Apple is changing the rules inside the App Store again after activists challenged the previous standard that prevented developers from creating marijuana-themed apps. Now though, the rules are changing yet again – to disallow developers from using photos of guns in screenshots, or images of the game in question within the App Store. MassRoots was the organization behind the petition and eventual reversal of regulation that had previously stymied individuals from creating such apps – but with the increase in traffic and creation of marijuana based games – like social networks for stoners, and dating websites as well – it became a difficult thing to block. Especially with the United States’ continuing efforts to relax laws around marijuana use. It just so happened that MassRoots was also the developer behind one of the apps that were removed. MassRoots noted, “We are excited to begin a new chapter with Apple in which was can work together to affect meaningful societal change.”
However, those who are fighting for gun rights probably will not be making the same headway as MassRoots did with their efforts. Instead, the United States has been pushing toward a more closely regulated space when it comes to guns – and since Apple has such a large influence in the United States it would be highly unlikely that the company would allow any such graphics that condone gun use, to be seen in the App Store. That being said, Apple has noted regarding some of the marijuana apps will only be available for download in states where it is legal to use such a drug. The company will use the geo-location feature to determine where the user is and that will ultimately dictate who can download it and where they can download it.
Clearly though, this is a move in which anyone could have seen coming. Apple could not fight this for very long as it’s become culturally accepted, as well as the lessening legal ramifications of using or possessing marijuana. Groups like MassRoots, who are working for change on this front though, while connecting people digitally as well, it’s important to note that their intent is to not divide, but actually unite.