Apple to nix apps that tip off drunk drivers

Jun 09, 2011 By PETER SVENSSON , AP Technology Writer

(AP) -- After pressure from four U.S. senators, Apple Inc. has said it will start rejecting iPhone applications that tip drivers off about police checkpoints for drunken driving.

Apple updated its app developer guidelines Wednesday to exclude such apps. On Thursday, some DUI apps were still available in the App Store, but Apple usually gives developers a chance to update their apps so they can conform to the new guidelines before booting them.

The apps often combine warnings about DUI checkpoints with warnings about and red-light cameras. Users of the applications help create the warnings by registering the locations.

An Apple spokesman had no comment on the change in the guidelines, and wouldn't say why the change was made.

Senators Harry Reid (D-Nev.), Charles E. Schumer (D-N.Y.), Frank R. Lautenberg (D-N.J.), and Tom Udall (D-N.M.) asked Apple, Research In Motion Ltd., the maker of the BlackBerry, and Inc. to remove DUI-avoidance apps in March. RIM complied, but Google refused.

Google runs an for phones that use its Android software. The company places far fewer restrictions on than Apple does.

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User comments : 8

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Arkaleus
3 / 5 (2) Jun 09, 2011
Marching onward to our brave new world, Apple again takes the lead in proving to the world that becoming rich and successful makes you evil. I really am tired of Apple's petty tyrannies making the news. Who cares what they think in Cupertino?
Liberte
1 / 5 (1) Jun 09, 2011
Since when was Apple invested with the mandate to censor its own high-paying, loyal-to-the-point-of blindness customers? Is Apple a media content company that thinks it has to be the standard bearer of political correctness, as defined by political parties? Stop censorship, promote individual freedom and use your judgment as to whom best represents your freedom, Apple or Google.
tthb
not rated yet Jun 09, 2011
Of course; just all too much; don't know at all; . . . . . if Jesus is'nt running the Show, or at right, yes, nothing looks good, ahead
Skeptic_Heretic
1 / 5 (1) Jun 09, 2011
Marching onward to our brave new world, Apple again takes the lead in proving to the world that becoming rich and successful makes you evil. I really am tired of Apple's petty tyrannies making the news. Who cares what they think in Cupertino?

Are you really supporting drunk driving?
Since when was Apple invested with the mandate to censor its own high-paying, loyal-to-the-point-of blindness customers? Is Apple a media content company that thinks it has to be the standard bearer of political correctness, as defined by political parties? Stop censorship, promote individual freedom and use your judgment as to whom best represents your freedom, Apple or Google.
You too?
Liberte
not rated yet Jun 10, 2011
@SkepticHeretic: No, I'm not supporting drunk driving. A better question would be: Which comes first, individual freedom or the elimination of drunk driving? In my case, the answer would be unequivocal: individual freedom always comes first. (Then again, we may disagree: I am an Android user.)
Skeptic_Heretic
1 / 5 (1) Jun 11, 2011
@SkepticHeretic: No, I'm not supporting drunk driving.
Then why are you supporting an application that tips off drunk drivers specifically?
A better question would be: Which comes first, individual freedom or the elimination of drunk driving?
How much individual freedom do you have if a drunk driver kills you while you're headed to the store?
Liberte
not rated yet Jun 11, 2011
Hi Skeptic: I support this application not because it tips off drunk drivers specifically, but because it tips off citizens generally about the state of our democracy. If you were stopped at a DUI checkpoint, would you have a right to call your spouse, or parents, who were still at the party, to warn them, or would you cheer along with the State when they are caught, even without ever endangering anyone? What about if you're an activist concerned about what social/racial areas are targeted for DUI checkpoints? Shouldn't you be able to verify where and when your representative powers enforce a political mandate? A democracy is never black & white, it's made of shades of gray. I blame Apple for not getting it - or possibly getting it too well, which makes it a whole lot worse.

My last 2 cents, and it was a pleasure exchanging ideas with you nonetheless.
Skeptic_Heretic
1 / 5 (1) Jun 11, 2011
If you were stopped at a DUI checkpoint, would you have a right to call your spouse, or parents, who were still at the party, to warn them, or would you cheer along with the State when they are caught, even without ever endangering anyone?
Being a person who believes in responsibility, I wouldn't allow friends or family members to drive drunk in the first place.
What about if you're an activist concerned about what social/racial areas are targeted for DUI checkpoints?
I'd pull the scheduled checkpoint list which is filed with the state at the end of the evening and run the stats.
A democracy is never black & white, it's made of shades of gray.
You keep saying democracy but this isn't a democracy, it's a republic. In this republic, distributing software that interferes with public safety by enabling drunk drivers to escape capture and potentially kill other civilians is a crime.

Likewise on the exchange, thanks for your statements.