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Health care reform iPhone app rejected for political reasons

updated 09:35 pm EDT, Tue September 29, 2009

Apple claims content is "politically charged"

Apple has frustrated yet another developer, as the company allegedly rejected an iPhone app, iSinglePayer, which promotes health insurance reform in the US. The app displays charts and information regarding single-payer health care systems, while GPS information can be used to find a local congressperson. Users can even view the donations to each congressperson from the health sector.

Five weeks after the app was submitted, an Apple representative reportedly called the developer, Floatopian, to provide reasons for the rejection. Floatopian was told the app was rejected, in part, because it is "politically charged." The second cited reason involves the app's creation by a lone developer. If certain submissions, such as the official Obama app, have the support of an official candidate, they are allegedly deemed acceptable.

A wide variety of politically-oriented apps have been approved for distribution on the App Store. An unofficial Drudge Report app is available, although it is a conservative news source instead of providing information on a single political issue.

"America's political civil war has hit the Apple iPhone... The First Shot Over The Liberal Bow Has Been Fired!," reads a description for the app Conservative Talking Points. The app developer, Unlikely Pear, only lists a single title on the App Store.

"When a single developer wants to voice his opinions, Apple censors it," says Red from Floatopian. "Unless, of course, you can pawn your propaganda app off as news..."

The developer is currently seeking sponsorship from a large advocacy group or politician interested in health reform. It remains unclear if Apple will reverse its decision following an endorsement by a second group or individual.

by MacNN Staff





  1. ClevelandAdv

    Joined: Dec 1969



    Surprised that Apple rejected this propaganda app. I wonder if Al Gore will quit the Apple board over this one.

    If the author thinks Apple is in bed with the vast right-wing conspiracy, then he simply need to look at where they donate their political dollars (Didn't Gore and Jobs support Bush in 2004?)

  1. danviento

    Joined: Dec 1969



    First rejection that has made sense in a long time.

    Although, people likely to buy this already their opinion floating in one direction- it'd just be some skewed facts and figures they can use to bring up in an argument.

    People who are uniformed enough to buy this as 'news' could probably have their mind changed in either direction with a information.

  1. ebeyer

    Joined: Dec 1969


    Political apps aren't new.

    How is this different from the Obama and McCain apps that were approved last year? I know they were because I have both of them.

  1. testudo

    Joined: Dec 1969



    This is where apple's approval process has problems. There is a free-speech segment here that is being squashed out of arbitrary rules.

    Oh, but it's OK. Apple should be allowed to say what can go on their devices. Up next, banning ebook readers that allow one to read Rush Limbaugh books. Then maybe they'll not allow you to play Bob Marley music because he once sang about shooting a sheriff.

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