Monday, April 27, 2009

Shaken By Rejection

Over there in the parallel universe that is everything Apple, there is the App Store where one can download a variety of apps ranging from the incredibly mundane all the way to the completely useless. Oh, and with a useful one thrown in now and again. The majority of these apps are created by a third party not otherwise affiliated with Apple. They write their apps and submit them to Apple for approval for sale in the App store. For the most part, Apple approves the vast majority of submitted apps. No one knows what their criteria is because Apple operates under a veil of secrecy similar to that of the CIA only without all of the leaked memos. Occasionally, however, an app will get by and make it into the store only to evoke horror and outrage amongst those sitting around scanning the App Store for horror and outrage.

The latest app to catch the eyes of the outraged horror scanners was something called Baby Shaker. According to ABC News, the description reads: "See how long you can endure his or her adorable cries before you just have to find a way to quiet the baby down!" Um, wut? Yep, that's the GAME. See, then what happens is that the "users shake the iPhone to stop the crying until Xs appear on the eyes of the baby." All of that so-not-tasteless fun for the low, low price of just 99 cents! Well, until Apple pulled the app from the store and apologized to anyone who was or who might have been offended.

OK, at first I kind of thought that there might have been a bit of overreaction to this. After all, it's a game, yes? Well, yes, but not a good one! I guess I thought it would have been some sort of cartoon rendition of the baby. Not so much. No, it looked more like the little adorable Gerber baby that I've NEVER wanted to shake. Behold!

Yeah, see, that's just creepy. And odd that someone would come up with such a thing. I mean, congratulations to the person for having a marketable skill, but my God, man, can't you use it for something else?

Then I was r
eminded of other apps that made it into the App Store (and a few that did not) that were rejected by Apple after the expression of horror and outrage by the folks of the same name. One of those was the "I Am Rich" app. All this piece of crap consisted of was a picture of a glowing red ruby in the middle of the screen. The description read: "The red icon on your iPhone or iPod Touch always reminds you (and others when you show it to them) that you were able to afford this. ... It's a work of art with no hidden function at all." All of that pretentiousness for the low, low price of only $999.99! For reals. And if you're shocked by that, you're going to pass out when I tell you that eight morons actually paid for and downloaded it. (There's a name for people like that. It's a name probably not appropriate for this venue, but let's just say that it would be the same name as a fairly popular nickname for folks named Richards.)

Of course, since that went over so well and received a bunch of publicity
(because isn't that what the news outlets are supposed to report on?) someone else had to make an "I Am Poor" app. All that one did was show a picture of some Top Ramen, macaroni and cheese and tuna fish. No word on how much it cost, but it was rejected by Apple before making it into the App Store. (And really, how much sense does that make anyway? You're going to have an app that says "I Am Poor" on your six hundred dollar phone? Spare me.)

There was the inexplicable rejection of the "Obama Trampoline" game, where you choose your politicians from either Sarah Palin, Barack Obama, or a pants-less Bill Clinton and then have them jump on a trampoline in the Oval Office. Apple claimed it was rejected because " ridiculed public officials." Well, YES! Of course it does! Public ridicule is part of being a politician! It's nothing new! (It's also the rationale behind why you can't have the Shoe Throwing app or the Freedom Time app, which counts down the time until the Bush administration was officially over.) However, I deem this rejection inexplicable because there IS an app called "Pocket Arnold" featuring various sound bites and clips of words and phrases said by the Governator of California himself. It's sort of like a make your own crank call factory. No word on whether or not the Governator is wearing pants and Apple did not explain itself. Because it's the king of everything.

And I cannot for the life of me imagine why in the world Apple would reject an iBoobs app! It's just like what it sounds like it is. A pair of very full breasts, clad in a bikini top, appear on your iPhone screen and when you shake the screen you shake them as well! It's pure genius, I tell you! But Apple didn't call it pure genius. They called it an app with "inappropriate sexual content", not to mention "obscene, pornographic, offensive, or defamatory content." Huh. And all of that even knowing that the breasts were not even real, rather they were computer generated. (I've gotta get me some computer generated breasts. You know, in case I need a spare or something.) And if you must see for this civilization ruiner, there's a video over yonder on YouTube that you can check out by clicking the handy link there.

There's also Slasher, an app which featured a picture of a bloody knife on your iPhone screen and when you moved your arm in a way as to simulate a stabbing motion, the app would play the "horror sound". I can only imagine that the "horror sound" is similar to that which I have dubbed the "pay attention music". It's those ominous two notes every five to ten seconds or so. Dun-dunn. Dun-dunn. But for all I know, it could just be someone screaming (probably one of those horror and outrage folks). The reasoning given for not having this gem in the App Store was the same reason for not having iBoobs in the App Store. That reason being, of course, that Apple is a bit holier than thou on occasion, apparently.

So if all of those apps are inappropriate for the Apple App Store, you have to be wondering what IS appropriate? I'll tell you what's appropriate. Farting apps. That's correct. Apps that simulate human flatulence are HUGE at the App Store. There are no less than FIFTY such apps (and yet only ONE way to actually BE flatulent. Go figure.) iFart Mobile (I swear!) has been downloaded over 13,000 times by December 23, 2008 at the tune (no pun intended, I swear) of $0.99 each. With Apple taking a 30% cut, the creators of iFart Mobile netted around $9,198 according to Venture Beat Digital Media. But wait! There's more! On Christmas Day, 2008, there were almost 40,000 downloads of the Fart Machine, netting those folks close to $30 grand! For an app that makes your phone sound like it's farting! U-S-A! U-S-A! U-S-A!

Well, OK then. Good to know we live in a world where baby shaking simulators are not OK. Not sure about the world we live in where we flock to download flatulence replications by the tens of thousands. Definitely sure that I need to get myself an iPhone or an iPod Touch relatively soon, however, as I hear that there are a myriad of apps which simulate cow bells, fake lighters (for fake concerts, I'm assuming), dice rollers, coin flippers and a virtual level (so you'll never be anywhere and not know if a surface is perfectly flat). As I'm sure you know, one can never have too many cowbells. Flatulence simulators, yes. Clanging bovine neck devices? Never.

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Tarra Slovan said...

Such a worthy post deserves a comment. People are very stingy with comments,it seems.

I just learned that there is a thing called a gizmajig and my head has exploded all over my carpet.

grannyann said...

I don't have an iphone but my son does. He however does not download all that junk. His is mainly for business - he can check his emails from his iphone I think. I can't imagine all the garbage things people must invent - you can see what all they did for computers so I am sure iphones must have an many.

Mare said...

Thanks for the comment! And for the compliment!

There's an app for just about anything over there. The sheer numbers of things that people come up with just floor me. I'm in the wrong racket.