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Apple listed among parties in Chinese pornography investigation

updated 10:20 am EDT, Wed April 17, 2013

Thought to be tied to revived anti-porn campaign by government

Apple's App Store has been named as one of a collection of app stores and websites that have been investigated for providing pornography in China, says the Wall Street Journal. The list appears in a new article from the state-run Chinese People's Daily. The investigation of the App Store is unusual though, as Apple maintains an anti-pornography policy, and in the West the company has sometimes been criticized as too strict.

The attention could be linked to two factors. In March the Chinese government launched a revived campaign against pornography, which is officially banned but has proved impossible to block completely. Later in the month one regulator called the App Store a source of "obscene pornographic" content, and ordered Apple to remove the content, submit a report, and take steps to prevent future issues. Around the same time, the state Xinhua news agency ran a series of complaints from the Chinese public about pornographic e-books sold via Apple.

In some cases the government will use anti-porn campaigns as an excuse to target political threats. Apple has come under heavy fire from state media lately, not only over pornography but also its warranty practices, which prompted a response from CEO Tim Cook. It's unknown if the Chinese government is deliberately attacking Apple, or if the company has simply drawn media focus through its growing presence in the country.



By Electronista Staff
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