Yesterday we featured the controversial Jesus Dressup iPhone application by artist Normal Bob Smith. The app depicts Jesus hanging from the cross in his underwear and allows users to place silly outfits on Jesus like a basketball uniform or tutu.
Back in 2003, retailer Urban Outfitters stopped selling refrigerator-magnet sets of the same dress up concept due to a huge national controversy.
And now, Jesus Dress Up finds itself removed from sale once again. In less than 24 hours after launch, Jesus Dressup was pulled from the App Store. Considering many Christians would find Jesus Dressup offensive and insulting, it should be no surprise the app is no longer for sale.
But what is surprising are the details surrounding the removal of Jesus Dressup … specifically Apple did NOT remove the application. There was no public outcry … no activists … and no organizational efforts that led Apple to ban Jesus Dressup. Rather a fairly boring spat between the app’s owner, Normal Bob Smith, and its developer.
Smith writes on his blog …
Let there be no confusion. Apple did not pull the Jesus Dressup app. Christians did not get it removed. I had a gargantuan disagreement with the person who made the application for me and last night, in a heated phone conversation that ended with us hanging up on each other, the app yanked by us.
We contacted Smith to get further clarification and insight into the situation … he said, “It was a disagreement over control of the account and pay. Work had begun before anything was in writing. That was a mistake. Subsequently an agreement could not be reached between us, to put it mildly”.
We then asked if he had plans to re-launch Jesus Dressup if he could find a feasible business partner … to which Smith replied, “I have no idea at all if there’ll be another go at it. I’m very soured on the experience.”
There were a few more questions we had for Smith, but the bastard told us we had enough info and called us “nosey” … LOL
So there you have it … the controversial Jesus Dressup app was removed due to a rather “normal” disagreement. Who knows if Apple would have banned the app themselves if Smith didn’t remove it in the first place. But for now, as the saying goes … move along – nothing to see here.