In case you didn’t hear about this news item, allow me to inform you of a very peculiar recent news story. Recently, Apple was forced, under threat of legal action, to remove an App called “Jew or Not Jew” from its French App store on the grounds that the app violated France’s law barring the aggregation or compilation of personal details without proper consent.
The action followed complaints from a French anti-racism group, which threatened to sue the iPhone maker…
Under French penal code, stocking personal details including race, sexuality, political leanings or religious affiliation is punishable by five-year prison sentences and fines of up to $411,870.
While I find the story be a bit sad, creepy, and comical, I really don’t see the legal issue. The app is not specifically germane to France, nor is the App or data in question of French origin. Additionally, one would have to prove the information to be factual under said statute. I suspect the app is basically just a reincarnation of the "Jew or Not Jew" website, which would question the compilation aspect of the allegation. While in theory a violation of the French statute stated above might be viewed as a very serious issue, it would seem that the intent of this website, and arguably this app, is not one of hate, but rather one of satire. Thus, I would surmise that this element is not necessarily satisfied. However, I don’t really know what I am talking about. :-P Also, one must further ask: does this mean the French do not know how to take a joke? Perhaps; but I will concede that it is nice that they are standing up for Jews, so no complaints here! On that note, I wonder if FrumSatire would make an app “Frummy or Not a Frummy? That might be entertaining.