Apple removes anti-vaxx dating app from app store

·2-min read
Apple removed an app for people unwilling to get vaccinated against Covid-19 (Getty Images)
Apple removed an app for people unwilling to get vaccinated against Covid-19 (Getty Images)

The creators of a networking app intended for people unwilling to get vaccinated against Covid-19 have accused Apple of censorship for taking it off its app store.

Shelby Thomson, 27, the founder took to Instagram to voice her opposition to Unjected being removed from the App Store.

“Apparently, we are considered ‘too much’ for sharing our medical autonomy and freedom of choice,” she said in a video.

The app was taken down following a Bloomberg news story about Apple hosting the application. In response, Unjected shared a screenshot of the article with the caption, “when one report gets you deleted off every platform instantly. We must be doing something right.”

According to an email from Apple to to Unjected, the app was removed due to how it “inappropriately refers to the Covid-19 pandemic in its concept or theme.”

Apple mandates that all apps providing information about the coronavirus must be from official bodies, such as public health institutions, universities or governments.

According to the app’s description on the Google Play Store, where it is still available for download, it says it seeks to “connect business, fulfilling friendships and love with COVID-19 unvaccinated”.

An Apple representative told Business Insider that the app violated their rules about covid policies.

“The developer has made statements externally to its users as well as updates to the app that once again bring it out of compliance,” they said.

Apple also said Unjected had been initially rejected from the store but to keep it there, the app urged users to stop using words such as “jabbed” and “microchip.”

“This is a violation of our guidelines, which make it clear: ‘If you attempt to cheat the system…your apps will be removed from the store,” the representative’s statement said.

In an interview from June, Ms Thomson and Ms Pyle outlined their reasons for creating the app, citing the trend of dating apps such as Hinge and Bumble allowing users to state on their profiles if they reached fully vaccinated status or not. It originated as a dating app, however developed in scope.

"We don't appreciate the segregation and we don't approve of it, so we decided to create our own community where we feel welcome," Ms Thomson said, according to SWNS.

Ms Thomson repeated this to the The Independent, saying in a statement, “We believe that the the banning was an unjust attempt at censorship. are a respectful movement of people who support their medical autonomy and freedom of choice. The policy’s go against our first amendment rights.”

The Independent reached out to Google for comment.

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