Apple’s track record regarding its controversial App Store selection criteria just got muddier, after it approved an app called “Manhattan Declaration”, which is a “call of Christian conscience” against gay-marriage
According to Huffington Post the Manhattan Declaration app is formed like a questionnaire which asks a person’s view about same sex marriage. If the answer does not confirm to the group’s viewpoint it promptly notifies that the answer is incorrect.
The app was released in October, and the Manhattan Declaration’s blog says: “The text of the declaration takes great strides to explain that we love people of all faiths and lifestyles, but that we cannot agree with them all.”
Manhattan Declaration movement started in 2009 with an endorsement from key Christian leaders in an attempt to counter efforts to marginalize Christian views about issues like “sanctity of life, the dignity of marriage as the union of one man and one woman, and religious liberty.” The manifesto was originally signed by 150 prominent Christian leaders. The movement stated that “Each of these signers has committed to speak and act in defense of biblical truths with respect to the three issues it addresses.”
However, much of the ire is targeted at Apple which has approved the app. Until now much of Apple’s App Store policy was focused on keeping off apps like Google Voice, Flash apps and other apps which it deems obscene and unsuitable for children. It has constantly come under fire over the autonomy that Apple exerts over app selection. The anti-gay app is eliciting negative comments this time not for dismissal but for approval of an app.
The app has been given a 4+ rating by Apple that signifies that it does not consider the material offensive.
PinkPaper.com derided the app as a “homophobic iPhone app” and further said: “It asks its users to sign up against gay rights and marriage and is based on the Manhattan Declaration, an anti-gay manifesto released in 2009.”
Another site TFTS added apolitical flavor to the controversy stating “Anyone who had Apple pegged as a left-leaning, progressive company, inasmuch as Apple’s political agenda can be discerned or even form the subject of a discussion, of course, may find their impression severely shaken.”
However, the chances of getting an app removed from Apple App Store could be as laborious as getting them listed on the store.