Apple yanks 500px off of App Store due to "pornography"

Apple has always taken pride in their walled garden approach, claiming that it helps protect users from malicious apps and giving them a better user experience. Some of that is true; malware is much more likely to hit an Android device than one running iOS. However, that protection also takes away a lot of freedom of choice.

Today, Apple removed the photo-sharing tool 500px from the App Store. While applications get removed all the time, the reason for the removal is puzzling. According to TechCrunch, Apple stated that the popular app was removed for "featuring pornographic images and material."

The problem with that statement is that 500px already filters pornographic images from their site. While it's true that the site does have photos of naked women, they're generally of an "artistic" nature as the site attracts both professional photographers and high end hobbyists. Even worse, 500px was in communication with Apple and was in the process of limiting the search results to be even more restrictive, but instead of waiting, Apple pulled the program from the store. What's even more strange is the fact that this application has been available in the Apple App Store for the past 16 months without issue.

So where does Apple draw the line on so-called pornographic material? Should Safari be removed from everyone's iPhone since users can search for naughty pictures? What about apps like Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram? Why was 500px singled out in this instance? That's a concern you run into when you allow one company to control the flow of information to a device.

Source: TechCrunch | Image courtesy of 500px

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Microsoft claims that I can't store nude pictures on my SkyDrive, and now Apple is worried about apps that can be used to transfer 'pornographic' content.

Who are those companies to tell me what sort of content I can and I can't see (hairsplitters: I am talking of course about content that isn't a federal offence).

So If I am a photographer and did some artsy nude photos, where do I stand? Or maybe I am a middle age guy who is into (legal) amateur porn. Is that a crime?

I'll be glad when developers and users revolt and we can get rid of "app stores" altogether.

I can think of no reason that Apple deserves 30% of sales from every app store purchase and every in app purchase as well. It's pure greed. Now Microsoft wants to get into it with Windows 8. It's not used to make anything better, it's pure profit. It doesn't make an app store better.

People have been able to purchase and install programs from the beginning of computers without needing to give 30% of the money to a central app store.

When will people get tired of being fleeced by these companies. I bought an iphone 3gs when it came out. The app store was great but I see nothing about it that should require apple to recieve 30% of every sale.

Everyone hates when companies nickel and dime us. Think about all the extra charges on your phone bill. All of the taxes and fees on your electric bill. We hate that, yet nobody cares that Apple takes a 30% cut of everything you buy on the app store. Microsoft and others are following suit. Where do we say enough is enough?

I loved my iphone but I've come to hate Apple simply because of the greed and ****ty attitude they show to anyone who doesn't tow the line with them and their policies. Microsoft is much the same and hell any public company with shareholders to answer to. They are about making more money this quarter than last quarter. They don't care about customer satisfaction unless it might hit their profits. I don't know what Amazon and Google charge in their app stores. It might be the same. It's all just a bunch of ****ty people in a big room trying to find ways to make more money without having to actually do anything. That's what the world is becoming. How do I make billions without spending any money?

The app developers freely choose to create apps to be given exposure in these online stores. As far as I'm concerned, these app stores have given thousands of unknown developers a chance to make money. So what if they have to pay a commission of sorts. Doesn't bother me in the least.

Not only that, it gives app developers an easy way to deploy their app to thousands and thousands of people with little to no effort at all.
Don't forget it also costs money to provide a platform for your customers to obtain your software. And for large user based apps this can be quite heavy on their expenses.
Not worth it spreading something for 0,99cents as most apps are priced.

right? i guess people like apple holding their hand, telling them what to look at and what not to... 500px has some awesome pictures, not much nudity, and i've never seen porn!

I'm just wondering when Microsoft is going to abandon their Windows product because you can use it to view pornography both online and offline.

"Due to ability to view pornographic materials on our Windows operating system we decided to stop selling this product and are now out of OS business".

Haha.

+1

Couldn't Windows Live Mail be used to distribute pornography? Or even copyrighted content from Playboy, Hustler et al.?

Even worse, one could use Outlook 2013 to distribute child pornography. Oh the humanity!

I guess next step is taking down Safari from iOS for same reason. If no, then it's a subject for antitrust lawsuit.

Of all the Apple-related news, this one got chosen?

How about this one: Apple still at the top in US with 51% share of smartphone OS sale for Q4 2012 (Android 44.2%. AT&T : 74,7% iOS/19.6 Android. Verizon 58.8% iOS/38.5% Android).

Or how about this one: of the 9.8 million smartphones Verizon sold the last quarter, 6.2 million of those were iPhones. And out of the 10 millions that AT&T sold, around 8 millions were iPhones.

Or how about this one: because of the new announced numbers of iPhone sold, Apple is expected to have sold more than 50 million iPhone in the previous quarter only.

With these new numbers just ahead of tomorrow's earnings call, I think that the above unmentioned news are well more worthwhile than this news post.

Translation: "I'm an Apple fanboy, how dare you mention how retarded they are. I can only see and hear good things about my cult. Derp derp derp."

Really? Does everything in your mind have to be about fanboyism or Apple versus whatever company? Any logical person, anyone with common sense, can realise that some news are worth more than other news.

Yes, Apple rejects apps for stupid reason. Yes, Apple accepts apps to later reject them. It happens all the time. So that Apple rejects another app for a good or bad reason, who cares? Do you care that Justin Bieber showed his arse on Twitter? No? Well just Google it, and see how many news articles were written about it. What it worth it? Absolutely not.

Same thing applies here. Can this app rejection be news? Yes. Should it be one? No.

And if you need to know, Apple responded the following:

The app was removed from the App Store for featuring pornographic images and material, a clear violation of our guidelines. We also received customer complaints about possible child pornography. We've asked the developer to put safeguards in place to prevent pornographic images and material in their app.

einsteinbqat said,
And if you need to know, Apple responded the following:

The app was removed from the App Store for featuring pornographic images and material, a clear violation of our guidelines. We also received customer complaints about possible child pornography. We've asked the developer to put safeguards in place to prevent pornographic images and material in their app.


This is an app that has been downloaded nearly 1 million times in the past year -- and Apple took it down, without warning. But left things like Instagram and Twitter up. Why? It's a valid question. Have you ever used 500px? There's really no pornography there - it's all artistic stuff (nudity != pornography)

einsteinbqat said,
Yes, Apple rejects apps for stupid reason. Yes, Apple accepts apps to later reject them. It happens all the time. So that Apple rejects another app for a good or bad reason, who cares? Do you care that Justin Bieber showed his arse on Twitter? No? Well just Google it, and see how many news articles were written about it.

Quick, pull all twitter clients from the App Store! Twitter clients allow you to see a naked butt! Nudity cannot be allowed to be seen on an iOS device, not even Bieber butt!

*sigh*

Anyone wanting to ridicule Apple for that, you're damn right.
Queue up in this post's thread, you're welcome here and receive free likes from this Apple fan.

I'm out of here for now.

GS:mac

You have to admit, the reasoning provided could provide some fun if someone wants other apps removed because of there is a chance of boobies.

I get a feel they want to ensure they look appealing to China and therefore took it down to appease their government.

China already censors the internet so they don't see search engines as an issue but internal apps that are on App Stores are less easy to circumvent.

imachip said,
I get a feel they want to ensure they look appealing to China and therefore took it down to appease their government.

China already censors the internet so they don't see search engines as an issue but internal apps that are on App Stores are less easy to circumvent.


You do know apps can be rejected and accepted per country?

If anything, it's just the American values coming into play here.
Oh and yes, this is not specific to America.
Most of the world seems to think sexuality is a taboo and violence is totally acceptable.

GS:mac

It's stupid how often my app has been forced to be rated 17+ just because it included a UIWebView control that often goes directly to a Google search. As if kids in the millions were using my app to search for porn (it's a hospital lab values app). Good lord!