Censorship of the iTunes Store

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This article is about external censorship of the iTunes Store. For censorship carried out by Apple, see Censorship by Apple.

Censorship of the iTunes Store refers to external attempts at blocking access to digital content distributed through the iTunes Store.

App Store[edit]


In 2010, the Australian Labor Party announced its intent to subject the 220,000 mobile apps available on the Australia App Store to Australian Classification Board regulations, which require that developers pay evaluation fees ranging from $470 to $2040.[1] A 2011 article in the Sydney Morning Herald clarified that "Australians will soon be able to complain about mobile game apps they take offence to and get them removed from app stores such as Apple's iTunes if they're deemed 'refused classification'. And if mobile game apps are classified anything above MA15+ and the government doesn't introduce an R18+ games classification (which it plans to vote on in July), then any game app rated over MA15+ will also be refused classification." Sentiments were also expressed over other apps: "What is unclear, however, is how the Classification Board will classify apps that aren't necessarily games like Grindr, an app for gay users which uses [GPS] to find nearby males".[2]


The China App Store was affected by connection-level censorship until an unknown point in time when Apple enabled a HTTPS-by-default configuration.[3] Searches for 'VPN', for example, would cause the connection to be reset.[3]

According to the Global Times, the Ministry of Industry and Information Technology said on 13 December 2012 that it planned to "strengthen regulation of China's mobile applications market" in the near future.[4] The Shanghai-based IT Times quoted Chen Jinqiao as saying that the plans included "[bringing] app developers under supervision and [establishing] a real-name registration system for independent developers.[4]


  1. ^ Bodey, Michael (16 August 2010). "Apps and games to face censor, says ALP". The Australian. Retrieved 2013-06-02. 
  2. ^ Grubb, Ben (9 March 2011). "Government to censor iTunes app store". The Sydney Morning Herald. Retrieved 2013-06-02. 
  3. ^ a b Muncaster, Phil (21 December 2012). "Apple shifts iTunes to HTTPS, sidesteps China's censors". The Register. Retrieved 2013-06-02. 
  4. ^ a b Yang, Chen (13 December 2012). "MIIT to tighten app regulations". Global Times (People's Daily). Retrieved 2013-06-02. 

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