Phone Story Pulled from Apple's App Store

September 14, 2011 -

Apple has taken down a game that is overly critical of the process by which most smart phones are made because it highlights the exploitation of workers and the environment. The game is called Phone Story and using a simple gameplay mechanic, shows how workers in third-world countries are treated. Perhaps the game was a little too controversial (or hit too close to home) for Apple, who pulled the game from its App store without public comment.

The game was developed by MolleIndustria, who are better known for their game, Every Day The Same Dream. Phone Story tells its tale via four mini-games that show what it takes to make a phone including extracting minerals for components in Congo, using outsourced labor in China, dealing with "e-waste" in Pakistan, and consumers buying the product in Western companies.

Early this morning a member of MolleIndustria tweeted that Phone Story had been removed from the App store for violating four app store review guidelines.

Those guidelines include depicting against children or child abuse, presenting objectionable or crude content, containing fraudulent of misleading representations, and failing to comply with all legal requirements.

The bad news is that MolleIndustria was planning on its 70 percent share (Apple takes 30 percent) of the app's profits including Students and Scholars Against Corporate Misbehavior. Of course, because Apple controls the gateway for all iOS software developers, they can do whatever they want. All we can do is tell you about it.

Source: Indiegames.com

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Comments

Re: Phone Story Pulled from Apple's App Store

Is it me, or is this article missing a couple key words?

"..guidelines include depicting against children..." Depicting what against children?

"...MolleIndustria was planning on its 70 percent share (Apple takes 30 percent) of the app's profits including Students and Scholars Against Corporate Misbehavior."  I believe you meant to say they were "planning on donating".

Re: Phone Story Pulled from Apple's App Store

Seems if they just remove the depictions of child abuse they can get their game back up. I think they can manage this without harming the (not entirely honest) message of their game.

Re: Phone Story Pulled from Apple's App Store

I'd recommend the developer port it to Android and release the APK publicly on their website AND on the Android market. That way, if it's removed by Google from the market, it's still available. Funny thing about when apps like these are taken down: typically, it turns more attention to them than they had before.

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Matthew Wilsonbut thats just it those sites, even the small ones, sell all over the country.09/23/2014 - 11:12am
Neenekoeither that or it would follow the car model of today. big ticket items are taxed according to your residence, not where you buy them.09/23/2014 - 11:07am
NeenekoI doubt it would be the retailer that handles the tax in the first place. If it goes through it would probably be folded in as a service on the processor end or via 'turbotax' style applications.09/23/2014 - 11:05am
Matthew Wilsonsimple there are over 10k tax areas in the us for sales tax. it would be impossible for small online retailers to handle that.09/23/2014 - 10:55am
IanCWhats wrong with charging tax in an online shop?09/23/2014 - 10:47am
E. Zachary KnightI don't see why it would be that difficult to maintain one. Especially for a news outlet with multiple people on the payroll.09/23/2014 - 9:37am
Matthew Wilsonthey can, but will they? more inportantly will the traditional sites be willing to do the extra work to maintain the list?09/23/2014 - 9:02am
E. Zachary KnightSo how will it reduce the power of the traditional games press? They can create curated stores too.09/23/2014 - 8:39am
Matthew WilsonI think its a good thing, but it does mean traditional games press will have less power than ever before. To be fair most of the gaming press were never big on pc gaming anyways.09/23/2014 - 8:33am
E. Zachary KnightMatthew, is that a bad or good thing?09/23/2014 - 7:43am
MechaTama31When you say "youtuber", I picture some sort of customizable potato...09/22/2014 - 10:48pm
Matthew Wilsonthis change will only give youtubers more power.09/22/2014 - 9:54pm
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Andrew EisenOooh, Atlus sale in the 3DS eShop. I might have to bust open my piggy bank. http://www.siliconera.com/2014/09/22/shin-megami-tensei-iv-atlus-games-sale/09/22/2014 - 7:21pm
Matthew Wilsonhttp://www.pcgamer.com/2014/09/23/steam-update/ steam finally adds content Curation. I like that the user can pick which peoples recommendations they want to see.09/22/2014 - 7:16pm
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