The InfoWars app, still allowed in the Apple App Store and the Google Play Store, is doing better than ever, despite efforts from large tech companies including Apple, YouTube, Facebook, and Spotify to stymie the effects of content from conspiracy theorist Alex Jones. By Wednesday, just two days after each company took their most decisive actions against InfoWars, the InfoWars Official app had shot from 47th to 3rd in the News app category of the Apple App Store.
The app, which provides access to InfoWars podcasts, articles and products, largely circumvents the content actions taken against InfoWars.
Apple booted numerous InfoWars podcasts off of its platform Monday while keeping the app, despite the two venues having similar hate policies. Under their objectionable content policy, the App Store says apps should not include:
Defamatory, discriminatory, or mean-spirited content, including references or commentary about religion, race, sexual orientation, gender, national/ethnic origin, or other targeted groups, particularly if the app is likely to humiliate, intimidate, or place a targeted individual or group in harm’s way.
According to CNN’s Dylan Byers, Apple CEO Time Cook and senior VP of software Eddy Cue personally made the decision to pull InfoWars podcasts while keeping the app, because they felt it wasn’t in violation of their policies.
While the inconsistency itself is disturbing enough for InfoWars opponents, even more shocking are the gleeful reviews of the app. In the last two days, the app has received 2,400 reviews and consistently held a 4.9-star rating.
The most recent reviews suggest that users are in fact downloading the app in protest, while also using it to fill-in for InfoWars channels that were removed elsewhere.
User Dr@1nDa5w@mp writes, “You can not silence us,” in one five-star review left Tuesday.
Ajs6969 was explicit about why he downloaded the app in their five-star review left Tuesday — it was one of the only places to stream InfoWars: “Great news App! Infowars can not be silenced! Other apps like TuneIn censored Alex Jones so listen and watch the show here.”
Ryuprime79 writes “I downloaded the app after Facebook, YouTube, Apple and Spotify banned infowars. The app works great and I’m happy to have it.”
These reviews represent the majority of reviews left in the last few days. Out of the last 100 reviews, 95 of them were five-star reviews. The other five reviews were one-star reviews — all protesting the existence of the app in the App store.
“Why is this still up?” asks Dani Springer, in one review.
User Chelseamikenyc complained in another that the “app is full of misleading hate, racist, and white nationalist conspiracy theories.”
While the reasoning behind the app’s continued presence in the app store isn’t entirely clear, it’s positioning as one of the last venues for InfoWars has ensured that the app will be mired in controversy for the foreseeable future.
Inverse has reached out to Apple multiple times concerning that app and has not gotten a response.