- Apple has issued a notice of removal for Damus, a decentralized social network that operates on the Nostr protocol and uses Bitcoin for transactions, stating that it violates the company’s App Store Review Guidelines.
- The ban occurs at a critical time as Damus is about to present at the Oslo Freedom Forum, detailing how decentralized networks can usher in financial freedom.
For followers of Bitcoin, Nostr has become a revolutionary protocol that holds the potential to reshape the social media world into a censorship-resistant landscape. However, technology behemoth Apple appears less supportive of this progressive shift.
Damus, a popular decentralized social network based on the Nostr protocol, was launched on the Apple App Store on January 31. But its debut has been cut short. Apple has issued a ban notice to the platform, stating that the application will be delisted from the App Store within 14 days, as announced on Damus’ official Twitter account.
The reason for the ban, as conveyed by Apple to the Damus developers, concerns the platform’s ‘zaps’ – a feature enabling content creators to sell digital content. Apple’s statement read:
“Upon re-evaluation, we found that your app is not in compliance with the App Store Review Guidelines. Specifically, we found that your app is in violation of the following: Guideline 3.1.1 – Business – Payments – In-App Purchases.”
According to Damus’ team, the ban comes at a “suspicious” juncture. The developers are scheduled to speak at the Oslo Freedom Forum from June 13-15, explaining how the integration of decentralized social networks with the Lightning Network can advance financial freedom.
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The Bitcoin community has responded with frustration to Apple’s decision. One member pointed out that Apple insists on maintaining control over digital goods transactions via its in-app purchase platform. Others highlighted that Damus does not sell digital goods but merely incorporates a tipping feature to facilitate peer-to-peer transactions, likening it to a decentralized version of Venmo or Cash App.
Ray Youssef, former CEO and co-founder of the P2P platform Paxful, added his voice to the debate, asserting that centralized players like Apple see peer-to-peer networks as a threat. He noted their awareness of how swiftly content producers and their followers could move to Bitcoin apps.
The price of Bitcoin stands at $26,158 as of this report, awaiting today’s CPI release in the US. The announcement could significantly influence tomorrow’s interest rate decision by the US Federal Reserve (Fed). There is a prediction that the Fed might avoid an increase in the key interest rate for the first time since March 2022.
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