Man sues Apple for letting him see porn

The company's been criticized for banning adult material -- now it's getting sued for allowing it

Published July 16, 2013 6:50PM (EDT)

                   (Reuters/Mike Segar/Photo treatment by Salon)
(Reuters/Mike Segar/Photo treatment by Salon)

I don’t mean to cause a panic, but SOMEONE IS TRYING TO TAKE YOUR PORN AWAY. Chris Sevier, who blames the demise of his marriage and his “addiction” to porn on Apple, filed a lawsuit last month in hopes of forcing the company to begin blocking adult material on all of its devices. If the company doesn’t adopt this “safe mode” policy, he plans to move ahead with litigation and seek damages.

Sevier claims to have never seen porn until the day his fingers slipped and he accidentally typed “” while trying to access the similarly named -- I mean, I guess -- social networking site. (For reals, this is actually in the court filing.) This led to a downward smut-spiral, he says, during which he “began desiring younger more beautiful girls featured in porn videos than his wife, who was no longer 21.” The suit goes on to bizarrely claim that “the Plaintiff could no longer tell the difference between Internet pornography and tangible intercourse due to the content he accessed through the Apple products.” What that means, I haven’t the slightest idea.

The suit argues, “There is no reason for Apple, a private company to overly support pornography online, explicit sexual content which has led to the proliferation of arousal addiction, sex trafficking, prostitution, and countless numbers of destroyed lives.” Sevier “respectfully demand(s) that Apple sell all of its devices on ‘safe mode,’ with software preset to filter out pornographic content.” The suit does allow that those over 18 should be allowed to access a password from Apple in order to unlock pornographic content -- but users would have to opt-in to porn. (Sound familiar? In the United Kingdom, Internet service providers have been pressured by lawmakers into making porn-filtering a default setting.)

What’s especially odd about this case -- and that is really saying something -- is that Apple is notoriously anti-porn. Steve Jobs famously promised "freedom from porn" and the company has made good on that pledge. Nudity is strictly banned from the iTunes App Store. In fact, Apple was previously threatened with a lawsuit by Danish newspaper Ekstra Bladet after the publication’s iPad app was banned for featuring photos of topless women. I suppose this shows that a high-profile company like Apple is going to be attacked from all angles. But it also makes me think of the article I published just last week on the rise of porn-blocking services for adults. This case is yet another reminder that many anti-porn campaigners aren’t just concerned about kids -- they’re worried about themselves.

By Tracy Clark-Flory

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Apple Apple Computer Lawsuit Love And Sex Porn Addiction Pornography Sex