After Its Porn Problem, Twitter-Owned Vine Adds 17+ Age Rating To Video Sharing App

Next Story

Samsung Invests In Cloudant, A CIA-Backed, YC Alum That Specializes In Database-As-A-Service Technologies

Vine, the Twitter-owned video sharing iOS app which lets users knit together snippets of video to create six second loops, has had its user age rating increased to 17+. The increase was bundled in a v1.0.5 app update which requires users to confirm they are “at least 17 years old” before the download begins, and warns of “frequent/intense sexual content or nudity”, among other warnings of “infrequent” drugs, alcohol, tobacco, horror/fear themes, profanity/crude humor and realistic violence, to name a few.

The change was spotted earlier by the Verge which noted that Vine previously had a 12+ rating on the app (also related: late last month Vine started censoring searches to try to weed out pornographic terms). In addition to the age increase, the v1.0.5 update adds the ability to report or block a profile. A message in the update’s ‘What’s new’ section adds: “We’re listening: please reach out to us at feedback@vineapp.com with any issues or suggestions.”

Other additions in the v1.0.5 update include a share to Twitter or Facebook button, and various bug fixes including a black screen issue following attempted video uploads. Vine 17+ age rating

Vine only landed on the App Store late last month but the day after its release it took the number one free app spot in the App Store’s Social category. After surging popularity — fuelled by its slick, addictive twist on video-sharing which lets users hold a finger on the screen to record each sub-six second snippet to incorporate into the full Vine loop — came the inevitable porn problem, as a sub-set of users started making Vines starring their favourite body parts.

Vine’s smut problem was compounded by human error — after a Vine containing hardcore porn appeared as an Editor’s pick. Oops. This was quickly followed by Apple pulling the app from its Featured Section on the App Store — Cupertino being famously unwelcoming of adult content within its digital walls. By adding an age-rating to the app Vine will be hoping to avoid an out-and-out App Store ban — Apple’s App Store guidelines forbid “overtly sexual content” (Apple has previously pulled apps for containing porn — just last month it removed 500px app claiming it was too easy to search for nude photos). In its favour, Vine is owned by Twitter — and Twitter’s service has been deeply integrated into iOS, since the launch of iOS 5.

Twitter acquired Vine, a NYC startup, back in October. We’ve reached out to Twitter for comment regarding Vine’s minimum age increase and will update this story with any response. Update: Twitter declined to comment.