So, I’m sitting with Mike Pegg here at our Google DevFest venue in Buenos Aires (by the way, in the Puerto Madero campus of the Universidad Católica Argentina, which is a lovely place). This guy who’s attending the event walks up to us and says in a pained voice “Damn, Apple just called and told me they’d taken my app down. This is awful!”
Mike and I were a little taken aback; the guy just stood there, so eventually I asked “Uh, what did it do?”
“Oh, just a little AR thing. They took months and months to approve it and now they’ve taken it down!”
“Yeah, but what did it do?”
“Oh, it overlaid this realistic-looking rifle on the on the camera view, you could point it at people and shoot them.”
And with that he walked off. Mike and stared blank-faced at each other; Mike asked “He’s making that up, right?” I said there was no way to tell, but it sounded perfectly believable. Then I was laughing.
While I’m not a notable fan of the App Store’s policies, my problem is with prior approval; I’m totally OK with ripping things down when you don’t want ’em in your store. (Particularly if your store isn’t the exclusive sales channel, but that’s another issue.) I don’t really have an opinion whether Apple made the right call but hey, it’s their call.
Why was I laughing? Sympathy for whoever had to make the call; I can just imagine the lengthy email threads and internal wrangling that I bet goes on around this sort of thing.