iPhone App Store Just Says No to Nudity -- For Now?

app_store_church_lady

Last week the first iPhone (and iPod touch) app to feature nudity was live in the iTunes App Store. Technically, however, it was simply a change in the server behind the app -- the developer added nude images.

Subsequently, however, the app became unavailable. The developer first reported that their own servers couldn't keep up with demand for the newly nudified images, but it turns out Apple laid the hammer down on the "soft-core porn" app:

Apple will not distribute applications that contain inappropriate content, such as pornography. The developer of this application added inappropriate content directly from their server after the application had been approved and distributed, and after the developer had subsequently been asked to remove some offensive content. This was a direct violation of the terms of the iPhone Developer Program. The application is no longer available on the App Store.

Given that Apple has included new parental controls and App Store restrictions in iPhone 3.0, including a declaration for nude content, and given the eternal argument that nudity is available for age-appropriate viewers via iTunes movies, is there some contradiction still at work? Or is Apple drawing the line artificially close for now while it watches and gauges reaction?

Footnote: 
[via CNN]

Rene Ritchie

Editor-in-Chief of iMore, co-host of Iterate, Debug, Review, Vector, and MacBreak Weekly podcasts. Cook, grappler, photon wrangler. Follow him on Twitter and Google+.

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iPhone App Store Just Says No to Nudity -- For Now?

37 Comments

Do we seriously need porn on the go?
I can definitely understand little boys wanting to put explicit images on their back grounds. It's called, use the email.

I agree, let's keep the app store wholesome. There is zero need for apps with nudity in them.
Good job apple.

I'd rather see adult community apps than a porn pic app. I also wish parent would actually block their kids from download 17+ apps. Teenagers are extremely irritating on chat apps, mostly young heterosexual males.

There are enough crapps to sift through. I don't want to see how bad it'll be when porn is allowed in the app store. Each description will have every keyword known to man listed too so they'll show up in every search. It'd be a nightmare since nudity isn't the only reason to block 17+ apps.

Ya ... I got no problem with porn, I just don't want the app store becoming a sesspool of get-rich-quick porn industry morons.

im glad they blocked it i mean its a app store!!!! not a porn store...
i mean be smart and look for nude pics on ur fone i mean u only have UMMM UHH "SAFARI BROWSOR" lets get it together pervs lol

Your reference to "the eternal argument that nudity is available for age-appropriate viewers via iTunes movies" isn't particularly compelling. Nudity within the context of a mainstream movie is a far cry from an app intended solely for distributing nude pictures. Your 'eternal argument' might have merit were iTunes allowing porn movies to be distributed but they are not so there isn't much of an argument.

So say the knights if the round morality! People stop patronizing porn fans. After seeing how insane America went after nipplegate, I came to realise that a lot of Americans seem to need their double morality in order to understand the acts of their ( former) government. Please wake up and realise that sex is just as much a part of life as food. Get over it already. And to use the amazing words of Rage against the Machine: Wake up!

Don't you have to be 18+ to watch porn? If Apple allows it for 17 year olds, wouldn't that be illegal?

Sex might be as much a part of life as food... But the U.S. has such a sensationalized view of it that it often takes more than it's fair share of media content.
Aside from the fact that I don't need a porn app on my phone since it's so readily available elsewhere... I'm with the rest of the people who doesn't want more clutter when i'm searching for legitimate apps.
Whatever apple's reasons... I don't much care. I'm not one who jumps on bandwagons of public outrage. But for the time being I'm against it. I'm past the age where an urge for porn could make me take a trip to a public bathroom stall with my on-the-go porn device.

Not all nudity is pornography. The App Store classification for nudity may exist to properly categorize, say, artistic- or medically-related nudity, while Apple still prohibits porn.

@rebo Define artistic, is a vague term.
Are you saying that any nudity that doesn't belong to "artistic" or medical categories is pornography?

Nobody's patronizing or persecuting porn fans. You have many other outlets for your porn needs, including the Safari Browser. All customers being equal, I would rather the iPorn (or iPron, whichever you prefer) be a separate application as I have no interest in that "category". For that matter, I wouldn't mind if they would seperate/filter games or other categories in my search results (feature request). I personally am growing tired with people's obsession with this topic and the need for instant access. Sometimes I understand why other people are sickened by our selfish culture (while they are starving and tending to their dead).

Nudity = Pornography?
LOL
thats what i'm talking about!! people are way too uptight with nudity in general. Not that we need it in the app store but who are these people complaining? the puritans?

@steve
I wouldn't download that application ever but I think that they doesn't be banned.
I have to take the train to go to my town, I have to remember "Nudity = Pornography" when I'll pass by the nudist beach I have in my town. A beach just 1 meter away where families are walking, jogging, etc. And no one cares about nude people sunbathing or swimming.

Nudity <> Pornography (not equal, for those not inclined)
...but
person looking for nudity or pornography in App Store <> a distinguished percentage of iPhone users (which by the way <> puritans). I love sex and when I see an attractive woman my brain sends it's little signals just like it should. ... but, my level of need is consistent with that which I already have, and I don't need a cluttered App Store (or videos, or everything else that the media tries to cram down my throat every hour of every day). The people that peddle the stuff directly or indirectly just want either your money, your body, or your acceptance of their desires.

It looks bad on Apple's part if they allow stuff like this. It will hit the news where it will be blown out of proportion and then lead to a decline in sales. So they shouldn't allow this and get why they wouldn't.

I don't have anything against porn particularly. I find it useful from time to time. But those obsessed with it seem very sad. If you need an instant access porn app, it's likely that you are a pathetic excuse for a human being. Go get laud by a real person.
But there lies the rub. The majority of people clamoring for porn apps are sex crazed teenage boys whose parents don't use controls. This is probably reason enough for apple to reject it. They don't need to be viewed as enabling under age porn addiction.

It doesn't seem relative, Safari is full of sites iPhone compatable for free. A: why purchase an App and B: if your that desperate, you have a problem
I'm not against porn, but with sites such as youporn running iPhone compatable videos, for no cost, this disscusion seems irelavent. The iPhone already has adult material for us to see.

Regardless of the application, doesn't it bother you that some self-appointed fascists are arbitrarily deciding whether or not you can see it?
Perhaps these guys should run for office in Iran.

No matter where you stand on the issue it makes sense that Apple limits this sort of thing so that we don't fill the app store with a bunch of apps that say they are one thing then do something else later. who wants to filter through a million apps to find the one they want.

Please, Please, Please Apple don't allow this. The app store is getting crammed enough as is. I can't imagine what searching for apps would be like if they allow porn in. I'm no prude and believe each to their own, if you want porn on your phone then that's up to you, but surely you could use the safari browser to find it. Apple just allow flash on the iphone and be done with it, then at least those who want to watch a bit of porn and "knock one out" during their lunch breaks can. the app store stays clean and child friendly, everyones a winner.

What's with all the crying? If you guys don't like the way Apple does business, don't buy their products. Calling a company fascists is a bit childish when it comes to this issue. You f-ing self-entitled wennies should take a trip back 20 years where we didn't have luxuries such as smart phones and internet access. Be f-ing greatful we can afford to possess such technology.
Now get out of your parent's basement, go upstairs, grab your mom's copy of Cosmo and (as Michael Jackson would say) beat it.

Nasty personal insults are no substitute for the facts. And to suppose that you know anything about my personality, age, or living situation is ludicrous.
The fact that Apple maintains absolute and centralized control of the applications for the iPhone makes them fascist by definition. The fact that they exercise that power arbitrarily, and that they have gone from ensuring compatibility and security to dictating the morality of its customers is what I find alarming.

I'm glad they pulled the app. Who wants to shift through pages and pages of porn / nudity filled apps while looking for something decent. Go to a website for that, but keep the iTunes store clean. Thank you apple.

@Bob G. I get you and I agree.
If viewing porn on my mobile device is something I want to do, why not? It's my phone.
Certainly there can be safeguards to keep "controversial" material from easy access in the app store. (like the back room in the video store)
I personally don't view porn, nudity or provocative images on my phone or anywhere, for that matter. But, I don't want anyone telling me that I can't.

You people that throw around the word fascism when describing consumer electronics seriously dilute your credibility. I understand metaphors and the purpose of exaggeration in an argument but your argument doesn't even make sense. Is Wal-Mart fascist for also taking a stance against selling media that it finds offensive? Should a company have to sell something that they aren't prepared to sell yet or they do not desire to sell because there is a willing consumer? I hate to use the word "liberal" because it is so heavily used now-a-days especially in conjunction with politics, but "liberal" is starting to define itself more clearly as meaning selfish i.e. putting ones personal interests above those around them with little or no concern of the latter. Takers and givers. These type of news posts which in turn lead to these type of arguments are fundamentally about what I just described.

im sick of people saying we cant have porn on the go, we have the technology so lets use it for admiring women, or men if you dont want to see naked people then dont download it, i dont like the stocks app yet i cannot delet just let us all have what ever we want im paying for the damn thing after all.