Is this the most offensive iPhone app of the year?

Is this the most offensive iPhone app of the year?

Summary: Gratuitous rant: Someone at Apple clearly missed their morning coffee, because they let through the 'most offensive app' of the year: a 'cure' for gay people.

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TOPICS: Mobility
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"Of the year"; I know it's only March, but I have one hell of a bee in my bonnet on this one.

Exodus International, a Christian ministry organisation, wrote and published an application on the Apple App Store, which 'teaches' gay people and "those struggling with unwanted same-sex attraction to live a life congruent with biblical teaching".

It's an anti-gay application, essentially, teaching those who are gay how not to be gay.

Not only is it entirely repugnant, disrespectful and just plain wrong to attempt to 'teach' people not to be gay, it is equally disgusting that it was published to the mobile market through application store mechanisms.

However, I don't blame Apple per se for this all but inevitable cock up. With over 300,000 applications on the App Store, it is nearly impossible to guarantee that all are going to be well behaved and not cause offence. Someone at Apple clearly missed their coffee that morning.

Apple did delete the application from the App Store citing reasons that it was "offensive to large groups of people", but whether or not the 150,000 people petititoning against the application had any effect it is unclear.

Besides, Apple isn't homophobic. Why else would they sport the rainbow flag on one of their corporate logos?

Let's just get something straight. I shouldn't even have to say this, but I'm truly glad that the very vast majority of our respective societies agree. There is nothing, even remotely wrong with being gay. Not even a teensy bit.

Don't get me wrong. I'm all for freedom of speech. It's partly one of the reasons why I'm a journalist. But anyone who disagrees with the above statement, you need to have a word with yourself.

But the figures show only 16,000 downloads with 'only 500 negative ratings'. I would be happy to bet money on two significant contributing factors to this: the vast majority of people were shocked and equally curious enough to actually see what kind of foul content was in this application, and only a small minority could be arsed to actually leave a negative rating before deleting the application.

Figures mean nothing, unless you can prove what people mean by them. I can only hypothesise, but it's my true hope that the human condition follows suit with my theory, otherwise we're all pretty much bloody doomed.

</rant>

Topic: Mobility

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40 comments
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  • Alternate reason: Sample selection bias

    Maybe the reason it has so (relatively) few negative reviews is because the people who would even look for this app in the first place are the people who would be interested in such an app.<br><br>Given the number of downloads, that's probably not even one percent of the iP(hone/od/ad) base (and that's even factoring in people who own multiple devices). The unfortunate thing is that you're going to have people who believe these things (that you can change whom people love/are attracted to), and you can only hope to educate them (or at least their children) and minimize the damage they can do.
    Third of Five
  • RE: Is this the most offensive iPhone app of the year?

    So you're ranting about an app that (granted) should have never made it on the app store, but was removed days ago once caught?

    Weak.
    samalie
  • It's quite possible

    that the person working at Apple who let this pass is homophobic him/herself. Which goes to show you, the human element in app approval is what makes the whole idea less than perfect. Everybody has an agenda, and it may not coincide with their employer's or their customers' needs.
    Michael Kelly
  • RE: Is this the most offensive iPhone app of the year?

    How about an app that teaches you how to be gay... there has to be equal time given right?! ;)
    hjenkins1
    • I just have to bite.....

      @hjenkins1

      Sorry, I can't help myself... but if you own an IPHONE in the first place.... well... you probably won't need the app you mentioned... The phone speaks for itself. :)
      rock06r
  • Freedom of speech

    "Dont get me wrong. Im all for freedom of speech. Its partly one of the reasons why Im a journalist. But anyone who disagrees with the above statement, you need to have a word with yourself."<br><br>So, you're all for freedom of speech, so long as the speaker agrees with you. Nice.
    SFDC_Guy
    • RE: Is this the most offensive iPhone app of the year?

      @SalesforceGuru I know, ironic isn't it?
      zwhittaker
      • RE: Is this the most offensive iPhone app of the year?

        @zwhittaker That's what truly defines you as a liberal - you really can't see the incongruity of your position.
        aureolin
  • Remainder

    Thanks for reminding me why I don't want to buy an iPhone/Pad/Touch...

    This whole censorship bothers me too much, if they want to spend their time & money to write something that is optionally downloadable and run (and offensive), so be it.. they have their dam right to do it, as well as the rest of the people have their dam right to choose their partners freely.
    gzkyyl
    • RE: Is this the most offensive iPhone app of the year?

      @gzkyyl Come on. Censorship bothers you? Then you must live in a cave without TV, Radio or internet... Censorship is everywhere in the corporate world. Stop being a hater.
      AFV
      • Let's just hope....

        @AFV

        He doesn't live in North Korea, China, Libya, or any of those other hell-holes where someone in government thinks they know better and have the power to enforce their ideas on everyone else. Hey... that DOES sound a lot like the Apple App-store, doesn't it??!
        rock06r
  • RE: Is this the most offensive iPhone app of the year?

    My question is why did it take so long to remove the app? Why did it take 150,000 petitioners and over a week to remove? Was it so Apple would be in the headlines for a week then prove they're righteous by removing it? This thing smells opportunistic by Apple on the backs of homosexuals.
    AFV
  • Slippery Slope

    Everyone agrees that this was distasteful and needed to go. My question is what do you do with an app that offends most people? What about 50% or 49% of the people?
    TJWJ
    • What about 1?

      @TJWJ
      rock06r
      • Please define &quot;everyone&quot; while you're at it

        @TJWJ
        [i]Everyone agrees that this was distasteful and needed to go. [/i]
        klumper
  • RE: Is this the most offensive iPhone app of the year?

    Who cares! Even the nazis and klan are allowed to gather in the USA. It is a civil right.
    If you dont like the app, don't buy it. I hate how apple decides what is good or bad for me. I love my iphone but they are one creepy company. Wont even give me flash!
    robrickshaw
    • RE: Is this the most offensive iPhone app of the year?

      @robrickshaw You're right, and I agree. I think what's important to remember, is that while there are arseholes in the world - like the Nazi's and the KKK - freedom of speech and expression (perhaps unfortunately) works both ways. Sure, you can walk down the street without being persecuted, but it also means you can piss off the entire world by burning a Qur'an. It's a strange logic, but I guess it's better that it exists than doesn't - if one had to pick a side.
      zwhittaker
  • This is a non issue

    This stuff is so 10 years ago
    even my elderly, baptist father-in-law is willing to accept gay people these days
    zmud
    • RE: Is this the most offensive iPhone app of the year?

      @zmud And good for him!
      zwhittaker
    • RE: Is this the most offensive iPhone app of the year?

      @zmud Many CHristians are homophobic only because they don't have a clue, and were taught by other homophobes... Jesus accepts all people... even if its said that homosexuality is a sin... so is 20 million other things that "straight" people do every day, so they are no less sinful, and the homosexual is no more vile an offender as the heterosexual, and Jesus loves them both.
      doh123