I think most would agree that clubbing a seal to death for its pelt is a pretty abhorrent, violent act. But is a comedic iPhone app that lets you commit that act equally untoward? Opinions will differ on that topic, for sure, but Apple's official position on the subject seems to be that is very naughty indeed. According to iPhone app developer Matt Smyth, his iPhone iSealClub app has been rejected by Apple because it contains "objectionable content." Smyth was informed of the decision on Tuesday in an email from Apple (check out this YouTube video to get a glimpse of the game in action).
Matt Smyth can't understand why Apple rejected iSealClub:
"They allow other apps, like Trophy Hunt for bear and deer and whatnot. I don't see the difference between killing a seal and killing a deer," he said in an interview Wednesday.
A fair point. In iSealClub players use a cartoon club to hunt cartoon seals, but there are limits that make the game a little more tasteful. The game doesn't contain any blood and baby seals are off limits. Smyth, a Newfoundland resident, feels iSealClub was rejected because the company is against seal hunting, which is "socially acceptable" in his province and sanctioned by the Canadian government.
Meanwhile PETA was delighted with the decision. Commenting on the official PETA Blog, Jennifer O'Connor had nothing but love for Apple CEO Steve Jobs - even though Apple previously rejected one of its apps:
Sure, Apple banned our Be Nice to Bunnies app after catching a glimpse of sexy Stephanie Pratt in the buff, but PETA doesn't hold it against Steve Jobs. In fact, we think that Jobs and the rest of the Apple crew are pretty great after learning that the App Store said "no way" to an app called iSealClub—a game in which users wield a metal-tipped club and earn points by bashing seals to death.
O'Connor went on to say that PETA would be sending Jobs a "thank-you note along with some yummy vegan chocolate seals" as a token of appreciation.
Maybe i'm wrong, but vegan chocolate seals sound like more a punishment than a reward.