Apple: Video Games Shouldn’t Address Controversial Issues

iPhone User
(Priscilla Du Preez)

Apple recently rejected a video game that dealt with the topic of sweatshop labor in a satirical manner. According to Apple’s submission guidelines, they won’t accept apps (i.e., video games) that tackle controversial subject matter (e.g., religion, sex, politics). Indeed, the guidelines state “If you want to criticize a religion, write a book. If you want to describe sex, write a book or a song, or create a medical app. It can get complicated, but we have decided to not allow certain kinds of content in the App Store.”

Mind you, I’m not terribly sad that one can’t find pornographic apps in the App store. But in this case, Apple’s judgment strikes me as bizarre, disappointing, and shortsighted. There’s a vast difference between apps that promote pornography, and apps that contain social commentary (even potentially offensive social commentary), and their policies should recognize that.

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