As discussed here before, I think video games are often treated with the faulty assumption that they should somehow be the only art form in existence to only have nice unobjectionable content that offends no one.
With the seemingly arbitrary rejection policies of the iPhone App Store continuing and no end in sight, it occurs to me that there is a theory that could explain Apple’s behavior as rational, if morally dubious. While the App Store policy is obviously horrible from an end-user and developer point of view, there may be some method to the apparent madness.
Look at it from Apple’s point of view. Here is what they get from having an opaque and inconsistent policy:
- Apple avoids having to formulate a policy that works for all cultures across the globe. After all, standards for nudity, profanity and violence are completely inconsistent between the countries of the world.
- Apple thereby avoids having to defend and argue about the policy.
- The arbitrariness of the current situation has an intended chilling effect, by which developers self-censor in order to avoid having their applications blocked.
Anyway, that’s a theory that explains the seemingly arbitrary App Store policy as rational and deliberate. It’s either that, or Apple aren’t thinking clearly.