Since this report was published, Apple has decided to approve the app for the App Store. Read the updated story here.
Updated at 3:10 p.m. PDT with comment from Tweetie developer.
Remember the time your mom withheld your dessert because you said a bad word? Apple is doing something along those lines, with one major difference: it's because a bad word has been heard in the neighborhood.
According to iLounge, Apple has rejected version 1.3 of Tweetie, the popular Twitter client application for the iPhone and iPod Touch. The reason? An offensive word appeared in Twitter's Trends data.
Somewhat similar to Google Trends, Twitter's Trends is a list of the most frequently used topics or words on Twitter at any given moment. This means this live list of words/topics changes constantly (I checked it just now and the offensive word--which starts with an "F," by the way--has gone). Yet, somehow it still bothers Apple enough to take action.
It seems that Apple, as a matter of policy, does not comment on the approval process for Apple applications. We have, however, contacted the company, and will update this post if we hear back.
In an e-mail to CNET News, however, Tweetie developer Loren Brichter said Apple quoted this part of the company's guidelines as a reason for the decision:
"Applications must not contain any obscene, pornographic, offensive, or defamatory content or materials of any kind (text, graphics, images, photographs, etc.), or other content or materials that in Apple's reasonable judgement may be found objectionable by iPhone or iPod Touch users."
"The question then becomes whether is it an individual app's responsibility to censor everything it gets from the Internet," Brichter said. "Twitter themselves create the "top trends" list; Tweetie just displays it. The consensus is pretty much that it would be ridiculous to expect that.
"At the same time," the developer added, "this could have been just a goof on Apple's part. The App Store is still very young, they're working out the kinks."
Here's the long list of improvements in Tweetie 1.3 that all you naughty Twitterers with iPhones and iPod Touches are gonna miss out on--at least for now:… Read more