Ted Cruz and AOC call out Apple for censoring Hong Kong app

Another bipartisan group from Congress, including Ted Cruz and AOC, have sent a letter to Apple calling them out for dropping their Hong Kong app:

Here’s more from The Verge:

In two letters, a bipartisan group of lawmakers sharply criticized Apple and Blizzard over their recent actions in China.

The first, addressed to Apple CEO Tim Cook, expresses “strong concern” over the company’s decision to remove an app used by Hong Kong protesters from its App Store. The app, called HKMap, tracked police presence and was used by pro-democracy activists, but was removed earlier this month after Apple claimed it was being used for criminal activity. The app’s developers said there was no evidence of that, and Apple has been slammed for the move.

“Cases like these raise real concern about whether Apple and other large US corporate entities will bow to growing Chinese demands rather than lose access to a billion Chinese consumers,” the letter says.

The letter was signed by Sen. Ron Wyden (D-OR), Sen. Tom Cotton (R-AR), Sen. Marco Rubio (R-FL), Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX), Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-NY), Rep. Mike Gallagher (R-WI), and Rep. Tom Malinowski (D-NJ).

The second letter, signed by some of the same lawmakers, was sent to Activision Blizzard CEO Robert Kotick, and similarly criticizes the company’s decision to ban a competitive Hearthstone player who voiced support for the Hong Kong protesters. The letter says the “disappointing decision could have a chilling effect on gamers who seek to use their platform to promote human rights and basic freedoms.”

In their letter they don’t just criticize Apple for censoring this app, but also 2200 other apps, some of which would allow people to circumvent China’s firewall and others which were created for oppressed minorities like the Uyghur and Tibetan communities.

Read the full letter here…

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