If you haven’t already discovered it, Vine has some pretty inappropriate content embedded in its video-sharing features. The popular app, currently listed as “Editor’s Choice” on the Android app market is being used for more than G-rated video sharing.
Users of Vine navigate the site by way of searching under hashtags that people can follow and subscribe to. It didn’t take long for people to come up with and locate hashtags like #sex or #porn and it took an even shorter amount of time for users to find and follow those hashtags and comment under the video clips, even adding to that particular hashtag. The “underground” world of Vine spread like wildfire with some phones that use word prediction technologies suggesting illicit terms as opposed to what would be a more common search word. iPhone enthusiasts are waiting to see if Apple will take action to ban Vine from the iPhone app market. Despite the obvious findings and content on the site, Apple has not yet banned Vine or taken it off the app market, although they cracked down hard on a similar application called 500px which was being used to share the same X-rated content.
What’s interesting is Apple’s stance about anything on their product that can or might be deemed as pornography. Steve Jobs even went so far as to say it is their moral and ethical obligation to keep that type of content off the iPhone. When the app 500px was banned, Jobs also outright stated that if you want to have porn on your phone, you should buy an Android.
But despite these suggestive content findings on Vine dating back to the beginning of this year, the app still remains on the iPhone app market. This is making some iPhone users question if Apple was really serious about cracking down on X-rated content, and truly felt the responsibility to make iPhones safe and appropriate for all ages.
But there is a much bigger problem with user-submitted content in general which will always be a possibility if people can upload original content. Many advocates for Apple say that it would be impossible to ban every application that could lead to this kind of usage. That would mean banning Safari on iPhones, and even Twitter since it has been used for adult content as well. The issue is not the application but the people using the application.
While it is great for Apple to take such a morally profound stance against pornography on the iPhone it runs into problems when it bands or pulls some apps while allowing others to thrive in their popular and profitable app market.