Snippet: Apple Alters Maps and Weather to Show Crimea as a Russian Territory ☍

Shared on December 5, 2019

Chris Welch for The Verge:

When used within Russia, Apple’s Maps and Weather apps now list Crimea as being a Russian territory. The move, reported by BBC News, is the latest example of Apple kowtowing to a government’s demands to keep its devices and services in good standing. The company faced significant criticism in October for removing the Taiwanese flag emoji from the iOS keyboard in Hong Kong.

This latest change stems from Russia’s roundly condemned annexation of Crimea in 2014. It only applies when Crimea is viewed or searched for with Apple Maps inside Russia; elsewhere in the world, Crimea isn’t labeled as Russian territory.

I know I’m a few days behind on this, but I wanted to weigh in—while I understand that Apple has to navigate some weird diplomatic waters with some foreign governments, moves like this feel gross. I’m guessing this is a bit of a rock-and-a-hard-place situation for Apple and they’re trying to comply in those regions as best they can, while still doing what is right outside of those regions.

What happens if everyone using iOS devices in Crimea goes into Maps, tapped on a place/business/etc., and used “Report an Issue” that the item in question is not in Russia?

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