Playboy App Not Changing Apple's Strict Content Policy
The blogosphere has been buzzing this week with news of Playboy's forthcoming "uncensored" iPad app, in which current and archived content from the popular men's magazine will be made available to users of Apple's touchscreen tablet. But one critical piece of information has been absent in virtually all of the reports chronicling this development - a formal comment from Apple regarding its longstanding and strict content policy.
Earlier this week, publisher Hugh Hefner tweeted: "Big news! Playboy -- both old & new -- will be available on iPad beginning in March."
While the entire catalog will be available uncensored, no one initially knew if Apple had sanctioned the app or if a dedicated reader of sorts will be the mechanism by which Playboy magazine will be available on the iPad. It now appears that the archive alluded to will be displayed via a Web page - a clever way to skirt Apple's stringent app content restrictions.
Consequently, at this time there is no evidence to suggest that a major overhaul of Apple's policy and App Licensing agreement is ahead. Could a tweak or an exception be made to the policy by Apple? In a heartbeat. But those who are reporting that Apple may be on the verge of ushering in the era of graphic adult material on the iPad have absolutely no basis for making this argument.
On numerous occasions, Apple Chief Executive Steve Jobs has pointed to pornography as a major reason for the App Store approval process. In 2010, Jobs took a subtle jab at the "porn store" available via Google's Android mobile operating system. "That's a place we don't want to go, so we're not going to," Jobs said. And it's unlikely that's going to change, even as Jobs departs for yet another medical leave of absence.