Apple: Only “professional” satirists can make fun.

Well the Freedom Time controversy has long passed from my mind, except when some other story pops up that reminds me.

Today I had the chance to read Apple’s new App Store Approval Guidelines (registered developers can read them here), and by “new” I mean brand new as it’s essentially the first time they’ve posted them in full, since most of these more specific rules were known to developers previously only by osmosis, trial-and-error, or consultation with mystics.

It’s great to see they’ve revealed the 5MB per 5 minute rule for streaming media, something we found out by trial-and-error but was conveyed by us by a helpful App Store review team member, but it’s a bit disheartening to see the rule that prohibited us from making light fun of The Man Who Clears Brush put into relief:

14. Personal attacks
14.1 Any app that is defamatory, offensive, mean-spirited, or likely to place the targeted individual or group in harms way will be rejected
14.2 Professional political satirists and humorists are exempt from the ban on offensive or mean-spirited commentary

So this is how the Pulitzer-prize winning cartoonist’s app rejection reversal is justified, officially in the rules, while “amateur” satirists like yours truly are by definition, “defamatory, offensive and mean-spirited.”

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1 Response to Apple: Only “professional” satirists can make fun.

  1. Stefan says:

    Apple has a right to distribute only those apps it approves of, but only if it allows its customers to have alternate sources of apps and doesn’t delete apps a customer has installed without his permission.

    As it stands now, the iPhone and the iPad are vendor lock-in products, and vendor lock-in means bend over and pretend you’re in Turkey.

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