China App Store removes another foreign app, Yahoo Financial. The news coverage app was pulled from the iOS App Store in the country for unknown reasons on October 14, 2021, according to the Apple Censorship website which monitors App Store changes and takedowns.
Earlier, Apple Censorship spotted that a religious app “Quran Majeed” was pulled from China App Store because of the government’s request. The developer of the app PDMS was told by Apple that the Quran Majeed app hosted illegal content “our app Quran Majeed has been removed from the China App Store because it includes content that is illegal.” The removed app had almost a million users in China and its ban put the spotlight on Apple once again for ignoring repressive policies of the Chinese government.
Yahoo Finance was pulled from the China App Store after publishing an article critical of China’s policies
As per the report, viewed by AppleInsider, Yahoo Finance has republished a story by Bloomberg which was critical of China’s repressive behavior against the tech industry a day before it was removed.
The article contained reference to supposed preferential treatment afforded to Apple in exchange for compliance with government requests, including app takedown notices.
For Chinese readers, the Yahoo Financial app was a source to get news stories of western media outlets which are usually blocked China’s Great Firewall and other internet censorship programs. And the article must have caught the Cyberspace Administration of China’s (CAC) attention and suffered the consequence.
As this is not the first and won’t be the last time China App Store removes an app for disobedience, Benjamin Ismail, project director at Apple Censorship criticized Apple for being submissive. Previously, he said that Apple should do the right thing.
“Recently Apple has been removing many apps at the demand of the Chinese authorities,” said Benjamin Ismail, project director at Apple Censorship, told the publication. But complying with governments’ orders is different than complying with law, especially in China, where the authorities often resort to extralegal means to muzzle the press, bloggers, activists or any dissenting voices.”