Well, I’ve given up on trying anything too humorous for the App Store— if you have to finish your idea BEFORE it’s approved, what’s the point?
But that hasn’t stopped others from trying ideas that are beyond the pale, and some that are so truly tasteless, that our little attempted joke at the expense of the outgoing president of the US seems really sterile by comparison.
I’m sure you’ve all heard about the “Baby Shaker” app controversy. It got the press scrambling to look at Apple’s app approval stories once more and, after months of assuming the whole thing had been relegated to its proper place as a footnote in the appendix of the Apple history books, I got contacted by ABC News and the Wall Street Journal over Apple’s rejection of Freedom Time.
- Banned by Apple: 9 iPhone App Rejects – ABC News (page 5)
- Apple’s Gatekeeper Role Draws Scrutiny – WSJ.com
All very exciting, I suppose, except that the reporters never seem to get the gist of what I was trying to say, which was this:
If Apple makes itself the gatekeeper, it is actually causing itself the problems it’s trying to avoid. By rejecting an app that makes fun of Bush, but accepting one that lets you kill babies, it implies that it disapproves of one and approves of the other. If someone had made this application for Windows, Mac OS X, or any other desktop system, no one would accuse Microsoft, Apple or Linux for not building an OS that prevents Baby Shaker applications from being installed. Apple made both a whole lot more work and a whole lot more controversy for itself by insisting on manually gatekeeping for every single app that goes in the store.