Apple has canceled apps for their political views or other ideological reasons. Apple terminated an employee who sued the company for political discrimination. The company has engaged in censorship activity in China and Taiwan and has been accused of colluding with the Chinese Communist Party. Apple discriminates against religious nonprofits in its charitable giving and does not protect its employees against viewpoint discrimination. The company leverages its corporate reputation and funds to support and solicit support for groups hostile to freedom of expression, like the Southern Poverty Law Center (SPLC). Tim Cook, the CEO, has referred to religious freedom legislation as "pro-discrimination." For these reasons, Apple receives a "High Risk" rating.
Has denied service to customers, suppliers, or vendors due to their political views or religious beliefs OR corporately boycotts, divests, or sanctions regions, people groups, or industries.
Apple removed Parler from its app store for “failing to effectively police content” (1). It did the same for Gab, even though Gab appealed the suspension, pointing out that many other approved social networks contained identical content that Apple did not scrutinize (2). Apple has also enabled censorship in other countries, including China and Taiwan (3)(4). Apple received a score of 100 on the Corporate Equality Index from the Human Rights Campaign (HRC). Among other requirements, this means the company has pledged to vet vendors based on LGBTQ policies (4). Apple has also banned Fortnite, Metadata+, Trapster, and many other apps (5). According to various reports, including from Apple itself, the company blocks millions of apps each year; some of these banned apps are available on other platforms, such as Google Play (6). Some of these banned apps have accused Apple of banning them for political or other reasons (7). After Elon Musk became CEO of Twitter, Apple allegedly threatened to pull Twitter from its App Store (8). Apple has not denied this claim.
Charitable giving (including employee matching programs) policies or practices discriminate against charitable organizations based on views or religious beliefs.
Employment policies fail to protect against discrimination based on political affiliation/views and/or religion.
Apple does not protect its employees against viewpoint discrimination (1). The company fought against a shareholder resolution to ensure protections for employees and clients against viewpoint discrimination (2). Apple fired an employee who objected to its censorship, spurring an ongoing lawsuit over political discrimination (3)(4).
Uses corporate reputation to support ideological causes and/or organizations hostile to freedom of expression.
Apple used iTunes to solicit donations for the Southern Poverty Law Center (SPLC) (1). CEO Tim Cook wrote a Washington Post op-ed referring to religious freedom legislation as “pro-discrimination” (2). Apple also advocates for the Equality Act and transgender participation in girls’ and women’s sports (3)(4). Apple voiced opposition to various state legislatures’ efforts to secure their voting systems as well as the 2015 NC “Bathroom Bill” that required people to use the restroom corresponding to their biological sex (5)(6). Apple opposed the Florida Parental Rights in Education Act, which prohibits teaching gender identity and sexual orientation in schools to kids in K-3rd grade (7).
Uses corporate funds to advance ideological causes, organizations, or policies hostile to freedom of expression.
Apple has given $1 million to the SPLC and is a Platinum Sponsor of the HRC (1)(2). Overall, Apple has pledged $100 million to the Black Lives Matter movement and related causes (3)(4). Apple’s medical benefits cover abortion-related travel costs for employees (5). Apple is a Titanium sponsor of Out and Equal (6).
All links were last accessed and all information was updated on:
March 28, 2023
Company reports are intended for educational use only. Full Disclaimer
Napa Legal analysis of Big Tech user agreements