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Flattr calls Apple an ‘app dictatorship’

Posted: , by Charlene S.

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Flattr calls Apple an ‘app dictatorship’
Micro-payment service Flattr was cited as the reason for the latest App Store eviction and the company isn’t going down without a fight, even going as far as saying Apple exhibits monopolistic behavior.

The issue all stems from a denial of an update of the third-party podcasting app, Instacast. The app had featured Flattr integration since February, but on May 6, Apple rejected an update citing the following violation:

21.2 The collection of donations must be done via a web site in Safari or an SMS
Instead of being able to use the one-click button to Flattr a podcast, Apple said the button must send the user from the app to Safari to handle the actual Flattr. Apple said, “We understand that directing your user outside of your app may not be the user experience you prefer to offer your users. However it is a common experience in a variety of iOS apps.” In short, the classic ‘everybody’s doing it’ clause.

Flattr creators Peter Sunde and Linus Olsson say that the problem lies in Apple’s misunderstanding of how Flattr works. They argue that money does not actually change hands when someone clicks a Flattr button; rather it is a prepaid service that works the same way as a bunch of other apps that have been approved by Apple.

Much of their gripe is also related to how Apple handles the entire process. Olsson said, “When you get a rejection you can submit further information to Apple, which we did for Instacast — but we have no clue if they’ve even read it.”

Ultimately in the case of Instacast, Flattr integration was removed completely to get critical updates out to its customers while the two companies attempt to work with Apple to resolve the issue.

Sunde, who has tussled with the law quite a few times in his past position as one of the minds behind The Pirate Bay, says he feels that he has “been handed a sentence without ever really understanding what the evidence was against him.”

“We have no clue. It’s like a jury that judges you but doesn’t explain why,” he said. “It’s an app dictatorship, or a monopoly. The problem is that we’re centralizing all of our communications… big corporates say they want a free market, but they really want to lock people up. It’s not just Apple: Google is going this way, Facebook is definitely going this way.”

source: Flattr Blog via Gigaom

17 Comments
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posted on 29 May 2012, 13:00 3

1. shy2papa (Posts: 211; Member since: 23 Jan 2010)


I totally agree

posted on 29 May 2012, 13:01 5

2. ilia1986 (unregistered)


That's true

posted on 29 May 2012, 13:04 1

3. jmoita2 (Posts: 930; Member since: 23 Dec 2011)


Even Amazon gets bullied by those megalomaniacs at Apple.

posted on 29 May 2012, 13:09 2

4. JeffdaBeat (unregistered)


App Store rules is something I wish Apple had been upfront about since day one. It reminds me too much on how the MPAA ratings board works...which NO company should have an approval process like that. Now granted, Apple did do a bit of a better job opening up how they decide on things, but I feel like even that can go further or at least have a few more checks and balances since this seems to be a misunderstanding. Sure, thousands of apps are approved either way...but still...I feel like this is a non-issue that should have never gotten to newsworthy levels.

posted on 29 May 2012, 13:17 3

5. remixfa (Posts: 14168; Member since: 19 Dec 2008)


all this is old news. we know apple exerts manic god like power over the app market. if you dont like it, publish on another app store... or through cydia

posted on 29 May 2012, 20:51 1

13. Lucas777 (Posts: 2137; Member since: 06 Jan 2011)


exactly… its not like apple is all the sudden being controlling.. if they cant play by apples rules then they cant play apples game.. not to many other options

posted on 29 May 2012, 13:23 1

6. cj100570 (Posts: 204; Member since: 12 May 2009)


Amen! These stories about Apple and it's app policies aren't even worth wasting time writing about them.

posted on 29 May 2012, 14:06

7. metalpoet (unregistered)


the cellular industry is becoming more and more corrupt with each passing day, as consumers we need to either conform to there ways or abandon having a cell phone. it sux but its the truth.

posted on 29 May 2012, 14:29

8. Atrixboyyy (Posts: 267; Member since: 03 Nov 2011)


Couldn't agree more .

posted on 29 May 2012, 16:03

9. Commentator (Posts: 2496; Member since: 16 Aug 2011)


"Google is going this way, Facebook is definitely going this way." Just because Apple is accused of being a dictatorship doesn't mean its competitors aren't.

posted on 29 May 2012, 19:55

11. taco50 (banned) (Posts: 5506; Member since: 08 Oct 2009)


maybe try doing some research

posted on 29 May 2012, 23:25

14. Commentator (Posts: 2496; Member since: 16 Aug 2011)


Um, okay Taco, I was pretty much defending Apple from all the people who see this article's title and post "I agree" and "that's true" without reading the article and seeing that this guy has it out for Google and Facebook as well (hence the quotation), but whatever...

posted on 30 May 2012, 02:36 1

16. qxavierus (Posts: 26; Member since: 20 Mar 2012)


Well, it just comes to show how Taco's mind is working. He doesn't read people's comments completely, or he is incapable to understand them.

posted on 29 May 2012, 17:11 1

10. Republican (Posts: 99; Member since: 05 Apr 2012)


Loser apps dont belong on Apple. They can all migrate to android.

posted on 29 May 2012, 19:55 1

12. taco50 (banned) (Posts: 5506; Member since: 08 Oct 2009)


+1 my friend!

posted on 30 May 2012, 01:42 2

15. bayusuputra (Posts: 945; Member since: 12 Feb 2012)


yeah, agree..

let all those developers go to android.. the more the merrier..

we'll take loser apps as well..
we are not that exclusive arrogant society..
that's the difference..

back to the topic.. app dictatorship?! WOW! VERY BIG SURPRISE!!!

posted on 30 May 2012, 04:59 1

17. frydaexiii (Posts: 1239; Member since: 01 Dec 2011)


Yup, tell that to the creators of Instagram, Temple Run, Angry Birds, Flipboard and many other devs who have already ported their games and apps over to Android. I don't care if there are crap apps, just as long as good apps come in too, which they are.

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