Apple’s recent response to Charleston shooting by banning all historical games from the Apple App Store bearing the Confederate Flag is being considered as a stupid step by many. Even though the ban was later toned down, this step from Apple received rave reviews from every corner of the society.
If you have been viewing the news as of late, you’ll know about the huge debate that is going on in the U.S over the role of the Confederate Flag in contemporary America. This turn of event took place, because of the racist killing of nine people at a church in Charleston, South Carolina. This led to a widespread campaign to remove the Confederate battle flag from public areas, government buildings, stores, etc. Even the South Carolina, Governor Nikki Haley demanded the removal of Confederate battle flag from the state’s Capitol grounds.
Various Point Of Views
While numerous citizens see it as an indication of the pre Civil War treacheries while others see it essentially as an approach to respect the troopers who laid their lives for the Confederacy. The black Americans, consider the flag as a symbol of slavery. While some Americans see it as an important historical event.
Some states like Alabama and South Carolina, who decided to take out the Confederate flags, which fly outside their government buildings is indeed a bold step. In any case, those flags represented a state-authorized underwriting of everything the Confederacy stood for: Slavery, persecution, and conspiracy.The long and the short of it is the history is shocking.
Companies Who Decided To Do Away With The Confederate Flag
Many large US organizations, such as Wal-Mart, eBay, Sears, and Amazon, have effectively banned the sale of any Confederate flag merchandise as a response to the latest events which took place. After these private sector organizations, it was the turn of Apple who also joined the bandwagon and decided to pull out all Civil War games from the App Store. According, to a statement which was issued by Apple, they said that they were just zapped the apps that feature flags “in offensive or mean-spirited ways.” Apple also clarified that it would not ban those apps which would display the Confederate flag for educational or historical uses.
The affected game developers received a notice from Apple after their apps were removed from the App Store. The company added that, “ We encourage you to review your app concept and incorporate different content and features that are in compliance with the App Store Review Guidelines.”
Removing Apps Nothing New From Apple -
If you are an avid gamer, then you will know that this move doesn’t come as a great surprise. A few years ago, games like Hunted Cow, Ultimate General: Gettysburg – Civil War games were no longer available in the App store. Apple is renowned for going after the hatchet in the matter of political issues and dismissed Hunted Cow’s Tank Battle 1942 for portraying Germans and Russians as foes. Even four years ago, Apple removed an iPhone app Phone Story which was a dark, satirical mini-game collection that exposed the harsh side of smartphone production.
Instead of cherry picking individual apps which used the flag in a questionable way, Apple decided to do away with all the apps which was much easier to them. While Apple has removed Confederate Flag apps from Apple Store, Google is yet to take any step in this.
Apple views video games in a different light which was proved when it took action against the games, that included these symbols. Exact historical games got banned yet not Primal Scream’s Give Out But Don’t Give Up. Not John Dooley’s Confederate War journal. Apple singled games out and adequately said that diversions are not media and games are not discourse. Even in 2015, games are not equal.
Huge Difference From Art and Reality
Even in 2015, many games are being censored. The American society is moving towards a point, where they are dismissing the racist images of their past, as the Confederate flag so unmistakably seems to be. Yet, establishing a sweeping boycott on specific images and flags in books, magazines and video games will not be able to help anyone. In any case, selling art and chronicled materials is unmistakably not quite the same as an official support of a scornful image.
There should be a line between arts and reality. In the real world, we should condemn the offensive and harsh cruelties. This is mainly done for sensitivity, and also for the promotion of multiplicity. But, in the arts, these symbols are used for a specific reason. Similar citations can be done for swastika, which is thoroughly offensive in the real, as it represented Nazi cruelty, but in the arts it rendered a value. They have a value beyond who they represented.
Historical items highlighting Confederate imagery on eBay or a video game that portrays the American Civil War on Apple’s App Store must be seen in an alternate connection regarding private subjects.
Sad State Of Games
Games as an art is under risk of facing the axe. A year ago, GamerGate crapfest atomized numerous an independent game developer attempting to utilize games for some other issues also. A mixed bag of other comparative hogwash over the Internet affirm that the status of games as an art feels almost on the verge. There’s an impressive development all over the spectrum to push games back to the status of customer items instead of an art, preoccupations only and to sideline their all the more intriguing and trial voices.
Challenge For Game Developers
These types of ban leave the developers with two options. Either they have to go for producing a new version which will have the subjects toned down. Alternatively, they can change the required content and wait for its review and approval.
In the recent move taken by Apple, the developers will either have to remove or replace the Confederate flag from their apps. Due to these changes, which has been implemented by Apple, many gaming app developers or companies are facing huge losses. This is because they are not getting their part of the revenue from the customers, who love to play historical strategy game. It would also mean censoring the historical things and rewriting the facts.
One game developer HexWar, is keen to revise their games by replacing the flags. But the changes which need to be implemented can take weeks, and after that the Apple review process might take another two weeks.