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This time, they forced a dictionary app to remove offensive words.

The first version, submitted May 13, was rejected because it crashed when run on the iPhone 3.0 OS beta. Crosby said it was fixed and resubmitted before being rejected again weeks later because it contained vulgar language, that could "be found objectionable by iPhone or iPod Touch users."

It's been established that Apple is squeamish when it comes to so-called "objectionable" content. Earlier this year an e-book app was rejected because it carried a link to "The Kama Sutra," and CNET's own David Carnoy wrote a book called "Knife Music," whose electronic version was initially rejected from the App Store for containing a scene with graphic language.

But the Ninjawords app isn't like an e-book where you have to read the whole thing to get your money's worth. This is a dictionary, a reference guide, where one has to actually look up the word in question to see it and be possibly offended by it.

Matchstick apparently played ball and tried to remove as many offensive words as it could, according to Crosby. When it submitted the application again--this time a whole new app, thus losing its place in the approval line--it was again rebuffed because more words deemed inappropriate by App Store screeners were discovered by looking them up.

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Petter Häggholm

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