Apple has been bashed in the past few months for its strict policies when it comes to approving apps and getting them up live in iTunes. We all remember how Apple did not want any developers to use the word “Android” in their app descriptions. The company does not allow adult apps to make their way to iTunes either. So there is no question Apple is as controlling as any other company out there when it comes to protecting its product ecosystem and brand. But is Apple abusing its power and banning apps developed by those who are critical of it?
Michael Wolff, a Vanity Fair columnist, has realized this the hard way. He wrote a story about how Apple Steve Jobs may be losing it when it comes to keeping porn off iPhone. Has that column come back to bite Michael where it hurts the most? After all, how would you explain his app being rejected by Apple? It’s quite possible that Michael’s app was rejected by mistake. Steve Fiore had to resubmit his app. That could be very much the case this time as well.
Should Apple be able to ban applications that are developed by those who are critical of Apple’s CEO? The simple answer is no. Apple may not be running a democracy, but at the same time, there is no justification in keeping perfectly legit apps away from iTunes. The trouble is, it’s tough to tell whether Apple is punishing Michael here. The company has made mistakes in the passed only to remedy them later.
Apple’s closed system allows the company to control quality and bring the apps that it sees fit to iTunes. That of course means a lot of apps never make it to iTunes. That does not mean that Apple is out to get the folks behind those apps. Has Apple done some shady things in the past? Absolutely. I am just not sure this was one of those cases.