Apple's walled garden approach to app store management brings with it a certain set of expectations.
The Cupertino giant is notoriously fussy about checking each and every application that goes on sale on the App Store, and so – perhaps unfairly – it's newsworthy when something slips through the cracks.
This is a topic Carter Dotson explored for us in some detail this week, in a column that highlighted Apple's checkered track-record of certification.
But just days after that was published, a more serious example of Apple's certification shortcomings appeared.
Boyfriend Maker has a 4+ age rating, and promises players the chance to "create and chat with your dream boyfriend!" In effect, the app is a simple chat bot accompanied by a customisable on-screen avatar.
The bot's tendency to produce bizarre non-sequiturs has made it a social media hit, but users also report that it's prone to producing explicitly sexual and violent responses.
Given the game's intended audience, this is clearly inappropriate. However, seeing as chat has been part of the app since an update in August, Boyfriend Maker has seemingly avoided Apple's detection for quite some time.
At the time of writing, Boyfriend Maker has not been pulled from sale or updated to remove its offensive content. Now that the app's making headlines, it'll be interesting to see how swiftly Apple can eject it from the walled garden.
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