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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Papa Midnight

 
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Andrew EisenIn case anyone was wondering, Nintendo's eShop no longer does that "you don't make money until you've sold x units" thing. http://www.develop-online.net/news/nintendo-no-minimum-sales-needed-for-eshop-revenues/019921010/24/2014 - 1:52pm
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Andrew EisenI'm not picking up Bayonetta. Today. Tomorrow's not looking good either. I'll get it eventually though!10/24/2014 - 12:23pm
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MaskedPixelantePicked up Bayonetta 2, which according to Polygon means I am now a terrible human being.10/24/2014 - 11:58am
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Papa MidnightYou think a bit of cancer surgery would keep The Cynical Brit from railing about bad PC ports? Not a chance! :)10/24/2014 - 10:15am
Matthew Wilsonmight be a bit soon only becouse he got out of cancer surgery last week, but ask his email is public.10/24/2014 - 9:56am
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MaskedPixelanteGOG has a four day countdown to their next publisher. All hints suggest Disney, but no guarantee it'll be LucasArts.10/24/2014 - 6:58am
Neo_DrKefkawith a neutral party Moderating it. I've been waiting a long time for a GamerGate to happen but now all I want is the healing to start. Weird huh? Gamers don't need to be attacking gamers we should all be on the same side10/24/2014 - 12:39am
Neo_DrKefkaRight now from what I seen your tweet and the other guys tweet there are hard feelings. Until we start a dialogue with each other I think it will get worse before it will get better. I hope you guys work something out meet in a neutral stream10/24/2014 - 12:37am
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