Apple had placed a ban on the social networking app called MassRoots. It was labeled a social network for marijuana enthusiasts and was seen as social networking of the future – amongst those who were connoisseurs of marijuana. While Apple had made the app unavailable in the App Store, the company reversed course late this week, allowing the app to return to the store. Initially, it was banned on the premise of breaking the guidelines which were fairly straight forward regarding apps that encouraged consumption of alcohol or illegal substances in excessive fashion.
Apple allowed MassRoots to work around the issue by adding geo-tracking to any user who decides to download the app. Now, anyone who wants to download the app will be tagged and checked-in, via location tracker – which will make a determination regarding the legality of using marijuana in your location. However, this decision simply did not come overnight for the tech giant Apple. It was actually spawned by a high number of petition signatures, and MassRoots creating a campaign to get the app back onto the App Store. MassRoots even went as far as getting some larger organizations to send Tim Cook, the CEO of Apple, a letter which outlined the reasons why this was something that simply would not be an issue – if made legal to download in the App Store.
However, MassRoots isn’t experiencing the same love over Valentines weekend that other App Store hopefuls are. Instead, many apps are having a challenging time getting past strict rules and regulations around guns, and their place within apps. Apple has recently began rejecting games which were making it through the system – due to a growing presence of firearms. Similarly, the company has expanded their previous regulation – citing that guns should not be visible or present in screenshots of the game – or in areas where users can easily see the content inside the App Store.
The game Gunslugs II was having a particularly difficult time getting through the new regulation, and actually has begun creating a similar campaign MassRoots campaign as well in an effort to get the game over previous regulation. However, Apple has pointed out that this particular instance was simply due to a screenshot and that regulation would not hamper games that were on the market – as long as they followed those new regulations.