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New Apple app guidelines specifically exempt political satirists

Apple has relaxed some of their requirements for its App Store apps. The clause regarding defamatory or offensive material is still in the guidelines, but they’ve explicitly made it clear that “professional political satirists and humorists” were exempt.

Here’s how the two clauses are written:

14.1 Any app that is defamatory, offensive, mean-spirited, or likely to place the targeted individual or group in harms way will be rejected

14.2 Professional political satirists and humorists are exempt from the ban on offensive or mean-spirited commentary

Obviously the first question is what do they interpret as professional?

Community Comments

#1 Tom Racine
@ 10:25 am

You know, the best thing about this edict is that I’m sure it won’t cause any controversy or long winded threads here. Nope. Not at all.

#2 Howard Tayler
@ 10:29 am

So… no talking smack, unless you’re a professional smack-talker.

I guess a better exception would be “no smack-talking unless you, as a professional smack-talker, are prepared to accept any and all liability for the smack you talk.”

Which is really how the spirit of the whole thing works. Apple doesn’t want to be listed in defamation suits (for which I do not blame them) and needs to find a way to present the terms of service for app developers, content providers, and consumers in such a way that Apple has ironclad defamation protection.

#3 Ted Rall
@ 8:17 am

This language, though welcome from a free speech POV, will not protect Apple from being sued for libel. Lawyers repping a libel plaintiff will sue the creator, Apple and any other party that is involved with its dissemination.

#4 Jason
@ 12:06 am

It is hard to read.. .but it is called Satire and it is VERY well wrtietn! Thanks Bob! Love your Satire and HATE how true it is when you replace the word Christianitya0 with the word Islam. ((HUGS)) Bob and hope you had a great birthday! Your Pats won! I watched in your honor!

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