Feeds

back to article French novel falls foul of Apple's breast inspectors

French publishing house Les Editions des Equateurs is protesting vociferously that Apple has declined to to carry its novel La Femme online, due to an excessively jubular cover. Bénédicte Martin's book is set for release on 20 March, but won't be available via the fruity monolith due to an "inappropriate" image of a topless …

COMMENTS

This topic is closed for new posts.

Page:

Anonymous Coward

Why do people fuss about Muslims?

It's the US that follows a backward agenda of giving Protestant fundamentalists what they want, and tries to export it to the rest of the world. They are a lot more successful at it than the Taliban.

51
4
Silver badge

If the cover had guns, explosions, people being shot and mutilated and blown up there would be no problem, but dare show a sliver of tittie and the American moral police will come after you.

64
1

Re: Why do people fuss about Muslims?

Yeah, right. In the US they refuse to sell your book. In Afghanistan they behead you.

9
19
Silver badge

Re: Why do people fuss about Muslims?

Whilst I agree that the response is different (beheading/refuse to sell), the thought processes are the same and it's that we need to worry about. It's all about narrow minded bigotry and enforcing your views on others, rather than 'live and let live'. If someone wants to sell a book with t*ts on the cover, don't look and don't buy if that offends you. Have categories, so people can make an informed decision to look or not. As long as it's not hurting someone physically, leave well alone.

It always amazes me that the UK is seen is prudish (and it's true to a point), but compared to the USA....................

Given the recent protests in the UK about women breastfeeding in public, what the hell must happen in the USA?

37
1
Anonymous Coward

Re: Why do people fuss about Muslims?

No, you are missing my point. The US successfully exports its ideology (such as getting the anti-gay laws passed in Uganda). On the whole, the Taliban are pretty bad at exporting theirs beyond their tribal territories in Afghanistan and Pakistan. It was US ideology that brought in Section 28 in the UK, US ideology in the form of Scientology and the Mormons that promote a right wing agenda, US neo-cons that took in Blair and managed to get Fox to promote their ideas. A country that claims to be the land of the free is very good at exporting repression.

The US itself is a major supplier of hard pornography, but a US company that is trying hard to take over all bookselling in the UK is busily engaged in censorship. There is a complete double standard.

21
4
Bronze badge

Re: Why do people fuss about Muslims?

I think you will find that judicial execution in the USA is by lethal injection, or some similar 'keep the blood off the executioner's hands' method.

7
0
Silver badge

Re: Why do people fuss about Muslims?

@SundogUK

"Yeah, right. In the US they refuse to sell your book. In Afghanistan they behead you."

Of course, the interesting thing about all this, is that the Taliban (and their predecessors) are largely a product of the USA (specifically the CIA) from the days of the Soviet invasion of Afghanistan. The USA setup (or provided the funding) for many of the Madrasas in Pakistan that create the forebears of the Taliban and created a lot of the extremists Islamic views that now exist. At the time, they used it to radicalise people into fighting the Soviets etc. Somewhat backfired now.

There have always been a few extremists (of every faith) around. However, most of those around at the moment are the product of the USA in one way or another.

15
4
Bronze badge
Pint

Re: Why do people fuss about Muslims?

You could even go crazy and spell t*ts as tits... see how that works ;)

5
0
Silver badge

Re: Why do people fuss about Muslims?

>the thought processes are the same and it's that we need to worry about.

Rubbish. There's no moral judgement here. We are talking about one of companies at the forefront of the push to redefine marriage to include homosexual relationships. Jobs was no Protestant and I can't see anything particularly Christian about Apple.

What we are seeing is a commercial decision by a company to not annoy a large number of its customers. This is about keeping the image of the ibookstore (and thus iphone/tablet) a child-safe place. We don't put pictures of naked women in children's bookstores and if little Johnny asks mommy why the naked lady has no legs, little Johnny isn't going to see the ipad again. That isn't what Apple wants.

As for raging against those whose decisions don't conform to your own morality as "bigots", I'll leave the reading of the irony-scale as an exercise for the reader.

Live and let live indeed. Stop trying to make me run my business to suit your moral philosophy.

8
22

Re: Why do people fuss about Muslims?

" This is about keeping the image of the ibookstore (and thus iphone/tablet) a child-safe place."

What is child un-safe about a mother's breasts?

20
0
Silver badge

Re: Why do people fuss about Muslims?

"Rubbish. There's no moral judgement here. We are talking about one of companies at the forefront of the push to redefine marriage to include homosexual relationships. Jobs was no Protestant and I can't see anything particularly Christian about Apple."

I never said the company made a moral judgement. The company is responding to the morals of one of its largest markets (or at least the section with the biggest voice!!). I was talking about the morals of the people in the USA (not necessarily employed by Apple) that make breasts a thing to be hidden and have this prudish approach, that requires major companies to pander to them.

"This is about keeping the image of the ibookstore (and thus iphone/tablet) a child-safe place. We don't put pictures of naked women in children's bookstores and if little Johnny asks mommy why the naked lady has no legs, little Johnny isn't going to see the ipad again. That isn't what Apple wants."

Nope. This is about pandering to bigots. Strangely enough, children below puberty don't see nakedness as anything other than normal. They don't see any sexual context to it at all. Even those in their teenage years don't spend hours ogling book covers, they can get much better content elsewhere. This all speaks volumes about the bigots who see sex everywhere because they do and can't see that it actually speaks more about them and their morals and beliefs than about other people. Nakedness does not equal sex, except to them. If mommy had intelligence, when a child asks about why the lady is naked, she answers his question rather than getting all embarrassed and assuming her little darling is automatically thinking about sex, because that's what she thinks about. Simple, factual answer is all that's required. No need for embarrassment.

"As for raging against those whose decisions don't conform to your own morality as "bigots", I'll leave the reading of the irony-scale as an exercise for the reader."

I did no such thing. I merely said that they were trying to force their morals on me, whereas I wasn't trying to force my morals on them. I said let people do what they want provided they don't hurt anyone and if you don't like it, look away. I don't particularly like horror films, but I wouldn't stop them being published (or books). I simply don't watch or look away when they're on. Bigots try to force their morals on others, which is what they're doing (not Apple as explained earlier). I'm doing the exact reverse, do no irony there.

"Live and let live indeed. Stop trying to make me run my business to suit your moral philosophy."

I haven't expressed any moral philosophy other than 'live and let live'. I have merely pointed out that Apple are being driven to this by the morally outraged of the USA, rather than by how they want to run their business. If it weren't for the puritanical people out there, I'm sure they would happily publish this, as it all helps turnover and profit.

16
1
Silver badge
Joke

Re: Why do people fuss about Muslims?

"What is child un-safe about a mother's breasts?"

Indeed. I would have seen some without hours of being born!! Maybe there's a link between being bottle fed and a fear of breasts?

2
0

Re: Why do people fuss about Muslims?

What is immoral about a half naked woman? It's a human body ffs. The US/UK paranoia about nudity is starting to get tiring.

There is a difference between nudity and pornography that people don't seem to comprehend.

Would you ban little Johny from watching a National Geo documentary about tribe X, because their women refuse to cover up? Will little Johny never step foot in a museum because his parents fear being exposed to stone or painted boobies will surely damage him for life?

7
0
Anonymous Coward

Re: Why do people fuss about Muslims? - @Mr Anonymous

It's OK sucking so long as you don't look.

1
0
Bronze badge
Coat

@Mag07, Re: "It's a human body ffs".

Titter.

I'll go away and be a grownup now.

0
0
Silver badge

Re: Why do people fuss about Muslims?

Interesting that I get two downvotes for pointing out that the USA (and particularly CIA) were largely responsible for creating the Taliban through their actions during the Soviet occupation of Afghanistan. It seems that some people have no idea of history or the actions of countries/organisations in the past. Also interesting that they haven't written a response to say why they downvoted.

The sooner the USA realises they caused a lot of the Islamic fundamentalism and are continuing to encourage it through their actions (killing lots of Muslims, invading countries etc.), the sooner they will become mature enough to understand that breasts are not obscene of themselves. As an additional byproduct, the world might become more peaceful as well. Win all round.

3
1
Meh

Re: Why do people fuss about Muslims?

"What is child un-safe about a mother's breasts?"

Good point, except she isn't breastfeeding, you don't know she's a mother (unless you've read the book of course), and I think the pose she's in certainly suggests an element of sexual pravocativeness.

Other then that, good point.

0
5
Silver badge

Re: Why do people fuss about Muslims?

I wasn't suggesting that Apple was right to do what they did, merely pointing out that its a commercial decision - pretty much the same one Disney makes when it doesn't have topless women walking around with Mickey and Goofy.

While there certainly is a difference between nudity and porn, it is a relatively difficult one to police. There is a certain amount of subjectivity involved. It is far easier to say, "no nudity on display." It is a clear rule everyone understands and is easy (& therefore cheap) to enforce.

It isn't that a half naked woman is immoral. It is that a half naked woman on a cover (indeed on the internet) usually represents or is promoting immorality.

We don't live in a world of theory and idealism. What percentage of nudity on covers do you think is of the NatGeo type vs porn? It is a generalisation, a rule of thumb which holds true in the majority of cases (I suspect including this one) that nudity of covers is designed to trigger a sexual response. Apple know that a lot of their customers don't like that. That doesn't necessarily make the customers bigoted, it might just mean that they dislike advertisers (the cover advertises the book) trying to manipulate them into purchasing using sex. Some people like to keep sex as something special to share only with the person they love. Perhaps they think having advertisers trying to muscle in on their sex life is not something they want from their tablet, or that even just attempting to use sex to manipulate them into buying things is distasteful enough to warrant rejection of the device. Perhaps it is just a question of trust - if Apple don't demonstrate similar attitudes to decorum (ironically, all that is required is a veneer of restraint) as their clientele, they are less likely to be welcomed into their clientele's homes.

As far as childhood innocence goes, I agree that most very small children don't think of nudity as bad. On the other hand, just because children don't see anything wrong, doesn't mean its ok. I don't let my 11-year old walk the city streets naked. Nothing wrong with the human body? True, but that is deliberately misleading. Not everything is appropriate in every situation.

I found my aforementioned 11y.o. daughter (and her 9 year old sister) listening to Pitbull's "Timber" on youtube. She couldn't really make out the words (and hadn't really tried - she just liked the catchy tune). Damaged for life? Of course not. Utterly inappropriate? Most definitely. Even though she doesn't understand the meaning, I wanted it very clear that I disapprove and it isn't allowed. The reason it is banned is not that sex is bad, but because I don't want her to assimilate by repetitive listening, the rapper's attitude to sex. I want her to expect men to be respectful towards women and to be shocked and shun them if they aren't. That will be good for her. The catchy tune and thumping beat tends to switch off critical faculties and that is unacceptable, especially in a child with so much to learn.

Common-place nudity blurs the line between what is acceptable and what is not. In the NatGeo situation, what you aren't told is that often, while going topless is ok, something else (e.g. bare legs) is considered sexually provocative and is absolutely forbidden in those societies. That's not the particular culture I'm in though, so I don't worry about it.

There's nothing wrong with nudity per se, but neither is there anything wrong with defecating per se. Still, I don't want to see adults doing it on the pavement and neither do I want images of it pumped into my tablet where my kids are looking for Enid Blyton books.

I know in IT we strive for consistency, but I am still surprised that so many people fail to notice that life is extremely messy and edge-cases and exceptions abound. Attire for the beach is not right for a royal visit, but then again it might be if there is a volleyball involved and an Olympic committee-blessed judge.

There was a time when we mocked the Americans for their, "in order to liberate the village, we had to destroy it" attitude. Now it seems we have replaced liberal tolerance with militant permissiveness. The issue is not the content of our belief systems, but the viciousness with which we attempt to stamp out opposing viewpoints. We seem to be moving closer to Muslim regimes in trying to enforce everything we think is good and prohibit everything we think is bad. That might be logical with a religion (of the supernatural or political kind) where you are "saved" by how you behave, but not even Christians (should) think that, only with those concerned with controlling the behaviour of others.

0
3

Re: Why do people fuss about Muslims?

C'mon and think before you write will you. Two wrongs don't make a right. OK

0
0
Bronze badge
Pint

Considering that breasts are fundamentally Baby-Safe...

...it seems silly to get all worked up over them being exposed.

When I'm made King...

0
0
Paris Hilton

America's distorted view of Freedom®

So Americans have the constitutionally protected right to shoot each other and be racist bigots, but not the right to see boobs, apparently.

Weird.

35
2

Re: America's distorted view of Freedom®

In the recent 'Dawn of the Dead' remake, a scene showing a half naked female zombie shuffling towards our hero and you see her thru' the windshield. In the UK version you see her fully naked dead breasts but for the American release they had to digitally put blood spatter on the windscreen to hide them.

12
0
Bronze badge

Re: America's distorted view of Freedom®

Not so much weird as completely wrong.

" the constitutionally protected right to shoot each other and be racist bigots, but not the right to see boobs, apparently."

Pornography is constitutionally protected under the First Amendment. It's a form of speech and therefore must be allowed.

That doesn't, of course, mean that any particular retailer must be forced to sell or handle it.

2
1

What do they expect?

Americans are hyprocritical moronic prudes. The whole world knows that. Are they really surprised about this? There have been hundreds of similar examples.

21
0
Anonymous Coward

Re: What do they expect?

the problem is there is so bloody many of them. and more of them = more voice, bigger market = bigger impact on supply and demand. If we only had more land in blighty we could out breed them, become a bigger market and TAKE OVER THE WORLD.....

oh well.

maybe not

1
0
Anonymous Coward

Re: What do they expect?

Out breed the Yanks and take over the world? Easy-peasy - no worries at all.

However, Blighty <> China.

0
0
Bronze badge
Trollface

Re: What do they expect?

"Americans are hyprocritical moronic prudes. [snip] There have been hundreds of similar examples."

But it's not really our fault. Some country, not that I'm naming names, sent all of their overly-repressed megalomaniacs over during the initial settlement, And they sent them in a sound boat. Would it have killed you to have drilled some discreet holes in the Mayflower? Really?!

At least you did not send 'em with enough provisions, but they found a work-around for that.

3
0

Re: What do they expect?

Upvote because... fair point :D

1
0

And this is censored......

At the moment I am playing through the "South Park - Stick of Truth" game which is censored in Europe but not in the US (on the consoles but not on the PC apparently). I have come across three censored scenes, one regarding anal probing by aliens and two in the local abortion clinic. All the missing material is fully described with an apology to "Europe". Given the American sensitivities around abortion especially I an surprised that this censorship wasn't the other way round - i.e. allowed in Europe and blocked in the US. As I have just taken part in a battle which ends up with my opponent being crushed by a giant breast and myself being crushed by a giant pair of testicles with the battle taking place under the heaving sweaty bodies of a couple making love I find this type of censorship laughable by Apple. Is it a case of chronic bad language, graphic violence, gratuitous sex and outright all round offensiveness is fine so long as its a game but if a real women is displayed in quite an artistic way then its banning material?

7
0
Dig

Re: And this is censored......

But this was censored by the publisher not"Europe", or any ratings body. The only scenes removed for legal reasons is the depiction of swastikas for the German market where this is illegal.

9
0

Re: And this is censored......

In the case you mention, it was self censorship on the part of the publishers according to the writers of South Park who got involved in the game development. I agree with you that it is very odd but again Europe is still a very fragmented market where laws on abortion for instance differ greatly. I'm not sure that everyone in Ireland or Spain would get the jokes... But then again whoever buys a South Park game or video should really be aware of the content.

As far as banning a show of breasts on a book cover, it just seems really OTT. Anybody walking into a museum would be able to get exposure to women's bodies in various degrees of nakedness through sculptures, paintings and other pieces of art. Hardly the same material as your average Max Hardcore hard back cover magazine.

3
0
Bronze badge

I'll quote Bill Maher talking about the French:

[...] they're [the French are] okay with nude beaches: because they're not a nation of six-year-olds who scream and giggle if they see pee-pee parts.

I think it has to do with maturity ...

22
0
Silver badge
Coat

@Hans 1

Yes I find Bill Maher quite clever too, if not always. And no, I don't and I am not and not that either. Things I have problems with is when he calls European countries socialist. European socialists, there could be some, would burst out in tears or throw chairs or something if they where accused of living in a socialist country. And there we have the American problem where everything is either left or right. The space in between, where all the common sense lies has disappeared. Good affordable education for every child like good and affordable health care for everybody and social security is nothing but common sense. After all, having a piss, insuring your house, changing the engine oil in your car is common sense too. And if you look at "Michael Moore - Capitalism A Love Story (2009) FULL LENGTH" I have a feeling that Moore has a bit of a similar problem. The magnificent speech by Roosevelt (in the film) is about common sense too, nothing else. I quite appreciate Moore too and Oliver Stone Neil deGrasse Tyson and so many more with common sense. l was going to write "with some common sense left". But no, some American readers might not get it right.

But I would like Bill to meet a deaf person once as he doesn't seem to understand why a TV program might have a text and sound in the same language. New rule, Bill, double check more.

1
0
Silver badge

19th-century attitude

They still have not read "Pornography and Obscenity" by D.H. Lawrence, which he wrote as a response to the outrage he had caused with Lady Chatterley's Lover. Lawrence would never classify the "offending" (to Apple) image as pornography. In his words

"Pornography is the attempt to insult sex, to do dirt on it",

which this image, curiously juxtaposing the female body with a knife blade clearly does not do.

The USA apparently have some catching up to do on these issues.

4
1
Silver badge

We see [cover-]art, which happens to involve bared boobs.

Apple sees very rounded corners.

26
0
Facepalm

Boobs are "rounded corners"

But of course, mon ami. It all makes perfect sense now.

1
0
Bronze badge

Less rounded when they're cold though?

And wasn't there an El-Reg article recently about iPhone 6 being heat sensitive too?

Am I seeing a pattern?

0
0
Anonymous Coward

moral turpitude

Clearly, Apple have rejected this book because of the front cover image. In my opinion, it is a puerile decision - but one based on their terms and conditions which demonstrate a pitifully confused sense of morals. So it does beg the question why the publisher would even try and publish the book through Apple - did they not read the terms and conditions beforehand? - rejection was a certainty. Perhaps they are trying to whip up some PR. As we know, banning/censoring something is the best way to get it exposure, to which this article attests. Or maybe they were performing a public service to highlight their opposition to Apple's terms.

It is also telling that El Reg marks the article as NSFW. Does it imply that Apple's moral judgement maybe in part shared by El Reg, or as I suspect, are they acknowledging that there is a significant enough element of their readership who share the same moral judgement.

1
7
(Written by Reg staff) Silver badge

Re: moral turpitude

"It is also telling that El Reg marks the article as NSFW". Not really. If we didn't mark it so, someone would complain that they clicked on it at work and got into hot water because of the image. It's purely precautionary.

No moral judgement issue here.

5
0

Re: moral turpitude

Can we have a NSFW mark that works globally and a NSFW(US) localised version please :D

6
0

Re: moral turpitude

Couldn't you have marked it as NSFW in the *title*? I have quite a tall monitor and the NSFW in the text of the article was a wee bit late as the picture had displayed by then. Fortunately there's no one on the adjacent desk at the moment.

0
0
Silver badge

Oh, thanks, the Register!

Now the Right Hon. Theresa May, MP, will do us all for possession of extreme pornography. It has tits, it has a knife and it's been rejected by the Holly Apple = proof enough.

3
0
Silver badge

re. "... jubular cover"

It's lack of jubular cover that's the problem. I wonder when 'jubular' will make it into the Oxford English Dictionary?

3
0
Bronze badge
Coat

Re: re. "... jubular cover"

Of course, Jubular makes an excellent word. Would this lead to Jubular Bells? A prog-rock Mike Oldfield album with a suitable endowed cover?

Mines the one with the Jubular Bells CD cover insert in the pocket. Grrrr....

1
0
Pint

Re "Jubs" Possibly not that far off

http://www.oxforddictionaries.com/definition/english/lovely-jubbly.

Very pre fools and horses "Lovely Jubblies " supplanted the rhyming versions such as "nice Bristols" (= Bristol City` s) in London east slang, this would be be somewhere around 1970 when I was in Junior school (7- 10 ish, god knows what these grade things are)

For those on the other side of the pond: pre the current oblong cartons, things like milk were vended from machines from mid 60`s in a strange carton that was a tube squashed into a flat seal at both ends but at 90 degrees to each other,

A Jubbly drink was in a smaller version, and you would tear a corner off to get in.

Many sweetshops put them into the ice-cream fridge and froze them. I have no Idea what pre E-number chemicals were in them, but if you sucked on a frozen one the colour and flavour came out leaving an Ice matrix behind, we used to have races to suck all the syrup out (shudders!) I remember a red one and an orange one, and i think a purple, supposed to be cherry orange and blackcurrent? they left your tongue that colour and probably fluorescent under U/V light.

1
0

Nothing wrong with boobs

I mean, the first time I saw them was the day I was born!

5
0
Anonymous Coward

Re: Nothing wrong with boobs

That's just creepy

1
2
Silver badge
Childcatcher

Re: Nothing wrong with boobs

Yeah, that's the most riduculous thing about the whole business: Every child has already seen nipples.

3
0
Anonymous Coward

Re: Nothing wrong with boobs

"Re: Nothing wrong with boobs

That's just creepy"

Only if you sexualise the boobs. Breast feeding and tit wanks are two different things and don't cross in my mind.

Dodgy people!

3
0
Anonymous Coward

Re: Nothing wrong with boobs

"That's just creepy"

Absolutely right - breasts are totally creepy and unnatural and seeing them is guaranteed to corrupt the minds of babies and young children - at least according to the typical publisher.

Katie Morag and the Censor Struggle

"Hedderwick’s editor at the time was uncomfortable with images of Katie Morag’s mother, Mrs McColl, breastfeeding her new baby."

http://www.meli-mello.com/?p=2067

"Twenty years on, Katie Morag is enjoying enduring, iconic status and two of the titles are required reading in English primary schools. What is interesting, and shocking to some, is that Hedderwick still has to fight her corner in order to include natural images of a mother suckling her child."

You have to wonder what exactly is wrong with these people.

0
0

Page:

This topic is closed for new posts.