government and users alike.

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By Hyperion1400 on 8/6/2009 5:40:04 PM , Rating: 5
So let me get this straight.

They called the English language profane, and said people people who use Ebook readers are pirates. Did I miss anything?

(Yes, I realize it is a bit of an oversimplification, but only a bit)

By Hyperion1400 on 8/6/2009 5:42:12 PM , Rating: 3
Aw damn...

Curse your lack of an edit function DT!

Just ignore the obvious mistake...

By Denithor on 8/7/2009 8:08:01 AM , Rating: 5
Most people people would have never caught the mistake if you hadn't brought attention to it.


By VaultDweller on 8/7/2009 8:15:41 AM , Rating: 2
I had to read it five or six times before I spotted it, and didn't notice that you did the same thing until I started typing this reply.

By ipay on 8/7/2009 8:41:52 AM , Rating: 1
Our brains have become so good at filtering out such "noise" that it's now more difficult for us to see it than to ignore it...

On a completely unrelated note, I'm not surprised by this news at all. Once you realise that Apple (or maybe it's just Steve Jobs) actively hates the people who purchase their overpriced rubbish, and wants said people to die in a fire, everything makes sense.

By JasonMick on 8/6/2009 5:50:38 PM , Rating: 5
Silence, infidel, Brother Jobs in his infinite wisdom knows what is best for you. If he orders you to speak only beautiful Applese words of love and friendship like "cloud" and "fire" and "explosion" you will do as such. And if you are one of those evil pirate sorts, the supreme overlord will banish you to your land of swearing, eBook readers, baby shakers, third party hardware, and other unholy evils.

By ClownPuncher on 8/6/2009 6:48:22 PM , Rating: 5
I reject Apple, on Fascism grounds.

By maverick85wd on 8/7/2009 5:16:23 AM , Rating: 3
Seriously. What surprises me is not that Apple keeps doing this type of thing, but that people are surprised. What I REALLY don't understand is why people keep buying their crap. I absolutely LOVE the iPhone, but unless they change how little they respect their customers, I refuse to buy one.

By VaultDweller on 8/7/2009 8:05:34 AM , Rating: 2
You just came dangerously close to putting Godwin's Law into effect.

By smackababy on 8/7/2009 8:54:44 AM , Rating: 5
You know who else came close to putting Godwin's Law into effect? Hitler.

By VaultDweller on 8/7/2009 9:08:30 AM , Rating: 2
Well played.

Or terribly played.

I'm really not sure.

By MatthiasF on 8/6/2009 8:32:04 PM , Rating: 5
Part of me hopes you're joking while the other part knows you aren't.

By sprockkets on 8/8/2009 1:04:48 AM , Rating: 2
Didn't you or someone else say that the last time he said that?

Sorry if I miss the joke, if there is one :) , but I do like the fact that those posts came up again, and are both rated 5.

By CloudFire on 8/7/2009 4:46:28 AM , Rating: 3
" If he orders you to speak only beautiful Applese words of love and friendship like "cloud" and "fire"

HAHA. Oh god, why does my DT handle have to be CloudFire? Was this part of Brother Job's plan for what he wants in my life?

By jhb116 on 8/8/2009 10:59:56 AM , Rating: 2
Ironic that Apple's commercial, the anti-1984 world order one, still rates high on commercial top 10's for some insane reason and the one I think kicked off Apple's success. Maybe that commercial represents the opposite - you know, to confuse the masses?

Hopefully we don't become Borg under Job's rule.

By someguy123 on 8/6/2009 7:54:56 PM , Rating: 5
it's funny because the ipod's success is in large part thanks to its ability to store massive amounts of pirated music in one device.

By kellehair on 8/7/2009 8:57:21 AM , Rating: 5
Make this a 6 please.

By Murloc on 8/7/2009 10:27:02 AM , Rating: 3
you win the topic

By grath on 8/6/2009 8:32:05 PM , Rating: 5
Applications must not contain any obscene, pornographic, offensive or defamatory content or materials of any kind

So by that policy the following native iPhone apps might be kill switched any minute now!

iPod - they sing naughty words!
Safari - 80% of the web fits that description!
Maps - GPS your way to an adult video store!
Camera - make your own porn!
Mail - free viagara and bootleg Rx spam offends me!
YouTube - what better place to obscenely offend and defame people than youtube!

By Belard on 8/7/2009 2:17:19 AM , Rating: 2
Can't seem to rate you higher.

Morality police ALWAYS suck. If some kid already knows the F and S and any other words... there is no OMG! SHOCK value! This isn't the 50's.

Just like anything else:

-Video games don't make kids into killers
-Homos don't make other people into homosexuals because you know they exist.
-The sky is always blue
- Apple sells music that has curse words
- Apple sells(rents) movies that has sex and curse scenes.


Apple... I don't own your stuff, I'll give you credit were you deserve it, but this kind of crap is.... bull.

Grow up, apple.

By Breathless on 8/7/2009 9:17:19 AM , Rating: 2
The funny thing is that if there were suddenly no more "morality police", society would quickly turn into one big "Liberal Missouri", and you certainly don't want that... do you? The "free thinkers" need the "morality police" because generally the "rules" end up somewhere in the middle. When one side starts to overpower the other (eh hem... Obama adminstration take over) is when the major problems will start happening. Even though I don't like liberals, I understand that their existence is unfortunately necessary so far right doesn't screw up the earth the same way the far left will.

End Rant

By erple2 on 8/7/2009 2:08:04 PM , Rating: 2
The rant goes both ways. One could say that the other political side had overpowered for a long time leading up to the current left leaning political power.

You could also say that there were plenty of problems before the current Administration took office.

I don't like people that think that classifying people as one vs another. There's a difference of liberal and far left. In this political non-war, it's convenient to classify people as "us vs. them" where "them" is "anyone that isn't us".

I'm not so sure that the "morality police" keeps anything in check. It seems to exist solely as a device to try to keep itself relevant. I think that people will do what they want to do, "morality police" be damned. Some people will swing far to one side, others will swing the other way.

By Murloc on 8/7/2009 10:26:39 AM , Rating: 2
the stupid thing is that real dictonaries contain swears, it's just stupid, and it's not like it's THEIR responsibility.

By spartan014 on 8/7/2009 9:18:56 AM , Rating: 2
As for the second one, only until 'iBook' e-book format hits the iTunes store..

And of course the 'iReader' will be available at the app store at that time.

By tayhimself on 8/7/2009 11:59:30 AM , Rating: 2
"You can bet that Sony built a long-term business plan about being successful in Japan and that business plan is crumbling." -- Peter Moore, 24 hours before his Microsoft resignation

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