I have been following the coverage on the removal of the Manhattan Declaration App from the App Store over the Thanksgiving Holiday. I understand and appreciate that Apple, Inc. owns and controls the vehicle and process by which apps are sold to those of us with iOS devices or (with the introduction of the Mac App Store, OS X).
As a "signer" of the Manhattan Declaration and a devoted Mac user with the Manhattan Declaration App on my iPod Touch, however, I am concerned that the decision to pull the app was ill-advised. The Manhattan Declaration’s emails are claiming that the App was not only approved in October but was given a 4+ rating for "no objectionable content." Although I understand having language in the terms of service that give you discretion when "large groups of people" are offended (ie: some of the violent apps that advocate illegal activity, pornography, etc. that you have rightfully removed before); dropping an app that highlights the work of a legitimate public policy advocacy group that respectfully engages in a public debate from the perspective of traditional Judeo/Christian values and whose values and perspectives have been endorsed by the public in every vote (33 across the country on gay marriage alone!) and poll nationwide seems inappropriate.
The gay rights community and others are more than willing to bring various controversial and counter-cultural debates to Legislatures and courts around the nation. All I’m asking is that those who’s perspectives differ from your own (or from those who complained about this app) have their voices respected. I would not ask Apple Inc to remove an app advocating gay marriage if it shared a similar tact as the Manhattan Declaration’s app does.
This App isn’t propagating hate and isn’t "anti-"anyone. It is simply opposed to public policy it sees as incompatible with sound governance and/or natural law.
Please look through the app yourself (you’ll see it isn’t "hate" filled) and reinstate the Manhattan Declaration App. I’m a proud Mac user, love your company and its products, and am hopeful that you’ll do the right thing and restore free speech for an organization that speaks for the values of a vast majority of Americans…and your customers.
Thank you for your consideration (and keep up the great work on innovative products – I can’t wait to order my Macbook Air very soon!).