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Apple Rejects Drone Strike App

timothy posted about a year and a half ago | from the you'll-have-a-different-think-comin' dept.

Censorship 234

eldavojohn writes "Developer Josh Begley, a student at Clay Shirky's NYU Media Lab, created an application called Drones+ that allows users to track U.S. drone strikes on a map of Pakistan, Yemen and Somalia. Far from innovative, the app in question merely relays and positions strikes as available from the U.K.'s Bureau of Investigative Journalism. First Apple rejected the application claiming it was 'not useful or entertaining enough,' then it was rejected for hiding a corporate logo. And the latest reason for objection is that Begley's content is 'objectionable and crude' and 'that many audiences would find [it] objectionable." Begley's at a loss for how to change information on a map. He's not showing images of the drone strikes nor even graphically describing the strikes. From the end of the article, 'The basic idea was to see if he could get App Store denizens a bit more interested in the U.S.' secretive, robotic wars, with information on those wars popping up on their phones the same way an Instagram comment or retweet might. Instead, Begley's thinking about whether he'd have a better shot making the same point in the Android Market.'"

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234 comments

apple just doesn't want to touch that (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#41183887)

with a ten foot pole.

Re:apple just doesn't want to touch that (5, Insightful)

MobileTatsu-NJG (946591) | about a year and a half ago | (#41183965)

apple just doesn't want to touch that with a ten foot pole.

Yep. That's one of the downsides of the walled garden. I'm still annoyed I can't get MAME on iOS.

Re:apple just doesn't want to touch that (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#41184289)

That's one of the downsides of the walled garden.
Why? a walled garden [huffingtonpost.com] hasn't stopped Apple before [makeuseof.com] ... ;-)

Re:apple just doesn't want to touch that (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#41184749)

Fuck you.

Re:apple just doesn't want to touch that (5, Interesting)

tchuladdiass (174342) | about a year and a half ago | (#41184515)

When you write for iOS, you aren't working for yourself. You are instead working as a contractor for Apple. You are given the job of coming up with product ideas, implementing and marketing them. And you get paid a hefty commission on the sales. But as an Apple contractor, they are free to reject any idea or implementation thereof -- it has to be in line with what they would want to develop themselves.

If you think of it this way, it makes things so much easier.

Re:apple just doesn't want to touch that (1)

Black LED (1957016) | about a year and a half ago | (#41184999)

So you spend a bunch of time working on something and have Apple dismiss it out of hand because they don't like it or might potentially want to create something that competes at some point in the future. Sounds great.

MAME on IOS (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#41184663)

I'm still annoyed I can't get MAME on iOS.

There was a short window when MAME was available for IOS. I'm pretty sure that if you look hard enough and are willing to bend a few presumptions, you can still have it. I have it.

Re:apple just doesn't want to touch that (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#41184871)

> I'm still annoyed I can't get MAME on iOS.

You can.

Nobody has bothered to port it though. MAME is a huge project, the source tree is massive (+3500 files). The MAME guys are more then willing to work with someone who wants to invest the time and effort to port it to iOS properly.

What you saw a long time ago (iMAME/iMAME4ALL)- the version that was taken down- was a dirty hack on a copy of the source tree that was over a decade old (12 years to be exact). None of the ROMs compatible with that version of MAME ran in the newer versions of MAME, because the ROMs had been re-dumped and renamed umpteen times since.

The MAME guys had the iOS app pulled because it reflected badly on the project, not because of Apple's walled garden or any direct action from Apple. If you want to take the time to port a **recent** and modernized version of MAME to iOS, you're more then welcome to. That massive hack that made it into the app store was just that, and it was done by a bunch of buffoons who had absolutely no clue what they were doing (otherwise they should have used a recent version of MAME instead). The source code that was 12 years old had so many modifications and kludges applied to it that it barely resembled the original MAME source tree from back then, even though compatibility was identical.

You probably don't care though, since you're just a consumer and you want your Donkey Kong on iOS. Nevertheless, not everything you read about is because of the "walled garden".

-AC

Re:apple just doesn't want to touch that (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#41184023)

I think they're more afraid that the app will manage to get hold of an immediate report of their next operation, and the phones will all say "One drone strike on MOUNTAIN VIEW, CA launched from base in CUPERTINO, CA".

Re:apple just doesn't want to touch that (5, Insightful)

msauve (701917) | about a year and a half ago | (#41184615)

What's with all these oldthinkers? They just don't have a bellyfeel for the doubleplusfreedom Apple provides its users. They need more goodthink.

Re:apple just doesn't want to touch that (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#41184691)

I see what you did there...and Winston and I approve.

Re:apple just doesn't want to touch that (2)

fm6 (162816) | about a year and a half ago | (#41184835)

Jeez, dude, if you can't learn to speak Newspeak properly, I'm going to report you to the Thought Police. You need to get rid of grammatical ornamentation and expressive subtlety. Try

Why oldthink? Apple give doubleplusfreedom. Be goodthinkful.

There is no problem with this (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#41183921)

Apple is, and should be, free to prohibit any content they want on their store. It's their store, we shouldn't force them to add stuff they don't want.

The problem here is the locked down devices. You have no other way of installing things on an iPhone. Which is precisely why I don't own one.

Re:There is no problem with this (4, Informative)

aristotle-dude (626586) | about a year and a half ago | (#41183953)

Apple is, and should be, free to prohibit any content they want on their store. It's their store, we shouldn't force them to add stuff they don't want.

The problem here is the locked down devices. You have no other way of installing things on an iPhone. Which is precisely why I don't own one.

Solution: Use Safari Mobile.

Re:There is no problem with this (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#41184029)

Mod this guy up (The one that said "Solution: Use Safari Mobile."). It might sidestep "the debate" but it is THE practical answer.

Re:There is no problem with this (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#41184207)

Not to mention reaches a broader audience.

Unless this guy thinks he can charge for it. In which case, fuck him.

Re:There is no problem with this (3, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#41184733)

Yes, because charging for work you do is so wrong.

Re:There is no problem with this (3, Informative)

devilspgd (652955) | about a year and a half ago | (#41184475)

I've yet to see anything resembling a usable map interface implemented in Safari Mobile. Even Google's is clunky and painful to use vs a native app, so suggesting "Just use Safari" doesn't really scale until it can create as functional an interface as what native apps can do.

Re:There is no problem with this (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#41183967)

We as smartphone users have every right to pressure Apple to accept this application or any other application. We can decide where to spend our money based on how Apple treats us in meeting our demands.

Re:There is no problem with this (2)

Dishevel (1105119) | about a year and a half ago | (#41184447)

No you can't. :)

Re:There is no problem with this (1)

Guy Harris (3803) | about a year and a half ago | (#41184841)

No you can't. :)

If you're referring to "We can decide where to spend our money based on how Apple treats us in meeting our demands.", are you claiming that smartphone users are forced to purchase iPhones?

Re:There is no problem with this (4, Insightful)

Dishevel (1105119) | about a year and a half ago | (#41184943)

I thought that I was pointing out that there are 2 types of iPhone users.
Those too stupid to know that they have no choice and those that made the choice to not have one.

Re:There is no problem with this (1)

an unsound mind (1419599) | about a year and a half ago | (#41184555)

And this affects me none as an iOS user - and I'm sure most iOS users have given it even less thought.

Apple wishes to keep this software out of their market as a CYA strategy. This is fine with me. They also keep emulators out for the same reason, which I'm less thrilled about but I can understand their position.

If I felt some other platform offered me superior choices, I would use that platform. As it is, I prefer iOS, because I value convenience over software freedom. My communications remain unimpaired by Apple.

Re:There is no problem with this (2)

cffrost (885375) | about a year and a half ago | (#41184729)

This is fine with me. They also keep emulators out for the same reason, which I'm less thrilled about but I can understand their position.

Which is: Apple right behind you, and you bent over and paying for the privilege. I understand Apple's position too, but I can't understand your position.

Re:There is no problem with this (3, Insightful)

geekoid (135745) | about a year and a half ago | (#41184735)

Apple denying what you have an option to use affects you. Most iOS users don't know about it, so yeah they probably didn't think about it.

Denying this app IS impairing communication. Sure, it's not a type of communication you would use, but next time it might be.
Funny thin is, My Galaxy does many thing more convenient the the iPhone does.

No that you should change, but don't kid yourself either.

Re:There is no problem with this (4, Insightful)

devilspgd (652955) | about a year and a half ago | (#41184451)

Apple is, and should be, free to prohibit any content they want on their store.

Absolutely!

It's their store, we shouldn't force them to add stuff they don't want.

Nobody is forcing anything. Yet. For the same reason that Apple has a right to carry (or not carry) whatever they like, I have the right to complain about it.

The problem here is the locked down devices. You have no other way of installing things on an iPhone.

And this is the reason I'm actually alright with forcing Apple to carry certain things that they might not otherwise want to carry. If the App Store rules weren't such a moving target, I'd have less of a complaint, but the fact that limitations on what software I can install on my device are added after the initial purchase of my device is a bit of a problem, at least to me.

Re:There is no problem with this (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#41184845)

"Apple is, and should be, free to prohibit any content they want on their store. It's their store, we shouldn't force them to add stuff they don't want."

That is a true statement. Another true statement is that we, as consumers, as actual and potential customers, are just as free to criticize and comment on Apple's decisions about what they include in their store.

I happen to disagree with Apple's decision. The app seems to do nothing more than aggregate a very specific set of news stories and alert the user to those stories being published. I don't see how that's any different from an app that alerts users about news stories related to celebrities or sports teams and I'm sure the Apple store has those. I think that Apple should be applying a uniform standard (which they claim they are doing) and it hasn't done so for this app.

Before you claim that I am forcing them to accept content they do not want, keep in mind that no criticism I made changes their right to deny the app.

Legal right != good decision (2)

JOrgePeixoto (853808) | about a year and a half ago | (#41184847)

Apple is, and should be, free to prohibit any content they want on their store. It's their store, we shouldn't force them to add stuff they don't want.

There is a large difference between "I have a legal right to do it" and "It is good to do it".

I have a legal right to say black people are inferior. Does not mean it is a good idea.

Apple has the legal right to censor political/philosophical/religious ideas (see [1]), but at the same time we have a right and maybe even a duty to boycott it.

1. http://www.manhattandeclaration.org/the-movement/latest-updates/10-12-23/Apple_Says_No_to_Manhattan_Declaration_App_2_0-1562643600.aspx [manhattandeclaration.org]

app vs act(uality ) (5, Insightful)

tidepool (137349) | about a year and a half ago | (#41183939)

If the 'app' is rated as objectionable and 'crude'', what does that make the actions themselves? Are we all so content as a society to hide our heads under our pillows, all the while chanting 'freedom in the USA!'?

I think the guy had a valid point -- If the app exists or doesn't exist, it doesn't change the data points that are being created (Monthly/Weekly/Daily?) nor the map itself.

Correlation is not causation - Apple should know this.

Re:app vs act(uality ) (4, Insightful)

mark_elf (2009518) | about a year and a half ago | (#41184109)

Head under pillows, going to the Apple store to buy more iPads, not questioning the consensus, super-consuming reality we live in. I turned on my facebook today and saw all my friends got new iphones so I went down and got one too! Drone strikes keep us safe, don't ask too many questions, don't rock the boat. Obama or Romney, Apple or Microsoft, Facebook or Google+. What do drone strikes have to do with it?

--------------

Posted from a 17" macbook pro.

Re:app vs act(uality ) (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#41184519)

Plus by making more and more of the public realm private they can use the private property excuse to suppress dissent. "It is Apple's product, too bad!"

Re:app vs act(uality ) (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#41184715)

Why do we need to know that you "Posted from a 17" macbook pro." ?

Does it make the fonts look different on my screen or something?

Re:app vs act(uality ) (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#41184823)

No, it just makes him think his shriveled little mushroom dick is bigger.

Re:app vs act(uality ) (4, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#41184123)

Apple's next gadget: iPillow. It censors your news so you don't have to feel like you should do something.

Re:app vs act(uality ) (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#41184215)

Oooh...oooh...oooh! Does it also muffle your screams when you bite it? We can't risk embarrassing big bro by drawing attention!

Re:app vs act(uality ) (1)

fustakrakich (1673220) | about a year and a half ago | (#41184459)

It's just not good business, on many fronts, to show people the consequences of their vote. It could create an atmosphere of discontent and damage the reputation of the state.

Re:app vs act(uality ) (2)

fm6 (162816) | about a year and a half ago | (#41184875)

Whatever their official reasons, I doubt that this is about security or good taste or anything like that. Apple simply doesn't like controversy. That's why they wouldn't allow a Bush Leaves count down clock.

Of course they rejected it! (5, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#41183949)

A Drone Strike app which can't initiate strikes is like an email client which can't send email.

Apple deserves our thanks for keeping unfinished apps out of the App Store.

Exactly (5, Funny)

Tim Ward (514198) | about a year and a half ago | (#41184321)

The problem is of course the current namby-pamby nanny-state commie liberal president you've got, who insists on signing every drone death warrant personally.

A real red blooded conservative president, who upheld the US citizen's right to bear arms properly, would allow users of the app to kill foreigners with drones as easily as they are currently allowed to kill fellow Americans with handguns.

Re:Exactly (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#41184343)

Why should I need a handgun to kill a fellow American? Especially if they're not on the do-not-kill list!

Re:Exactly (2)

sartin (238198) | about a year and a half ago | (#41184639)

would allow users of the app to kill foreigners with drones as easily as they are currently allowed to kill fellow Americans with handguns.

I assume that would be through an in-app purchase? What an awesome way to work on deficit reduction.

First Mistake: making it political (0)

black6host (469985) | about a year and a half ago | (#41183995)

I'm not surprised that Apple has rejected an App that has the purpose of getting people interested in the author's own political agenda. Not that I agree or disagree with it what he's trying to do. Just that Angry Birds may be angry, but pigs aren't representing countries, political affiliations or sensitive topics in general.

I'm not saying there is not a place for this type of App. But think about it, Apples App store is frequently referred to as a "Walled Garden" It's not a place to rock the boat so to speak. Regardless of whether or not that's "right" doesn't matter. It's Apple's garden, and they can do as they please.

Now personally, I won't buy an Apple product that walls me in from information that could potentially be enlightening to me. And I'm sure Apple doesn't care.

Re:First Mistake: making it political (2)

JustOK (667959) | about a year and a half ago | (#41184161)

The pigs represent THE MAN, man.

Re:First Mistake: making it political (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#41184251)

To me the pigs represent you.

Re:First Mistake: making it political (1)

marcello_dl (667940) | about a year and a half ago | (#41184449)

If apple censored every other political app, one could argue that apple does just like a random webhost who doesn't allow pornography. If apple lets some political apps through and this one gets blocked, it's like a society where female must wear a burqa and males are exempted.

I am not surprised either, anyway.

Re:First Mistake: making it political (1)

devilspgd (652955) | about a year and a half ago | (#41184517)

I'm not surprised that Apple has rejected an App that has the purpose of getting people interested in the author's own political agenda.

This is true, Apple never approves applications that have the purpose of fostering a particular political agenda. I bet if Mitt Romney's campaign submitted an Amercia app, it would be rejected promptly.

Re:First Mistake: making it political (2)

Knuckles (8964) | about a year and a half ago | (#41184683)

I'm not surprised that Apple has rejected an App that has the purpose of getting people interested in the author's own political agenda.

There's a Mitt Romney app (and other politicians), apps for newspapers and TV news channels galore, and lots and lots of other apps that are about one political agenda or other. How is this one different?

Re:First Mistake: making it political (5, Insightful)

cffrost (885375) | about a year and a half ago | (#41184877)

I'm not surprised that Apple has rejected an App that has the purpose of getting people interested in the author's own political agenda.

There's a Mitt Romney app (and other politicians), apps for newspapers and TV news channels galore, and lots and lots of other apps that are about one political agenda or other. How is this one different?

This one is made by some filthy peasant... a mere citizen. The others were submitted by corporate partners, job creators, you know, the real American people.

patents would be better (2, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#41184039)

I want an app that pops up a map pointer to each court that Apple wages battle in.

Or he could... you know... (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#41184043)

Put it on a website!

Why does everything have to be an app these days? If you just want to display information, isn't that exactly what the Web was designed for? Why turn it into something that only a minority of your potential audience can make use of?

We already went through this whole proprietary wrappers nonsense back in the early days of the Internet. I thought we learned our lesson. Apparently not.

End rant.

Oh yeah, and get off my lawn!

Re:Or he could... you know... (2)

Githaron (2462596) | about a year and a half ago | (#41184243)

Does iOS or Android even have the native ability to add website shortcuts to the home screens or application menu? If they did, I think people might be more willing to use them.

Re:Or he could... you know... (3, Informative)

newcastlejon (1483695) | about a year and a half ago | (#41184365)

Does iOS or Android even have the native ability to add website shortcuts to the home screens or application menu?

I can't speak for Android, but in Safari you tap the icon next to bookmarks then "Add to Home Screen".

Re:Or he could... you know... (3, Informative)

Deliveranc3 (629997) | about a year and a half ago | (#41184985)

Works fine on Android too. Just hold and select bookmark. Like any other App shortcut or widget.

Re:Or he could... you know... (1)

tlhIngan (30335) | about a year and a half ago | (#41184393)

Does iOS or Android even have the native ability to add website shortcuts to the home screens or application menu? If they did, I think people might be more willing to use them.

Not sure about Android, but iOS definitely has web apps [lifehacker.com] - it was there even before the App Store was around. It's effectively a bookmark, but I believe it runs a separate instance so do it right and it can feel all "native".

In fact, you can pin any web site to the home screen.

Apple has always suggested that apps that don't want to be approved be done this way. I'm not sure how far Apple has gone with their proposals to have sensor capabilities (accellerometer, gyros, location, etc) available via HTML5 so they can be used by webapps...

I would assume Android has similar functionality.

Re:Or he could... you know... (1)

devilspgd (652955) | about a year and a half ago | (#41184609)

iOS does, but it's severely hobbled. When you attempt to return to the app (via fast-app switching or the home-screen-icon) you get to see where you left off for a couple seconds, then it returns to the main URL for that web-app.

This makes it a huge pain to actually use this functionality since if you save, say, /., then instead of being able to finish the comment you were writing, you'll end up at the /. homepage again.

Re:Or he could... you know... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#41184789)

You must be holding or doing it wrong.

Apple are the masters of UI design, you dont have any right to state that their system is not perfect as it is made by Apple.

If it doesnt seem perfect, then it is simply you who is in the wrong. Remember, humans are not perfect, but Apple is.

Re:Or he could... you know... (1)

Wordplay (54438) | about a year and a half ago | (#41184869)

It's because it's the shortcut equivalent of launching Safari with a link. You see the old page for a moment because the UIWebView (embedded Safari) wrapper displaying the page is still in memory, then it navigates to the new.

Does Android do this better?

Re:Or he could... you know... (1)

guspasho (941623) | about a year and a half ago | (#41184267)

Apps are designed to the OS, websites are designed to standards. Apps are going to be inherently superior. If anything, the app is more direct and it's Safari and the web interface that is the obnoxious wrapper.

Also, you get App Store visibility.

Re:Or he could... you know... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#41184417)

It would be an app for the reason mentioned in the quote: so the user would have 'information on those wars popping up on their phones the same way an Instagram comment or retweet might' - an app allows push much easier than a website, which is, by nature, pull.

Re:Or he could... you know... (1)

dodex1k (2712675) | about a year and a half ago | (#41184897)

Hopefully people will see start to see that the same things apps do can be accomplished just as effectively by websites. For every single app in the Apple app store, there is probably a corresponding website that does the same thing. And it doesn't need to be approved by anyone.

There's an app for that...
And there's a website too.
And it's free.

obviously (4, Funny)

LodCrappo (705968) | about a year and a half ago | (#41184103)

The big new "magical" feature in the upcoming iPhone 5 is the ability to track drone strikes.

"objectionable" content.... (5, Insightful)

wierd_w (1375923) | about a year and a half ago | (#41184133)

In other words, this guy has discovered first hand what happens when content gets censored on grounds of being "objectionable."

It doesn't matter what the subject is, SOMEONE will find it objectionable.

Evolution? Creationists.
Fluffy Kittens? PETA.
Babies? Malthists
Picking flowers? Botanical conservationists.
Vaccination? Antivac-ers.
Birth control? Catholics
Lipstick? Orthodox muslims
Etc.

If the metric for rejection was "objectionable", then the only way for apple's store to remain open is if it has nothing to sell.

Rather, Apple has taken the shister path, and has conflated "unpopular" with "objectionable", since the real application of that word would exclude all products.

As such, anything sociologically or politically unpopular, regardless of factual content, is banned.

Re:"objectionable" content.... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#41184231)

but they aren't censoring the content. - they just aren't facilitating it's distribution.
The guy could make a web site with all the same info and you could view it
just fine on your mobile safari browser on the phone. And you could sign up to get tweets
or SMS messages and that would work fine. This would have been a perfect choice and
would have worked everywhere. The "App" was useless and provided no actual benefit to any
user - it is merely a political agenda awareness tool. (an agenda that I actually generally agree with btw)
If I ran a coffee house and high an open mike night for singers, and my clientele was of mixed political opinions
and someone wanted to come in an just rant against Obama (or rant about any other political figure/party/activity)
that I knew would just piss off my customers I would also ban that guy from speaking on my stage, but if he spoke
in a park somewhere I wouldn't refuse service to him.

Re:"objectionable" content.... (4, Insightful)

wierd_w (1375923) | about a year and a half ago | (#41184407)

No contest. However, nobody would be forcing people to install this app. The utility provided is the centrality it offers as a data aggregator. The data is already in the wild. The issue here is that political apps are just another item in that list. SOMEONE will find the very idea of a politically motivated app to be objectionable.

This is like porn. Some people want it, and pay money for it. Others find it objectionable. Rather than create a dedicated "restricted" section in the app store for such items (political apps, pornographic items, etc) apple has determined its own set of "decency", and "objectional" metrics which are poorly defined and purposefully ambiguous. The language used can be used to exclude any product, including fluffy kittens.

It is one thing to say "I don't want to sell porn." It is entirely another to say "I am the only store in town, I actively destroy rival stores, and I don't want you to be buying porn because it is dirty, dirty filth."

Getting such things on an idevice is a lot like buying crack; you have to use methods that are less than reputable or proper to get them. In some cases, apple may brick your device for posession.

Simply because the app is political in nature does not mean that nobody would want it, or that nobody would find it desirable or useful. The fact that it is unpopular with the mainstream popular culture should not be grounds for exclusion. It should be "restricted", so people who don't want to see the add don't have to unless they actively look for it, but it shouldn't be banned.

Re:"objectionable" content.... (1)

MobileTatsu-NJG (946591) | about a year and a half ago | (#41184977)

If the metric for rejection was "objectionable", then the only way for apple's store to remain open is if it has nothing to sell.

Okay, let's not get silly here. We all know that their idea of objectionable is if they can picture this turning into a PR nightmare. For example: They didn't want the baby-shaking game on their store. They didn't want some news station running an article like: "Do you approve of your kids playing a game where you shake babies to death? Why doesn't Apple stop this sort of thing?"

You're right that it's subjective, that sucks balls. But, no, it's not that hard to work out what's likely to get banned. They're not worried about offending anybody, they're worried about having to pay extra to their PR consultants.

Not a government website! (2, Informative)

uslurper (459546) | about a year and a half ago | (#41184143)

The description of the article is misleading..
"available from the U.K.'s Bureau of Investigative Journalism."

-makes it sound like it is a government-sponsored website when it is fact a privately owned and operated site.

from the site:
"About the Bureau
The Bureau of Investigative Journalism is a not-for-profit organisation based at City University, London. The Bureau bolsters original journalism by producing high-quality investigations for press and broadcast media with the aim of educating the public and the media on both the realities of today’s world and the value of honest reporting."

"Donations
  The Bureau was established with a £2 million donation from the David & Elaine Potter Foundation. We have also received funding from the Andrew Wainwright Reform Trust, and the Green Park Foundation (based in the US).
Media income
  We have received part payment for our stories from the BBC, Channel4, Al Jazeera, ITN, The Mail on Sunday, The Sunday Times, The Guardian and The Daily Telegraph.
Non media income
  We have received monies from Oxfam.
City University
The Bureau receives subsidised office space and facilities from City University. The Bureau has an ongoing relationship with City University’s Department of Journalism which includes offering work experience and internships to its journalism students. Senior members of the Bureau’s staff guest lecture at the department.
Google
The Bureau receives free email and document-sharing services from Google.
Simons Muirhead & Burton Solicitors
The Bureau has a relationship with Simons Muirhead & Burton, one of London’s leading law firms. The firm provides a comprehensive range of legal services particularly to those in the media. It advises the Bureau on a wide range of legal issues, with some of the work done on a pro bono basis.
Managing Editor
Iain Overton is employed by the Bureau of Investigative Journalism. His annual salary is just under £65,000 with an additional pension provision on top. He has no political or commercial affiliations."
also misleading from the description:

" the app in question merely relays and positions strikes as available"
-the app writer may not have permission to relay this information:
also from the site:
"Steal our stories
The Bureau of Investigative Journalism is an independent, not-for-profit organisation that carries out research in the public interest. Unless otherwise stated our articles and graphics can be republished without charge. However, there are a few things we ask you to bear in mind:
- If republishing online please link to us and include all of the links from our story.
- Our material cannot be sold separately.
- Photographs and video cannot be republished without specific permission from the licence holder.
- If quoting from our research the Bureau of Investigative Journalism must be credited.
The Bureau is licenced under Creative Commons, which provides the legal details. "

Re:Not a government website! (1)

SirSlud (67381) | about a year and a half ago | (#41184357)

What on earth would a government be doing running a bureau of investigative journalism? Investigative journalism exists *precisely to* enhance the transparency of governments, companies, and individuals who don't want to be.

Re:Not a government website! (1)

Arker (91948) | about a year and a half ago | (#41184821)

No one but you read that and thought it had anything to do with a government agency. Investigative journalism, look it up.

he just now considers android? (4, Insightful)

LodCrappo (705968) | about a year and a half ago | (#41184145)

"Begley's thinking about whether he'd have a better shot making the same point in the Android Market.'"

He'd be allowed to try. Considering there are considerably more Android users than iThing users, he'd also have a bigger impact if his app was popular.

Freedom: it's not really so bad, despite what Apple would have you believe.

Re:he just now considers android? (1)

timeOday (582209) | about a year and a half ago | (#41184671)

Actually I'd say Apple's censorship is causing the app to have a bigger impact than it ever would have otherwise, even if people never see it. (The app itself would be relatively static and not that exciting to use.)

Re:he just now considers android? (1, Interesting)

rk (6314) | about a year and a half ago | (#41184763)

Interesting idea... take it a step further: could it be that Apple is secretly wearing a white hat here, "banning" the app for a few specious reasons in an attempt to publicize it through outrage, only to recant a few days later? How many of us would never have heard of this app if it were not for this? A way of advertising it without advertising it, perhaps?

It is 'objectionable and crude' (4, Informative)

fustakrakich (1673220) | about a year and a half ago | (#41184153)

to question or challenge US authority. He should be grateful his house isn't on the map.

Re:It is 'objectionable and crude' (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#41184279)

Give it time.... Give it time...

List of No Bullsh*t Pastebins Usable Via Tor-v.0.4 (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#41184201)

http://pastebin.com/YEbM3Brv [pastebin.com]

Pastebins which are usable via Tor and do not require javascript to use

WHEN YOU NEED TO POST SH*T RIGHT NOW, BEHIND Tor.....
The List of No Bullsh*t Pastebins Usable Via Tor is here for you!

Is there a definitive list of blocked apps? (4, Interesting)

Jah-Wren Ryel (80510) | about a year and a half ago | (#41184287)

Is anyone keeping track of the apps that Apple has forbidden from the appstore?

I used to be reduced to pointing at the bouncy-boobs type apps (shake the phone and watch a girl's tits bounce) until recently when a friend had to deal with an abusive spouse.

I went looking for an iphone app that records video and audio with the screen turned off - she wanted evidence of him being violent - but as far as I could tell apple doesn't permit such apps. There are some available in the jail-break version of the appstore, but jail-breaking is not an option for the typical battered woman.

Then we went looking for an app that would automatically forward all received text messages to an email address, because the guy likes to send threatening texts and it would be helpful to automatically archive them. Again no go - apparently you have to cut-n-paste them one at a time or rely on a significant level of technical expertise to manually extract them from the icloud(?) backups of the phone.

phoneview (1)

osssmkatz (734824) | about a year and a half ago | (#41184709)

Phoneview (mac) from ecamm software will archive voicemails and texts, or she can drop her iphone off at the police station.. they can get it off. I believe there's one called iphone explorer for the PC Good luck.

Re:Is there a definitive list of blocked apps? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#41184815)

Domestic violence: there's NOT an app for that

I went looking for an iphone app that records video and audio with the screen turned off - she wanted evidence of him being violent - but as far as I could tell apple doesn't permit such apps.

You can buy spy cams from ebay

Then we went looking for an app that would automatically forward all received text messages to an email address, because the guy likes to send threatening texts and it would be helpful to automatically archive them

Helpful how? Just back up the data from the phone.

I don't want to defend Apple but the first use has serious privacy implications and the second (if the process can be hidden) is basically malware. If you know someone with a developer account who is willing to help, you can write the apps and install to her phone using the developer cert.

while (0, Flamebait)

geekoid (135745) | about a year and a half ago | (#41184325)

I don't see why they should pull this app(based on the description in the summary) but this:
" interested in the U.S.' secretive, robotic wars,"

wow, What a loon.

CCCP (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#41184335)

In Soviet Union Apple bites YOU.

Truth is objectionable (1)

ukemike (956477) | about a year and a half ago | (#41184401)

I think we can safely conclude that Apple considers journalism that falls outside of the narrow range of MSNBCNNBBCBSFOX to be objectionable.

bogus reason (5, Insightful)

PopeRatzo (965947) | about a year and a half ago | (#41184411)

And the latest reason for objection is that Begley's content is 'objectionable and crude' and 'that many audiences would find [it] objectionable.

There are "many audiences" that would find the content on the Adult Swim app "objectionable and crude", too, but Apple doesn't have a problem with that.

Here's the reason walled gardens are bad for you: Because you don't get to choose how to use your own device.

Re:bogus reason (2)

cffrost (885375) | about a year and a half ago | (#41184573)

There are "many audiences" that would find the content on the Adult Swim app "objectionable and crude", too, but Apple doesn't have a problem with that.

Well that's made by a corporate partner, so that's different, you see? Same deal with Playboy.

Here's the reason walled gardens are bad for you: Because you don't get to choose how to use your own device.

Terror talk, eh? Clearly you need to think different harder.

Re:bogus reason (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#41184719)

Same deal with Playboy.
Because you don't get to choose how to use your own device.
Clearly you need to think different harder.

Sorry my mind wondered, what were we talking about again?

pick and choose (1)

geoffaus (623283) | about a year and a half ago | (#41184423)

ifart should have been rejected too for some of those reasons. Obviously apple worries that the gubberment wont like this hence the ban - dont remind the citizens that their tax $$ are being used in ways they probably wont like- just keep everyone calm and consuming

In soviet russia... (1)

Msdose (867833) | about a year and a half ago | (#41184433)

In Soviet Russia, the godless religion of political correctness censors your apps.

Objectionable and Crude? (1)

jc42 (318812) | about a year and a half ago | (#41184539)

Begley's content is 'objectionable and crude' ... 'many audiences would find [it] objectionable."

It's, uh, "interesting" to read of this description being used while Apple's App Store sells the iFart [apple.com] app.

Or maybe they really haven't received any complaints about iFart. Ya think?

(And is it available for Android yet?)

This is campaign season (well, it always is) (1)

fustakrakich (1673220) | about a year and a half ago | (#41184561)

The government could very well see this as a negative reflection on both sides of the ruling party. They would have every reason to put the squeeze on Apple to minimize this,and instead recommend that the app indicates where a fluffy kitten is born with little pink hearts.

Secretive Robotic Wars? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#41184571)

I think that the app ought to the approved and all, but "Secretive"? It seems like not a single day goes by without news of the use of drones... that is hardly secretive...

Re:Secretive Robotic Wars? (1)

jc42 (318812) | about a year and a half ago | (#41184625)

Yeah, somehow when an incoming object explodes and injures or kills a bunch of people (or worse, destroys property ;-), it seems to be difficult to keep the fact secret. The friends and relatives of the victims have a way of noticing the event, and it's hard to prevent them from talking about it.

Why does it have to be an app? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#41184595)

Why not just a website with a map? What's this obsession with apps?

Re:Why does it have to be an app? (1)

Spy Handler (822350) | about a year and a half ago | (#41184889)

Perhaps you didn't get the memo. Apps are trendy now. Apps are what AOL Keyword was in '98. Things that would work better as a simple webpage need to be released as an app.

Welcome to the App Store (5, Insightful)

Paul Slocum (598127) | about a year and a half ago | (#41184723)

I'm an iOS developer, and keep in mind when you read this that there is an entire industry of developers whose business plan is to submit pointless novelty/spam games and apps to the App Store as fast as humanly possible. Because of this, Apple has made it so you can't submit any app that simply aggregates web content or has limited functionality, and I think it's good for the App Store to impose this. On the iOS forums I follow, people get rejected constantly for simple aggregator apps like this.

So being a bit of a collector of these spam apps and having seen a lot of them, I don't really blame Apple for not being able to tell the different between those spam apps and this -- which maybe deserves a bit more consideration than the average spam aggregator app. I blame the app spammers who have wrecked the system, not Apple.

And anyway, geez, just make the project a webpage and twitter account and it has the same effect and you aren't limited to iOS. Oh, but then it's not as "cool" because it's not an iPhone app!

Integrated app suggestion. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#41184935)

Just hook drone strike update into angry birds and have the birds do what birds do best on the map. Then have the guano spots morf into apple logos. Integrate it online with a multiplayer version and presto a hit.

Fuck Apple (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#41185003)

Have I said "FUCK APPLE" yet today? Yes I have, and I'll say it again.

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