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Sep 02 2010

Apple censors Lady Gaga’s pro-gay tweets

Apple has just come out with Ping, their new music social media network (aka a clone of Last.fm*). They decided to use Lady Gaga as their example on what following a celebrity page would look like.
The problem is when you compare it to here actual tweets and see which ones they conveniently cut out:
Oh Apple. Gambling and strip clubs make the cut, but not gay rights? Nope, chop those out with the references to hookers, manwhores, and gingers.

Seriously, if your motivation is to not show any political tweets, why not find a point in time where she made three non-political PG rated tweets in a row? …Okay, this is Lady Gaga we’re talking about, so maybe you could have just chosen some other famous singer. Instead you choose a PR disaster.

And just when I thought an iPhone was in my future. May have to reconsider an Android…

*Now you can spy on what music I listen to too, woo.

(Via violet blue (NSFW))

36 comments

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  1. 1
    Beyond Dimensions

    Oh, Apple, you and your big brother-esque shenanigans. Makes me glad android based phones are becoming increasingly popular.

  2. 2
    Ayoub

    Yeah… I’ll stick with my Blackberry…

  3. 3
    Amilianna

    I note that it also didn’t post the Kids’ Choice tweet, whatever that manwhore link was and the #Gagapalooza tweet. Could it be that rather than them cutting those all out maliciously there was some kind of time issue? Because, actually, looking at the “compare” list, if they were just doing the last 3 tweets, the gay rights stuff wouldn’t have made the cut anyway.Also – yay for the death of prop 8. Just saying.

  4. 4
    Bob

    It’s for your own good!

  5. 5
    LS

    I haven’t checked my facts on this, but I’m predisposed toward hating Apple anyway. The two Steves were great in their day, Woz is still pretty awesome, but the modern company is just…awful. Just terrible.

  6. 6
    Citizensmith

    By increasingly popular you mean actually more popular than the iPhone now. Funny, its almost like the lack of choice Apple allow, 1 phone on 1 provider, somehow limits them compared to Android.

  7. 7
    Citizensmith

    I wonder when Apple will remove web browsers from its devices to avoid the possibility someone may use one to look at porn.

  8. 8
    Libel

    Add this to the reasons of why I will never use apple.

  9. 9
    Whitney Drake

    I’d agree with you about them not picking and choosing if it didn’t skip from one of her tweets to the VMA noms- which skips over at least 5 tweets.

  10. 10
    Carl Viñas

    Woz was at the media event yesterday.

  11. 11
    Cfmilner

    What Loli said!Oh, and definitely look at Android. I’d recommend a HTC handset running Android. I’ve lost count of the times I’ve said, “I love my phone” when I discover a new Android delight :)

  12. 12
    Whitney Drake

    Jen, you might want to clarify that this is just on their promo images- there is no censorship on her actual Ping page. Which sadly is filled with spam comments.But really, if they’d wanted to demo a Ping page on their site, they should have picked someone they wouldn’t think was controversial. I’m tired of their antics- especially when they think nobody will pay attention.

  13. 13
    Beyond Dimensions

    I was being subtle with my second digg at apple. Also, most people feel overwhelmed and confused when given choices, Apple is merely sparing them the task of using their brains. :DTotally no offense to Apple users. At all.

  14. 14
    the_Siliconopolitan

    Well, hipsters hate teh ghey, I’m sure.I’m sorta starting to salivate over the Samsung GalaxyS, but given my utter lack of need, I can hardly justify the expense.Apparently they’re coming out with an Ipad clone this Autumn. With a much handier paperback size. I’ve said I that I’d get a smartphone/ereader when they made them to fit in a pocket like an oldfashioned book. Why are they suddenly starting to listen to what I have to say?

  15. 15
    Frank Bellamy

    You should look at Android. I got one a few months ago and it is incredibly useful. There are apps for everything, and they’re mostly free.

  16. 16
    Rhacodactylus

    I’m completely offended by this!!! Who on earth would censor her tweets when that time could be spent trying to censor her music! Hackneyed pop songs are sure as hell more harmful than gays.Lol, and don’t yell at me, I’m clearly joking

  17. 17
    grolby

    Apple is aggressively anti-controversial, to the point of being a bit obsessive; for example, this. This is in spite of the fact that Steve Jobs has made donations in the past to Democratic politicians, donations which are of course public information. They’re very concerned with not getting potential customers angry with them. After all, they do want to sell a lot of products. It can be pretty annoying at times (like now), even if it is restricted to the promotional images (which it is). This in particular is really stupid; they could have picked a less-controversial artist. But of course, Lady Gaga fits the image that they want to project as being cool and cutting edge. So they decided to censor the images. Silly.That said… I don’t see how this is problematic enough to rule out use of their products altogether, especially given that the alternative is a Google product. In the big picture of what owning either of these devices means to me, the user, the complete lack of regard for the user privacy that Google has repeatedly shown makes them, in my mind, a far more threatening company than Apple. When Apple starts restricting what users can say on their devices and their services, I’ll start getting seriously worried. So far, there’s no evidence that they have any intention of doing so. There’s also no evidence to suggest that Google will stop its aggressive, invasive data-mining from its users (including me, by the way: gmail, Reader and Calendar are too damn useful to avoid).Google is the biggest single gatekeeper to the world’s data, not just now but in history. That scares me, and should scare you, far more than idiotic censorship of promo images.

  18. 18
    LS

    Awesome != perfect.

  19. 19
    Lexrst

    …aaaaand it comes around full circle. Back in the mid-nineties, Apple wanted to build a support center in Williamson County Texas (just north of Austin). County commissioners voted against any tax breaks for the facility (effectively killing the project) because Apple provided benefits to the partners of gay employees.Hows about them apples?

  20. 20
    lomifeh

    Before the random apple hate gets too bad. That’s a promo page not the actual lady gaga page. I can see them cutting up a promo page for general consumption. Nothing much to see here IMHO. The lady gaga page is not censored. As for those touting android and google. Google is a Corp that is out to make money. If you think they are your friend you are mistaken. Look at the Verizon/google net neutrality proposal. Look at their dealings with and caving to China. Look at what they did with buzz on the rollout. If you prefer android fine, but don’t think Google actual cares about you, people are the commodity, ads the product and advertisers their customers.

  21. 21
    Philip Bowles

    Curiously, I tweeted your story and have entered into some bizarro world where I am having a “discussion” with the Twitter account of @Steven_P_Jobs who claims that “Ping is not linked with Twitter, all status updates must be entered manually, Lady Gaga obviously chose to omit them” and that “And that story has made a story out of thin air”. Make of that what you will.

  22. 22
    brentdax

    Please beware of friendly fire. Apple has come out swinging for its gay and lesbian employees in the past—in fact, the company itself made a $100,000 donation to the No On 8 campaign (Google’s founders donated a little more, but that was their own money, not the company’s). If they’re not willing to alienate customers in their marketing material, it’s not because their heart is in the wrong place—it’s just a little more than they’re willing to put on the line. Thank them for what they’re willing to give and criticize the many organizations who won’t even do that much.

  23. 23
    Vanessa

    I’m leaning on the side of “Who cares?”Ever think that the cut had nothing to do with gay rights?

  24. 24
    Thilinab

    as long as you’re using apple’s web browser and the porn sites that are approved by apple, they won’t try to censor you.

  25. 25
    Peter Madsen

    *Now you can spy on what music I listen to too, woo.

    Wooot! Disturbed shows up on your list at number 333!… which is 332 places too low, lol.

  26. 26
    Jucas Cassella

    android is quite linux, so go for it!

  27. 27
    LovelyMonsters

    Surely one can make the argument that her hackneyed pop songs are merely the currency she uses to gain entrance to the minds of the young in order to promote Teh Gay Agenda. Or the excuse to wear dozens of bizarre costumes. I’m willing to tolerate them for either reason.

  28. 28
    Ben

    I thought all of the apple haters out there ought to be aware that they actually donated $100,000 to the no on prop 8 campaign. http://www.tuaw.com/2008/10/24… In the press announcement at the time they explained that they considered it a civil rights issue, as I would hope you do too. Feel free to buy or not buy whatever phone you want guys, but if how “gay-friendly” a company is really enters into your decision making process, then ruling out apple is just stupid.and I’m kinda disappointed in the “skeptics” here. Way to judge an entire group of people based on one screen shot of a twitter feed.

  29. 29
    lomifeh

    Was messing with ping last night. It definitely doesn’t tie to Twitter.

  30. 30
    Mark Eagleton

    Ping has no public API and is not tied to Twitter or Facebook. Artists and/or their management team must manually post updates to Ping. If there are post inconsistencies between and artist’s social networks, it is likely the choice of the artist.Apple has a long history of supporting equal rights of the LGBT population and their LGBT employees. In addition to supporting the no on prop 8 campaign, they were one of the first companies in California to provide benefits for same-sex domestic partners in 1993, as reference by Lexrst above:http://www.aegis.org/news/ct/1

  31. 31
    Amilianna

    What I more meant by time issue (which, I realize didn’t come across very clearly – I blame having the flu) was an issue in which during a certain amount of time they were unable to see those tweets for some reason – ie twitter went down, the tweets came in out of order, I don’t know – twitter goes wonky in weird ways for me kinda frequently.Mostly what I was meaning is that perhaps their jump wasn’t necessarily intentional as if all they wanted to do was leave off the gay tweets, all they had to do was post the top 3. Or skip the third for the fourth. Or the fifth. The gay tweets were 6 – 8 and it’s only noticeable because they added the 9th tweet. And of the other tweets that were skipped, one of them was about the Kids’ Choice Awards, so if they were trying to find ones that were “awww!” or whatever they were looking for, it seems strange that they would skip that one.That’s all – just that I don’t know that it’s a forgone conclusion that they intentionally skipped the tweets because they were about gay rights.

  32. 32
    kiwiyogurt

    I’m glad other people came and pointed it out to you, but yeah, Apple has donated a lot to defeat Prop 8, and they were pretty public about that too – I’m remember being somewhat surprised, b/c I wondered if that would cause them to lose customers over it. It would be silly if they lost pro-gay customers too.This post seriously deserves an edit, especially since what a couple commenters said above makes a lot more sense for what happened.

  33. 33
    huxi

    I’m with Mark Eagleton and kiwiyogurt.There is no auto-post of Tweets.For example, http://twitter.com/ladygaga/status/23027935862 was pinged two hours later while http://twitter.com/ladygaga/status/23035974894 wasn’t pinged at all.I have no problem with deserved Apple bashing for their strange morality concerning apps in the AppStore.This, however, is undeserved Apple bashing based on an non-issue.

  34. 34
    Camilla Stenmark

    “This, however, is undeserved Apple bashing based on an non-issue. ” well said @huxiand, like people have already mentioned http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/… Apple donated 100 k to fight Prop. 8

  35. 35
    svn

    I’m so happy not living in that #guarded clean apple world, prefer #freedom! ;) Heil Führer Jobs!

  36. 36
    svn

    ..and the “bad Microsoft’s” Bill Gates donated a few billions! So what’s 100k donated by apple – nothing more than a (very) cheap pr!Apple bashing? No need to.. ;)

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