Apple and Google have both asked Amazon to step up its content review of its Kindle app after discovering that children can use the app to access pornographic images, according to Reuters.
The content was initially discovered by some parents who contacted Reuters. These parents had purchased the Kindle Unlimited service for their teenage children because it contained some age-appropriate books that could not be found on Amazon’s other service, Amazon Kids +. However, the Kindle Unlimited service also offers some adult books with full-colour nude photos that can be downloaded for free and without parental censorship, as the Kindle Unlimited service provides all the content for just a $10 monthly subscription fee. The books are published through the Kindle service’s Direct Publishing feature, which allows authors to publish their books immediately and make them available on the Kindle Unlimited service.
Apple did not disclose specific details of its communication with Amazon, but the company told Reuters, “We have shared these concerns with developers and worked with them to ensure their apps meet our guidelines.” Apple has also changed the age rating for Kindle apps from 4 years or older to 12 years or older. Apple’s App Store guidelines do not allow apps to display “overly sexualised or pornographic content” and app developers are “responsible for vetting user-generated content on their platforms”.
Google also said it had contacted Amazon and said that Google Play does not allow apps that contain or promote sexual content. Amazon, for its part, said it was “reviewing all available information and taking action based on its findings”. Amazon says it is committed to providing a safe shopping and reading experience for its customers and their families.
Currently, the Kindle Unlimited service does not offer parental controls and Amazon has not made any changes to the Kindle app or the Kindle Unlimited service.