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J*******k: Dirty word disappears from Apple iTunes store

Apple historically has fought iPhone jailbreaking by warning customers that their device warranties will be voided if they muck around with the innards of their Apple products. Now Apple appears to be taking its disapproval of jailbreaking one step further by censoring at least some references to "jailbreak" in its U.S. iTunes store.

The Shoutpedia website first picked up on the Apple action, citing a Tweet from iOS hacker "planetbeing." Shoutpedia writes that it's unclear whether the censoring of "jailbreak" is intentional, though the Cult of Mac blog says that Apple has actually been censoring the term for a months though has only recently begun uncensoring it. 

Songs such as Thin Lizzy's "Jailbreak" are now listed in some places as "J*******k", although we found unfiltered references as well. Even an episode of The Roy Rogers Show is listed as "J********k". A game called Jailbreaker from Triniti Interactive popped up uncensored, though.

Still, the filtering of some "jailbreak" titles puts the word into the same category as "b******t" and other swear words in Apple's eyes.

The U.S. government in 2010 ruled that jailbreaking iPhones and other such devices was legal as long as it wasn't being done to get around copy protections, but Apple has continued to oppose it, arguing that jailbreaking makes its products unstable and can introduce security problems.

The jailbreaking of Apple devices and software is a never-ending cat-and-mouse game, with hackers opening up devices such as the new iPad almost as soon as they are rolled out. 

Bob Brown tracks network research in his Alpha Doggs blog and Facebook page, as well on Twitter and Google +. 

Read more about anti-malware in Network World's Anti-malware section.


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