Apple to reject apps that include DUI checkpoints

“In conjunction with this week’s Worldwide Developers Conference, Apple has updated its App Store Review Guidelines, and part of the new approval process includes a section that prohibits the inclusion of DUI checkpoints in iOS apps,” Damon Lavrinc reports for Autoblog.

Section 22.8 states:
Apps which contain DUI checkpoints that are not published by law enforcement agencies, or encourage and enable drunk driving, will be rejected.

Lavrinc reports, “Neither Google or RIM have modified their app review guidelines yet, but if history holds true, where Apple goes, so goes the industry.”

Read more in the full article here.

[Attribution: Jalopnik via MacRumors. Thanks to MacDailyNews Reader “Lynn Weiler” for the heads up.]

Related articles:
U.S. Senate Democrats ask Apple to pull police-evasion apps – March 23, 2011
D.C. police chief denounces ‘cowardly’ iPhone users for monitoring speed traps – July 13, 2009


    1. Once more Apple does the right thing. People who drink and drive deserve to be treated harshly. They should not be helped to avoid discovert. If you don’t drink and drive you have nothing to worry about.

      1. If you want to avoid being in a long line of cars as each one has flashlights shined into it and obnoxious cops asking you questions that are none of their business, you’d want to avoid these even if you haven’t had a drink.

      2. NO, they are doing the wrong thing. It’s this little thing the cops love to ignore: The 4th Amendment.

        I have been caught in one of these and let me tell you it sucked. Left my house at a little after 9pm to go to the store, ran into a checkpoint, was selected and asked to pull off into a parking lot, a cop asked for id, insurance, registration, they asked to search my car. I said NO you have no cause, I have places to be. He said “Oh Really” and proceed to walk away with my documents, 30 minutes later he brings them to me and tells me I can leave. Illegally detained for no good reason other than he had a badge. SO yeah, the app could be used by people who are not drunk and just want to avoid delays and being hassled.

      3. Applesmack, say you don’t drink but on some other minor pretense of which you may not be guilty you are rousted and threatened with temporary loss of your car, to be picked up at a later date after paying hefty recovery and court fees. As a result you lose sleep. This happens on a regular basis by Gestapo style checkpoints that cost more per DUI than regular street patrols. Please read “First they came…” to understand the error of your position.

  1. Bastards. Those Gestapo “checkpoints” are bullshit. They have to be made public but, of course, the notices are hidden better than a New York Times retraction.

    1. Never understood why they ‘have to be made public’?!? Seems like if you’re trying to catch someone for doing something they “shouldn’t” be doing you shouldn’t have to tell them ahead of time!?!

    2. Apple only prohibits listings which are not published by law enforcement. Seems like people could still write Apps that make these hard-to-find publishings easier to find.

    1. Yeah… if it was actually used for that purpose, maybe. Statistics and reality show that they are really just trolling to find things to bust people on. It’s like red light cameras that ‘are for the public safety’ when they are shown to actually increase accident rates in those intersections. It’s all about getting money, not crime (although, once in a while, they might actually stop some. Might.)

      1. A decent argument for banning checkpoints entirely, but that’s not what we’re talking about. We’re talking about apps that help people avoid them. If checkpoints are about “trolling to find things to bust people on,” that presumably means issuing lots of minor, revenue-enhancing tickets for stuff people aren’t even very aware of… broken lights / mirrors, expired registration, etc. But by definition, those aren’t the people who would use these apps. Rather, the apps would be downloaded and used overwhelmingly by “bad people” who are aware they are doing something illegal, and want to get away with it. I’m all for banning the checkpoints, but allowing them to harass mostly innocent people AND allowing the worst people to avoid them is the worst of both worlds.

        1. I disagree.

          I don’t drink and drive. I don’t do drugs. I don’t expect to have any legal problem with a checkpoint.

          Still, I don’t like the thought of the government stopping me and going through whatever they want without cause to check for anything that might be amiss.

          Given the choice of two routes, I’d much rather take the route that doesn’t have the police search without probably cause. But apparently our corporatocracy won’t allow free speech when it comes to activities of the police in public.

  2. Ignorance wields its ugly head once again.

    Good on Apple. I don’t want some drunk asshole circumventing the system, plowing into and killing a family of five, who then turns the tables on Apple in a suit claiming Apple enabled them to continue to drive drunk.

    What’s the matter with people?

  3. Don’t drink and drive and your all set. Getting high would actually be more preferred over drunk since you’d actually be more focused or over focused. I’m glad I got the app a while ago “trapster” notifies you where speed traps are. Cops shouldn’t be hiding to bust people, they should be clearly out in the open as a reminder to stay at the limit and if you are dumb enough to keep going then you deserve a ticket

  4. Bravo apple and and I bet you wouldn’t say gestpo if your family was killed by some drunk driver .. You alcoholics kill more innocent people than all the wars in the world .. Glad apple won’t help slaughter millions

  5. I don’t have a problem with this. Now if Apple were going to reject apps that indicated red-light cameras or speed traps, THAT would be different. The ostensible point of those cameras or traps are to get drivers to stop or slow down, which the apps also do. But indicating sobriety checkpoints can actually promote the behavior rather than deter it.

  6. At least those of us who value the Fourth Amendment can still utilize Web apps and sites to prevent the local gestapos from padding their budgets with stolen lucre via illegal tickets.

    1. You must live in a shitty place if that’s what occurs at checkpoints in your community, or is the place filled with people who drink and drive; which would also qualify it as a shithole.

  7. You people who call this fascism disgust me. The only purpose of these apps is to help drunk drivers circumvent the law, thereby increasing the chance that they will kill innocent people. Someone I cared about very much was killed by a drunk driver last fall, so I strongly support Apple’s decision. Bravo, Steve Jobs. And to those of you who think these apps are a good thing, go crawl back under the rock from whence you came.

    1. Not necessarily. I don’t want to go through a police checkpoint even if I am stone cold sober. That has nothing to do with anybody who got killed by a drunk. I still don’t want to go through a police checkpoint, because I am not a criminal. There is no reason I should stopped, questioned, searched, etc., because somebody else drinks.

      1. I can’t imagine anyone wanting to be ensnared in a DUI checkpoint, sober or otherwise, but it’s even harder to believe anyone would live their life double-checking their phone for checkpoints before starting their car.

    2. I guess we should ban police scanners too. NOT!

      This is public information and the police, that work for us (the citizens), should not be doing anything not in the full light of day (i.e. I have a right to know where and how they are spending my money). These agencies are required to be transparent to the public who employ them. Stoping random people, or stopping everyone on a particular street IS fascist, whether you like it or not. Even if the checkpoints are not fascist they are, at the very least, an invasion of the privacy of every law abiding citizen that has been stopped at one.

      And banning these apps (or making Apple do it for you) is definitely fascist. If they can’t pass a law to make them illegal, there must be a good reason. That congress won’t ban them should tell you everything you need to know (i.e. they can’t cause it would be unconstitutional) and it should not be Apple’s responsibility to do anything congress asks them to. Congress works by legislation not intimidation.

      “Fascist governments forbid and suppress opposition to the state”

      “First they came for the Jews,
      and I didn’t speak out because I wasn’t a Jew.

      Then they came for the trade unionists,
      and I didn’t speak out because I wasn’t a trade unionist.

      Then they came for the communists,
      and I didn’t speak out because I wasn’t a communist.

      Then they came for me
      and there was no one left to speak out for me.”

      and before you start in on me, know that I don’t drink and drive and I have called the police on others I’ve seen doing it. But you start with removing one freedom and then your on to the next.

      Drinking and driving is illegal.
      The checkpoints are illegal.

      Knowing what the police are up to is not illegal and in fact is a requirement of a free society.

      These apps are not illegal, and if congress doesn’t like that they should do their job and pass a law. I am never impressed with heavy handed intimidation on the part of elected representatives. Seems down right dirty and corrupt.

      Free speech is supposed to be just that… FREE!

      1. Being a citizen in the US sometimes requires inconvenience. Driving is a privilege not a right. If you think their is something unlawful about having a check point then litigate it. Every society has rules to maintain order and safety. You have no clue as to what fascism is. In the US we have an amazing array of rights and freedoms. But drunk driving is not anyone’s right. Given the number of people who drink and drive DUI checkpoints are a minor inconvenience. Go live in a totalian country for a while so you can comprehend the difference. Try living in China or Iran and be sure to critize those governments and tell them about your rights. Tell us how that works out ” fer ya”!

      2. – macumus –

        Given my malediction towards a civil and egalitarian society and my rejection of an individuals duty as a responsible citizen to maintain a civil and egalitarian society, like … being accountable!

        I instead advocate the notion of total freedom for individuals, thus fostering anarchy.

        Add to that my “fascist” neurosis, apropos “the practice or principles of social equality” a.k.a. ethical governance, which demonstrate my abhorrence of authority and my intellectually naivety, especially given that I adduced Niemöller to the equation, given that he is the last person to prescribe as a flag-bearer of respect … the “First they came for” … axiom when deconstructed reflects remorse through self-preservation, not guilt.

        I might not be trying to create a better society for myself and everyone else, in fact I might be an apostle for the “Look after Numero Uno, screw everyone else” theory.

        Personally I reckon that I might be a Troll, a Troll with a capital T, a commie bastard Troll, trying to bring America down from within!

  8. I do drink and get drunk, I am way to stupid to use an IPhone app. If I can not use my iPhone why would I drive home. Most rational person would call a taxi or get a ride. To plan ahead of time with app to drink and drive make than some real sick puppies. Apple is correct and has a right to ban these type of apps.

  9. In general, I do not like rules that limit choice. But I don’t have any problem with DUI checkpoints. An idiot drunk driver compressed my sister’s car into an accordion and killed her back in the mid-1980s.

    There are limits to everything that we do – even free speech. I don’t see a need for iOS devices to aid drunk drivers in escaping a checkpoint so that they can injure or kill someone in the future. Let them get an Android phone or a Windows 7 phone.

  10. Red light cameras cause accidents because the moron behind you, instead of preparing to stop as the light turns yellow, decides to beat the red light. You know who you are you piece of shit! Don’t be giving me the finger just because I drive conservatively.

  11. Most people against this app, aren’t pro drunk-driving, they r pro civil liberties. The fact is more than 80% of revenue from DUI check points comes from non-dui ticket revenue.

    When the government starts intimidating companies into filtering there wares, it will not stop at what you think is a good idea

Reader Feedback

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.