First the bad news. Only a couple weeks after we told you about Reznor demoing and launching the NIN iPhone App, he’s angrily (reasonably so) posting on his webboard about Apple rejecting an update because of its inclusion of “objectionable content,” aka 1994′s “The Downward Spiral.” He calls out the company’s hypocrisy, comparing them to Wal-Mart (ouch)…

Via NIN Forum:

From: iPhone Developer Program
Date: April 27, 2009 11:44:12 AM PDT
Subject: nin: access 1.0.3: Application Submission Feedback

Please include the line below in follow-up emails for this request.


Dear Craig,

Thank you for submitting nin: access to the App Store. We’ve reviewed nin: access and determined that we cannot post this version of your iPhone application to the App Store at this time because it contains objectionable content which is in violation of Section 3.3.12 from the iPhone SDK Agreement which states:

“Applications must not contain any obscene, pornographic, offensive or defamatory content or materials of any kind (text, graphics, images, photographs, etc.), or other content or materials that in Apple’s reasonable judgement may be found objectionable by iPhone or iPod touch users.”

The objectionable content referenced in this email is “The Downward Spiral”. Since the app is live on the App store, please make the necessary changes to the application as soon as possible, and resubmit your binary to iTunes Connect. Thank you


iPhone Developer Program

Now, “The Downward Spiral” the album is not available anywhere in the iPhone app. The song “The Downward Spiral” I believe is in a podcast that can be streamed to the app.
Thanks Apple for the clear description of the problem – as in, what do you want us to change to get past your stupid fucking standards?
And while we’re at it, I’ll voice the same issue I had with Wal-Mart years ago, which is a matter of consistency and hypocrisy. Wal-Mart went on a rampage years ago insisting all music they carry be censored of all profanity and “clean” versions be made for them to carry. Bands (including Nirvana) tripped over themselves editing out words, changing album art, etc to meet Wal-Mart’s standards of decency – because Wal-Mart sells a lot of records. NIN refused, and you’ll notice a pretty empty NIN section at any Wal-Mart. My reasoning was this: I can understand if you want the moral posturing of not having any “indecent” material for sale – but you could literally turn around 180 degrees from where the NIN record would be and purchase the film “Scarface” completely uncensored, or buy a copy of Grand Theft Auto where you can be rewarded for beating up prostitutes. How does that make sense?
You can buy The Downward Fucking Spiral on iTunes, but you can’t allow an iPhone app that may have a song with a bad word somewhere in it. Geez, what if someone in the forum in our app says FUCK or CUNT? I suppose that also falls into indecent material. Hey Apple, I just got some SPAM about fucking hot asian teens THROUGH YOUR MAIL PROGRAM. I just saw two guys having explicit anal sex right there in Safari! On my iPhone!
Come on Apple, think your policies through and for fuck’s sake get your app approval scenario together.

Trent later clarified his stance on Apple in a separate post:

Everyone – let me be clear. I love Apple products and as goofy and out-of-touch as their app approval process / policy is, I will still use them because they work 1000X better than the competition. This is not a debate, it’s a fact. The iPhone is THE most elegant, modern smartphone at this point in time and it’s perfect for what we want to do with the NIN app – except for the ludicrous approval process, and that’s what I want to draw attention to.
Android is cool, but nobody has an Android phone. Blackberry is OK but the hardware is inconsistent and WinMo straight-up sucks balls. If Apple doesn’t get it together, we will most certainly make it available to the jailbreak community. I didn’t invest in this app to see it languish on the sidelines from an idiotic policy while this tour is in full swing

In happier news, Trent just got engaged to West Indian Girl singer/Playboy babe Mariqueen Maandig. That’s the couple above at the Star Trek premiere in Hollywood the other day. They’re registered at Slashdot. [Photo: Kevin Winter/Getty.]

Comments (27)
  1. I’m still not much of a NIN fan, but I absolutely agree with his point. Its the same hypocrisy that causes kids to be carded when they try to buy Gears of War 2, but not when they buy The Matrix.

  2. william  |   Posted on May 4th, 2009 0

    I agree with his point, but I disagree with the hair / facial hair combo. (on both of them).

  3. mogmog  |   Posted on May 4th, 2009 0

    Trent wants to hurt Apple
    to see if they still feel

  4. thefaintingcycle  |   Posted on May 4th, 2009 0

    “They’re registered at Slashdot.”
    Very nice.

  5. jim  |   Posted on May 4th, 2009 0

    To be honest, I think Trent is completely overreacting on this one. I work with Apple frequently with delivering content and Apple’s response to Trent here seemed very ordinary and formulated. My guess is that Apple has a “frontline” of people who screen content and this one was randomly chosen and flagged. In my experience all you have to do is write an email to someone above the frontline and they usually can get it approved same day. Maybe Trent already knows all this and was using this instance to air out his pent up feelings on Apple?

  6. @jim, I think you’ve missed the point. He isn’t complaining that his app was rejected, per say, but rather the hypocrisy of the process. Apple has no problem selling The Downward Spiral in their music store. Apple has no problem distributing question content via their own applications. A developer shouldn’t have to contact a non-”frontline” employee to get their application accepted.

  7. Craig  |   Posted on May 4th, 2009 0

    Trent’s “(including Nirvana)” comment makes him seem both really insecure and old.

    • Lonnie Pigford  |   Posted on May 4th, 2009 0

      Is there an echo in the room? Nah, it’s just Craig posting the same comment 5 times in a row.

  8. @Craig: He’s talking about how in the 90s, Walmart had a lot of influence on musicians and record labels. Now, it’s iTunes. Is he supposed to pretend that he wasnt making music in 1994 and that Nirvana wasnt the biggest band in 1994, so that he doesnt seem old? Or insecure?

  9. gachevsky  |   Posted on May 4th, 2009 0

    We get the point Craig!

  10. Nine Inch Nailed  |   Posted on May 4th, 2009 0

    Has Trent ever been married before? Either way, congrats to the big guy.

  11. his fiance looks like she could be an x-men villian

  12. It’s a cool app for fans, so I hope that they can get all of this b.s. straightened out.

  13. Cathelin  |   Posted on May 4th, 2009 0

    This lady looks awful. Trent deserves better.

    • GlitzGlamour  |   Posted on May 5th, 2009 0

      Yeah, he should totally be dating someone like Cameron Diaz or Mary Kate Olsen. That lady looks, like, I don’t know… not American.

  14. What, Trent is straight? WOW!

  15. John  |   Posted on May 5th, 2009 0

    Mariqueen Maandig is unbelievably gorgeous. Trent Reznor ought to be a happy man.

  16. That’s cause you’re probably white, but if you’re also a Filipino…ewww.

  17. oh  |   Posted on May 5th, 2009 0

    Ohh, so this is why NIN’s having a concert in Manila.

  18. i wanna f*ck you like a cannibal  |   Posted on May 5th, 2009 0

    so Playboy includes ladyboys in its content now? What a mad mad mad mad world…

  19. hungry hungry hypocrosy  |   Posted on May 5th, 2009 0

    interesting that the appauling “Baby Shaker” app got through the approval process…was only recently yanked off of iTunes due to protests.

  20. Kirsten  |   Posted on May 6th, 2009 0

    That is quite possibly the worst she has ever looked. I met her after the West Indian Girl show at Bumbershoot last year and she was gorgeous. Anyway, hope they’re a happy couple :)

  21. Dude, even though my phone’s pretty good, I’d get an iPhone to get that NIN app. And Trent deserves, O, so much better….

Leave a Reply

You must be logged in to post, reply to, or rate a comment.

%s1 / %s2