Apple changes mind on rejected e-book reader app

App Store initially rejected the Eucalyptus app because it offered access to a text-only version of the Kama Sutra.

Apple has had a change of heart and decided to allow an iPhone app that offered access to the Kama Sutra.

Apple on Thursday notified the developer that it had rejected the e-book reader app because it deemed the content available on Eucalyptus as "objectionable." As it does with all books available through the app, Eucalyptus downloads a text-only version of the ancient Indian book on sexuality from Project Gutenberg.

The Kama Sutra does not come installed on the app; as with any book title, users must search for the book and download it. The baffling thing in this case is that the book is available on the iPhone using other e-book readers available on the App Store.

Then early Sunday, Apple changed its position and accepted the app after discussions with Eucalyptus developer James Montgomerie, the developer wrote on his blog:

Earlier today I received a phone call from an Apple representative. He was very complimentary about Eucalyptus. We talked about the confusion surrounding its App Store rejections, which I am happy to say is now fully resolved. He invited me to re-build and submit a version of Eucalyptus with no filters for immediate approval, and that full version is now available on the iPhone App Store.

When the App Store was announced in March 2008, Apple said it would vet every single application submitted to the App Store and approve or reject applications based on the company's internal standards. However, Apple has a mixed record on apps that win approval.

Last month, the App Store approved an application called Baby Shaker, the object of which was to stop the incessant crying of an infant pictured onscreen by violently shaking the iPhone, at which point two red "x" marks appear over the baby's eyes. After a wave of protest, Apple removed the app .

In March, Apple reversed itself and accepted a popular Twitter app for the iPhone and iPod Touch that gives users access to the Twitter Trends section, which displays the most frequent topics or words on Twitter at any given moment--including swear words.

In the past, the company has also banned a book from the App Store for using dirty language , yet approved a fast-growing category of fart-related applications , leaving many to wonder exactly what sort of standards are used to evaluate iPhone applications.

 

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