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Apple pulls 500px app from App Store, accuses it of allowing too easy access to porn

Apple pulls 500px app from App Store, accuses it of allowing too easy access to porn
500px is one of our favorite photography applications - a simply and beautifully designed app for photographers and enthusiasts, but also a community, it was suddenly pulled out of the Apple App Store for allegedly allowing easy access to pornographic images.

Here is the official explanation by Cupertino:

“The app was removed from the App Store for featuring pornographic images and material, a clear violation of our guidelines. We also received customer complaints about possible child pornography. We've asked the developer to put safeguards in place to prevent pornographic images and material in their app.”

Those are some heavy accusations from Apple, especially given the fact that 500px has never hosted purely pornographic pictures, and the nude images that are hosted are always artistic in nature, not vulgar in any way.

“We don’t allow pornographic images. If something is purely pornographic, it’s against our terms and it’s deleted,” 500px COO Evgeny Tchebotarev notes.

It is true, though, that through the search function one can find nude images in 500px. The service relies on its users to flag inappropriate images, but in addition it also has a very clear and enabled by default opt-out policy for nude images.

However, what makes Apple’s move particularly weird is the fact that the 500px app was on the App Store for nearly 16 months staying with virtually the same functionality from the get go. The app was only updated in November with a prettier UI but no other changes.

Here is the developer’s official response:

Now, we can understand Apple pulling the app immediately (if it didn’t and child pornography was found, that could be considered grounds for a lawsuit), but it’s strange that it did so with this exact application that has obviously been there for a long while. Pornographic content is of course not far from the reach via browsers as well, and here we’re not even talking about ‘pornographic’ images per se.

The 500px app should be back in a couple of days, but we are once again seeing Apple’s walled garden approach. The app is still freely available on the Google Play store. Question remains, though, is Apple's decision good for developers and users? We’ll let you sound off your thoughts in the comments below.

source: Tech Crunch

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