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Fri, Apr 24, 2009 - Page 10 News List

Apple drops game after public outcry


Apple Inc pulled a US$0.99 iPhone game called Baby Shaker from its iTunes store on Wednesday after its premise — quiet a crying baby with a vigorous shake — prompted outrage.

According to screen shots posted on several Web sites, Baby Shaker displayed black-and-white line drawings of a baby.

The iTunes description included the line: “See how long you can endure his or her adorable cries before you just have to find a way to quiet the baby down!”

Once the iPhone owner finishes shaking the device, the on-screen baby is depicted with large red X’s over its eyes.

Public outcry ensued, with organizations including the National Center on Shaken Baby Syndrome and the Sarah Jane Brain Foundation condemning Apple for approving the game’s sale.

The application was designed by Sikalosoft, which also makes a US$0.99 Dice Mosaic iPhone program that converts digital photos into black and white mosaics made from dice.

Sikalosoft did not respond to an e-mail seeking comment, but Baby Shaker was deleted from its Web site on Wednesday afternoon.

Apple spokeswoman Natalie Kerris said Baby Shaker went on sale on Monday, and confirmed that Apple had removed it on Wednesday. She would not comment on why the program was initially approved for sale, nor about how many people had downloaded the game.

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