Murderdrome BANNED by Apple

From the InfuriousComics web site:

By now, you might have heard that Murderdrome has been banned by Apple. This is due to the part of the sdk that suggests content must NOT offend anyone in ‘apple’s reasonable’ opinion. Here at infurious, we would love to work with Apple to ensure a content rating system can be put in place to allow material that is no more offensive than many of the R rated films available to download on iTunes.

As a result, PJ has put all of the frames of MURDERDROME on the Infurious web site so people can get a chance to read it. Now, hark back to the post I made a few days ago of films without ratings on the iTunes Movie Store.

It’s also been covered on the “Lying in the Gutters” blog by Rich Johnston (the most popular and longest running comics column on the internet):

A remarkable plan.

Slightly scuppered by Apple telling the creators that “Murderdrome cannot be posted to the App Store because it contains content that does not comply with Community Standards” and “Applications must not contain any obscene, pornographic, offensive or defamatory content or materials of any kind (text, graphics, images, photographs, etc.), or other content or materials that in Apple’s reasonable judgement may be found objectionable by iPhone or iPod touch users.”

Please give your opinion on the InfuriousComics web site.

I think it’s a shame that it has to come to this but it’s notable that there is no content guideline for applications on the App Store. For “Games” there is a guideline for suitability that is used by some and not all and, as we have seen, Apple is inconsistent in the use of the ratings system for their film content. How many books on there might be said to have explicit content – would you consider Candide (with it’s religious, political and intellectual views), or Dracula (with it’s Victorian examination of sexuality) or Tales of Terror and Mystery by Arthur Conan Doyle (It’s horror!) – don’t you think these are as effective as the visualisations possible through comic art?

Might be useful to note that AMERICAN PSYCHO is available WITH A PREVIEW, without a rating. Is it that writing (or the spoken word of writing) is less effective? Less able to rile the emotions?

5 thoughts on “Murderdrome BANNED by Apple”

  1. Not for me it isn’t.

    Anyway, building the comic directly into the viewer is one reason for this issue. There is already a comic viewer on the iTunes store – but as it allows the comic to be downloaded from a secondary site, Apple have no reason to censor.

    You kinda backed Apple into a corner here, and I don’t see what else they could have done. Building a rating systems for applications is going to make things more difficult for developers in the long run.

  2. Here are the issues I see with a separate reader…

    1) you need a hefty back end infrastructure including processing and administration
    2) you miss out on interesting debates like why content is not rated.

  3. It would be difficult to separate the comic from the reader with this one because of the multiple layers. This isn’t a traditional text ebook. The software is probably not that big, but the graphic files are probably big.

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