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U.S. Senators Ask Apple to Remove DUI Checkpoint Apps From App Store

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CNET reports that four U.S. senators have sent a letter to Apple's iPhone software head, Scott Forstall, asking the company to remove from the App Store applications that are designed to allow users to be alerted to checkpoints for sobriety testing.
U.S. Senators Harry Reid (D-Nev.), Charles E. Schumer (D-N.Y.), Frank Lautenberg (D-N.J.), and Tom Udall (D-N.M.) are named as senders in the letter, which is addressed to Apple's senior vice president of iPhone software, Scott Forstall. No specific applications are named, but the letter highlights apps that "contain a database of DUI [driving under the influence] checkpoints updated in real-time" as well as one that sends out real-time alerts about the existence of these checkpoints.

"With more than 10,000 Americans dying in drunk-driving crashes every year, providing access to iPhone and iPad applications that alert users to DUI checkpoints is harmful to public safety," the group wrote. "We know that your company shares our desire to end the scourge of drunk driving and we therefore would ask you to remove these applications from your store."
The same letter was also sent to Google and Research in Motion to encourage those companies to remove similar apps from their application stores. Research in Motion has already agreed to remove applications offering data on DUI checkpoint locations.

While the letter itself does not specifically reference any iOS applications, a press release from Senator Schumer names Trapster and PhantomALERT as examples of free apps offering location information on such checkpoints.

In addition to real-time information on DUI checkpoints, many of the apps in question also offer information on speed traps, red light and speed cameras, accidents, and other traffic conditions, several of which have also been considered controversial, but the senators' letter focuses specifically on the DUI checkpoint functionality.

Article Link: U.S. Senators Ask Apple to Remove DUI Checkpoint Apps From App Store
 

martygras9

macrumors 6502
Aug 13, 2007
264
73
I actually agree. Pull 'em. It may be censorship, but it's dangerous not to.
 
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guerro

macrumors regular
Jul 18, 2002
212
272
Parts Unknown
I am not sure about other states, but in CA, Law Enforcement is specifically required to announce DUI checkpoints and provide an alternative route. Asking to have these applications removed from app stores contradicts the law regarding DUI checkpoints. Gotta love Politicians. Write a law then contradict it. Awesome.
 
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ApplLover

macrumors member
Feb 9, 2011
43
0
Panama
Im in agreement with this.
Remove them from the App Store.

It might be illegal etc.. but we must draw the line somewhere.
 
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Arcus

macrumors 6502a
Dec 28, 2004
705
303
of my hand will get me slapped.
Oh god no I hope apple doesn't cave to this kind of Orwellian garbage. I feel for all of the victims of DUIs and know that I have personally called the police on a car that was very obviously had an impaired person behind the wheel but as a non drunk driver if I want to avoid being hassled I should be able to.
 
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iDisk

macrumors 6502a
Jan 2, 2010
825
0
Menlo Park, CA
Personally I find it hard to believe that so drunk as to warrant avoiding a checkpoint will be collected enough to use the app effectively in the first place.

Miles you make a great point... You also confirm that Apple better pull them, its a pointless app because if your so drunk then you can't operate a phone let alone an app.
 
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rockets21

macrumors newbie
Feb 12, 2008
4
0
I live in Nevada and honestly the cops spend more time Giving tickets out then doing real police work. Since the state has been financial hardship, The cops are out drumming up business. Honestly, do you think someone who is Drunk is going to be checking the app for the checkpoints? Its just an excuse to get rid of these apps from the store and increase revenue. Apple dont bend to the pressure, These apps do not break any rules for the App store and if you start letting the Government decide what should and shouldnt be, is the day I finally Jailbreak my Iphone.
 
Comment

martygras9

macrumors 6502
Aug 13, 2007
264
73
I live in Nevada and honestly the cops spend more time Giving tickets out then doing real police work. Since the state has been financial hardship, The cops are out drumming up business. Honestly, do you think someone who is Drunk is going to be checking the app for the checkpoints? Its just an excuse to get rid of these apps from the store and increase revenue. Apple dont bend to the pressure, These apps do not break any rules for the App store and if you start letting the Government decide what should and shouldnt be, is the day I finally Jailbreak my Iphone.

My God, jailbreak your phone anyway....it's fantastic!
 
Comment

kweke

macrumors newbie
Mar 18, 2008
1
0
I am not sure about other states, but in CA, Law Enforcement is specifically required to announce DUI checkpoints and provide an alternative route. Asking to have these applications removed from app stores contradicts the law regarding DUI checkpoints. Gotta love Politicians. Write a law then contradict it. Awesome.

It is the same in Florida, DUI checkpoints are held to be constitutional where there is notice of when they will be operational, what traffic will be affected and the notice is published before they are set up. I would imagine some of these apps rely on notice in the newspaper in addition to community reporting. But who cares about that whole 4th Amendment thing. :(
 
Comment

bbplayer5

macrumors 68030
Apr 13, 2007
2,997
668
No one likes drunk drivers. No one. Period. That being said, Apple should not pull the App. Speed trap apps will be next (Trapster)... Keep the app store open to everything thats legal. This is no different than a friend calling you telling you to avoid a check point. Neither is illegal.
 
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iDisk

macrumors 6502a
Jan 2, 2010
825
0
Menlo Park, CA
I actually agree. Pull 'em. It may be censorship, but it's dangerous not to.

Im in agreement with this.
Remove them from the App Store.

It might be illegal etc.. but we must draw the line somewhere.

Pull them Apple. I'm honestly surprised they were allowed in the first place...

Personally I find it hard to believe that so drunk as to warrant avoiding a checkpoint will be collected enough to use the app effectively in the first place.

Do a poll macrumors.... Us 6 want them pulled Now!!... the others not quoted want them to stay on the App Store for no real good or beneficial reason
 
Comment
Oh god no I hope apple doesn't cave to this kind of Orwellian garbage. I feel for all of the victims of DUIs and know that I have personally called the police on a car that was very obviously had an impaired person behind the wheel but as a non drunk driver if I want to avoid being hassled I should be able to.

First of all, DUI checkpoints aren't so frequent that they provide every day hassle to drivers...secondly, they take a very short amount of time to go through (if you havnt been drinking, Cops know). Besides, how is this Orwellian at all? Apple isn't being asked to report users of the application or anything. Sorry man, but if it saves 1 life from drunk driving...it's the right thing to do.
 
Comment

johnparjr

macrumors 6502a
May 10, 2005
665
212
Earth
I am not sure about other states, but in CA, Law Enforcement is specifically required to announce DUI checkpoints and provide an alternative route. Asking to have these applications removed from app stores contradicts the law regarding DUI checkpoints. Gotta love Politicians. Write a law then contradict it. Awesome.

Yep In CA they have to post the time and locations in the newspaper or on the Police Dept website so pulling the App is a waste of time here.
 
Comment

xlii

macrumors 68000
Sep 19, 2006
1,859
67
Millis, Massachusetts
Let me see... wars in Iraq, Afghanistan, Libya... high unemployment in the USA. Cost of energy is killing the average guy in the pocketbook. I know... lets spend our time getting those terrible DUI apps out of the app store... that way we can tell our Constituents what a great job we are doing representing them in Washington.

PS

Don't forget to vote (them out).
 
Comment

Snookerman

macrumors 6502
Jul 6, 2008
391
9
Here in Sweden, the Police says that their goal is to increase safety, not catch people. I'd rather have a drunk driver stay at home because of an app warning of a checkpoint than get in the car and get caught.
 
Comment

ghostlines

macrumors regular
Feb 3, 2010
141
3
Amsterdam
Pull these apps? That's a little drastic if you can use the app to avoid DUI checks you're quite good enough to drive I "think". Or they could give the developers the option to just take out that feature and leave the rest.
 
Comment

habermas

macrumors newbie
Oct 21, 2008
16
0
What's the idea of DUI checkpoints anyway? Can't police officers just pull over drivers they suspect of DUI if they catch them while on regular patrol? That's how it works here at least. Much less predictable and it negates the utility of the apps in question..
 
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