Honestly, most people aren’t that surprised that Apple decided to pull “Phone Story”, most people are surprised that it actually got into Apple’s app store in the first place. The game sheds light on the allegedly questionable practices that many claim are prevalent in the manufacturing of numerous electronic devices, such as the iPhone. According to its creators, the game explores related indirectly or otherwise to smartphone manufacturing, including the enslavement of workers in the Congo mining electronic components mineral coltan, the mistreatment of assembly line workers, and the toxic nature of disposing of smartphones.
According to the game’s developer Molleindustria, Apple has explained its decision to pull the game by saying that it violates section 15.2, 16.1, 21.1, 21.2 from the app store guidelines. One of Apple’s big guidelines says something to the affect that any app that depicts violence or abuse of children will be rejected (…) excessively objectionable or crude content. Well this pretty much sucks for Molleindustria who had planned for 70% of the game’s revenue to be redirected to “organizations that are fighting corporate abuses”.
This kind of controversy isn’t anything new for Molleindustia though as they have triggered similar controversies with games like Operation: Pedopriest which targeted the Catholic church and was subsequently branded as illegal by the Italian parliament, while Islamic groups successfully pushed for the banning of La Molleindustria’s religion-themed beat ’em-up Jesus vs. Mohammed.