03-21-2012 12:08 PM
Recently, Zinio released their app that would allow individuals to purchase and subscribe to magazines on the Blackberry Playbook. However, there are a number of magazines to which are not viewable on the Blackbery Playbook as, according to Zinio, RIM engages in censorship and has polices in place that block the sale of PG-13/Mature magazines.
Given that it's next to impossible of contacting RIM directly, I am choosing to post this letter on these forums in the hopes that RIM will read it. I want to voice my displeasure and, quite frankly, disgust that RIM is actively engaging in censorship of what consumers can put onto their Playbook to read. And I want to emphasize that this is NOT about the viewing of pornography; this is about the viewing of PG-13/Mature magazines.
For example, there is a magazine called GT (**bleep** Times) which provides reviews of **bleep** and lesbian individuals who have made advancements in the fields of anthropology, psychology, sociology, arts, entertainment, theatre, among others. This magazine is one of the magazines that RIM, through it's PG-13 policy, bans from being viewed on the Playbook. As a result, this month, I am unable to read an article about suicide rates amongst **bleep** teenagers in European nations - this is hardly pornography.
Our ability to read without censorship is a founding principle of a free and just society. In this day and age, there is no excuse for these policies to exist; therefore, I request that RIM review its policies on censorship and eliminate them so that consumers can make a choice - their own choice - as to what material they would like to view on their Playbook.
For reference, I have included some quotes from Zinio that I received yesterday regarding the issue of censorship:
"RIM restricts PG-13 content for mobile devices. Until they eliminate these restrictions, Zinio cannot provide PG-13 content for the Playbook. I'm sorry for any inconvenience."
"GT(**bleep** Times) is not an adult magazine and I agree with you that it should be available on your device. Unfortunately the mag has a rating of PG-13 and falls into this category that Blackberry won't allow on their device."
"In addition, please feel free to share your feedback with Blackberry about these censorship policies they have put into place for developers like us."
Let's hope this matter can be rectified as soon as possible.
03-22-2012 02:20 PM - edited 03-22-2012 02:20 PM
I don't believe RIM intended it this way, it's probably collateral damage. Or ignorance. Or both.
Strange that g-a-y is censored even in these forums and even by a Canadian company, who should be a little more "educated" about these things. Last time I checked it was a perfectly legit word. Like "Educated" or "Canadian".
03-22-2012 02:31 PM
Upon closer inspection: it's a technical issue.
App World has a rating per app. Zinio are perfectly able to display PG13 content, but they would have to raise the rating of the Zinio app in App World to PG13 too. The same goes for any rating, any reason, any topic, whether qay, Iesbian or straight.
Now whether GT should be PG13 is another issue, and not RIM's or Zinio's fault. Here in Europe we're pretty liberal about these things. I'm always surprised how different it is on your side of the pond.
03-25-2012 09:21 AM
From the Zinio FAQ:
"We would like to correct a tweet from earlier this week which was posted in error. Out of respect for the diverse PlayBook customer base, Adult content is not available on this platform (Playboy, for instance). However, we have received reports that some “PG-13” content (such as MAXIM) was not intitially available. That has been corrected and those titles should now be viewable in your library."