iPhone App Store Nanny State, Twitter Edition*

The Apple (AAPL) iPhone App approval mouse has fallen off its treadmill again.

Apple has rejected an update to Tweetie, an iPhone Twitter app, because “there’s an offensive word in the TRENDS” section of Twitter’s search engine, developer Loren Brichter said on Twitter. In other words, Apple blocked the new Tweetie because people on the Internet were using bad language when Apple was reviewing the app.

For the umpteenth time, yes, this is Apple’s app platform, and it can do whatever it wants. So it’s fine if Apple wants to protect the public from “unpleasant” drawings of naked cavemen or e-books with f-words in them.

But this is ridiculous! Twitter app developers can control Twitter’s content as little as Apple’s developers can control what people do with Safari, its Web browser — or its email and SMS apps.

Yes, the App Store has a huge success, and every service has its kinks. But sometimes it seems like Apple isn’t putting as much thought into the App Store as its developers are.

Update: Brichter says Apple has righted its wrong, and has allowed him to resubmit the app. That was a good, quick move on Apple’s part.

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