Apple Pulls Twitter Alternative Damus, Crypto Users Outraged

The removal of Damus, Jack Dorsey-backed decentralized Twitter alternative, from the Apple App Store has stirred controversy.

Tim Cook standing next to a pile of trash, with a Damus logo in one of the bins.
Created by Gabor Kovacs from DailyCoin
  • Apple removes Damus, a decentralized social media app, from its App Store.
  • The move caused an uproar in the crypto community.
  • Apple’s decision raises questions about the power of Big Tech. 

Critics say that Big Tech companies have excessive power over the web. Recently, Apple made a move that confirmed this idea for some people in the crypto space. The tech giant removed a decentralized social media app Damus from its App Store. 

This decision has sparked a heated debate about the importance of decentralized applications and the future of digital freedom.

Apple’s Decision and the Damus’ Response

On Monday, June 26, Apple decided to pull Damus from its App Store. Damus, backed by Twitter co-founder Jack Dorsey, is a decentralized social networking app, a Twitter alternative. 

The issue, according to Apple’s support, was Damus’ Bitcoin tipping service. This feature is designed to incentivize content creation and engagement within the app. 

On Twitter, Damus announced the removal, saying they tried to make changes to appeal to Apple. The tipping did not constitute a sale of digital content or services, typically where Apple’s 30% commission applies. 

“Users are only ever tipped after posts are made; the idea that content is being sold is nonsense,” Damus protested. “We will be filing an appeal as this guideline is clearly being abused and misapplied."

Outrage Over Apple on Twitter and Reddit

Apple’s App Store policies have long been controversial among app developers. One of the most contentious points is the so-called “Apple tax,” a 30% commission Apple charges on all in-app purchases. 

The removal of Damus highlighted these rules again, prompting crypto supporters to take to social media. “How is this even legal? 30% tax is criminal,” one user gasped. 

“I’m definitely not going to get another iPhone, though I probably won’t get the Solana phone either,” another user claimed. 

Other users pointed to regulation as a solution to the problem. For instance, the European Union rules that would force Apple to allow users to download apps from outside the App Store. 

Still, others pointed to Web3 as the potential solution. “This is exactly why we need a decentralized internet,” one user exclaimed. 

On the Flipside

  • Apple faced numerous antitrust lawsuits over its App Store policies in the past. However, the company has steadfastly defended this lucrative revenue source. 
  • In 2020, Apple tried to defend its 30% App Store fee by comparing it to other marketplaces like Uber and Ticketmaster. 

Why This Matters

This incident serves as a reminder of the ongoing tension between traditional tech giants and the emerging world of decentralized technology.

Read how Apple’s VR headset will give the company even more control: 

Apple’s Vision Pro AR Headset Highlights the Need for Decentralized Tech

Read more about the latest institutional push into crypto: 

ProShares Bitcoin ETF Tops $1B Amid Flurry of Filings

This article is for information purposes only and should not be considered trading or investment advice. Nothing herein shall be construed as financial, legal, or tax advice. Trading forex, cryptocurrencies, and CFDs pose a considerable risk of loss.

David Marsanic

David Marsanic is a journalist for DailyCoin who covers the intersection of crypto, traditional finance, and government. He focuses on institutionalized crypto entities like major cryptocurrency exchanges and Solana, breaking down complex topics into easy-to-understand writing. David's prior experience as a business journalist at various crypto and traditional news sites has enabled him to maintain a critical approach to news while adhering to high journalistic integrity standards.