Apple censors gay comic book for iPad

Bonte

macrumors 6502a
Original poster
Jul 1, 2002
926
139
Bruges, Belgium
I've recently started to submit comics for the iPad via the Appstore, at the time i can't submit them to the iBookstore because i'm an small publisher outside the US.

My first submission already got banned for "materials that may be considered obscene, pornographic, or defamatory". The book "importance of being earnest (Tom Bouden)" is a 80 page graphic novel based on the play from Oscar Wilde and deals with four gentlemen rather then two men and two women.

There is no dick in sight but some mild male love in drawings, we can't help the feeling that this is a anti-gay sentiment with the reviewer.

i attached the 6 censored pages
 

Attachments


brock2621

macrumors 6502a
Jun 8, 2007
992
451
Kentucky
I'm not going to go all political and explain myself, but I for one, am totally fine with apple refusing you... and anything else they find offensive. period. It's the same thing if I sold t-shirts, and decided not to buy gay art to put on them. As an owner, you have the right to refuse to sell something and technically need no reason why. BUT, i would probably post this in a different forum as it doesn't have much to do with the ipad itself, and more to do with apples approval process.
 

Mal

macrumors 603
Jan 6, 2002
6,253
17
Orlando
Sorry, dude, but Apple's completely correct to refuse you on those grounds. I'd do so as well. Not because of any homosexual content, but you've got clearly suggestive images, as well as a pretty good shot of that guy's butt in the bed there. Definitely wouldn't meet any decency standards I'm familiar with (i.e., wouldn't get you an R-rating necessarily, but certainly put you solidly in the PG-13 category were it a movie).

jW
 

jimmypopjr

macrumors regular
Jan 7, 2009
107
0
Philly
It sucks that it got rejected, but like the two above me, I can kinda see why - and I don't think it has anything to do with anti-gay sentiment. I haven't really checked lately, but Apple is definitely locking down on sexual content and this fits that bill. There's an image of two naked guys hugging. Is there anything wrong with that? Absolutely not. But it seems Apple is still working out how they want to handle adult material, and that is definitely adult.

Even though there's no dicks in sight, I can still picture even the most homosexual-friendly parents being annoyed at Apple if their young son/daughter stumbles onto this comic and asks the inevitable questions that would arise.
 

eawmp1

macrumors 601
Feb 19, 2008
4,130
5
FL
Probably a PRSI thread.

I couldn't care less what Apple put IN the Store, but I don't represent all. Apple is private company obsessed with its image. If anything might negatively affect its bottom line, Apple has a right to not provide it. Probably won't find comics showing hetero love either. In any case let's not confuse the 2 issues:
1) Does Apple have a right to control content in its private store?
2) Is there an anti-gay sentiment in society in general?

Calling Lee!!!
 

niuniu

macrumors 68020
Isn't there an explicit section now for content? Personally I don't find that comic offensive, I had a look at it, just some dude in underwear, so it's certainly not obscene. We have guys in underwear on tv adverts during they day. They must have found it pornographic I guess then, which may or may not be the case. I don't personally find that pornographic, and if it was a chick in underwear, I wouldn't find that pornographic either - and neither would must guys. Society is too de-sensitised to nudity and sexual exploitation for that. Maybe it's the context of the thing, dunno.

(The again my idea of porn involves a lot of closeups, pain and a speculum). :D
 

ditzy

macrumors 68000
Sep 28, 2007
1,710
156
I honestly believe that a heterosexual comic that was as suggestive as that wouldn't get through either. Apple have had a crack down on any thing sexual, (unless you are a major distributer i.e playboy) recently. Plus Apple have a pretty good record on equality.
 

GeekLawyer

macrumors 68020
Yeah, I'm gay, and Apple is one of the most pro-gay/pro-equality corporations in the US.

With all that said, I don't have a problem with their decision in the case of your graphic novel. Apple isn't the public library; they're not the government. They are the gatekeepers into their stores.

I do wish you the best. I think you'll have a much better shot once the iBookstore is set up to receive more indie publications.
 

WLS

macrumors 65816
Jul 10, 2008
1,230
61
Sorry, dude, but Apple's completely correct to refuse you on those grounds. I'd do so as well. Not because of any homosexual content, but you've got clearly suggestive images, as well as a pretty good shot of that guy's butt in the bed there. Definitely wouldn't meet any decency standards I'm familiar with (i.e., wouldn't get you an R-rating necessarily, but certainly put you solidly in the PG-13 category were it a movie).

jW
+1 Definitely R rated and very suggestive. :apple:
 

anthonymoody

macrumors 68030
Aug 8, 2002
2,529
601
I honestly believe that a heterosexual comic that was as suggestive as that wouldn't get through either.

Well there's certainly a very easy way to find out. If you really want to apples to apples it, photoshop these exact drawings and replace the men with women.
 

Bonte

macrumors 6502a
Original poster
Jul 1, 2002
926
139
Bruges, Belgium
I also think (hope) that the iBookstore will be less restrictive but 6 mildly suggestive themes in a 80 page book can't be compared to some apps that show a series of tits, the reviewers seem to be afraid to make a decision.

They said i can change the images and resubmit by saturday, so i put big black blocks on them and resubmitted. :cool:
 

GeekLawyer

macrumors 68020
They said i can change the images and resubmit by saturday, so i put big black blocks on them and resubmitted. :cool:
Do you think, artistically, that was the best course of action? I mean, I guess so for expediency's sake, but down the road, maybe just re-draw the panels to be (even more) tame. It's something I could see myself buying from the iBookstore. Seriously: good luck with it!
 

Bonte

macrumors 6502a
Original poster
Jul 1, 2002
926
139
Bruges, Belgium
Do you think, artistically, that was the best course of action? I mean, I guess so for expediency's sake, but down the road, maybe just re-draw the panels to be (even more) tame. It's something I could see myself buying from the iBookstore. Seriously: good luck with it!
Thanks, its a $2,- book and i mention the censoring in the info, the uncensored images will be on the site. The artist isn't planning to redraw the scenes for this publication, also adding some clothes also wont change the suggestive nature of the drawings.
 

iVoid

macrumors 65816
Jan 9, 2007
1,115
122
Can't say I'm surprised in light of Apple's pro-censorship stance lately. The pile of apps burning in front of Steve's office just got higher.

It's sad that some people in a 'free' nation (like the USA is supposed to be) are okay with this censorship.


If you do resubmit with the black boxes, put "Censored by Apple" in the black boxes to make sure the readers know who's responsible.
 

OllyW

Moderator
Staff member
Oct 11, 2005
16,747
6,364
The Black Country, England
There's nothing in those images that I would consider "materials that may be considered obscene, pornographic, or defamatory".

There are cartoons published every day in the British newspapers which have a similar level of near-nudity to yours and also photographs of topless "Page 3" models. I wonder if Apple will kick up a fuss and attempt to censor this content if these newspapers are sold for the iPad?
 

mac jones

macrumors 68040
Apr 6, 2006
3,254
1
Just tone it down and see what they do.

After all, it was a Victorian/Edwardian era play (very few dicks) :D
 

Night Spring

macrumors G5
Jul 17, 2008
13,064
5,084
I honestly believe that a heterosexual comic that was as suggestive as that wouldn't get through either.
There's quite a few Japanese manga available in the App store that depicts sexual situations between a man and a woman. Difference between those and the pages posted here is that they don't include full nudity. I have one manga I downloaded about half a year ago that shows a woman naked from the waist up while a man performs oral sex on her -- and it has now disappeared from the App store!
 

Disc Golfer

macrumors 6502a
Dec 17, 2009
582
0
The itunes music store has all kinds of music that has "****" and "****" and "bitch" and the like, not to mention stuff that glorifies violence against women and police officers. Why is this worse?
 

bossxii

macrumors 68000
Nov 9, 2008
1,749
0
Kansas City
Private store, they can do what they like. I support them in keeping "adult" themed material out of the app store. While this may have some story or content to it, 99.99% of the "mature/adult" themed apps are total crap. Anyone that's want to view porn or adult themed content has millions of sites all around the web. My vote is to keep it out of the app store.
 

jettie1767

macrumors 6502
Oct 29, 2003
405
107
New Jersey, USA
So some kid stumbles upon it? No way. Gay content out.
Uhm, the statement you just made is completely and utterly wrong as well as homophobic.

I think any str8, bi, or gay sexual content should be banned if you're thinking of banning content just because you're afraid a kid will stumble upon it.
 

ucfgrad93

macrumors P6
Aug 17, 2007
17,530
8,151
Colorado
I'm not going to go all political and explain myself, but I for one, am totally fine with apple refusing you... and anything else they find offensive. period. It's the same thing if I sold t-shirts, and decided not to buy gay art to put on them. As an owner, you have the right to refuse to sell something and technically need no reason why. BUT, i would probably post this in a different forum as it doesn't have much to do with the ipad itself, and more to do with apples approval process.
Well said. Apple is under no obligation to approve everything that people submit to the App Store.