Mobile video sharing app Viddy has been apparently been pulled from the Apple App Store not long after quickly rising up the ranks of free video and camera applications available for the iPhone. A Viddy spokesperson confirmed that the removal was due to concerns over adult material that was being posted on the app, and that the startup was working with Apple to resolve the matter.
Viddy is one of a large number of mobile video-sharing apps that have popped up over the last year or so. The goal is to enable users to take advantage of the high-quality video cameras in their pockets and to share moments with friends, hopefully to become a type of “Instagram for video.” Viddy is one of the most well-funded in the category, with a $6 million Series A round from Battery Ventures, Greycroft Ventures and Qualcomm that closed a few weeks ago. It’s also gotten some buy-in from major content providers like Disney, which it partnered with for the release of the new Muppets movie.
The Viddy app has recently seen its usage climb over the last few days and weeks — yesterday it was one of the top five apps in the App Store’s photo and video category. And while the startup has touted celebrity users like Snoop Dogg, Linkin Park and Bill Cosby as key to its early success, I recently received a tip that Viddy users might actually be looking for some less savory material being posted by users. (For what it’s worth, I wasn’t the only one tipped off — it looks like Business Insider’s Steve Kovach was also notified of some of the same activity.)
I took a look at the app and some of its top users. And while I failed to see anything that I would call full-on porn, there’s certainly a lot of suggestive material floating around. Take a look at the most-popular users, and they’re all female, all attractive. A lot of what I saw was just eye candy; you know, a hot girl talking to the camera, etc. But then there’s also a ton of booty shaking. Viddy basically taught me what “twerking” is.
The Viddy spokesperson tells me that the app has some tools in place to filter adult material, and users have the ability to flag videos that might be questionable. However, those filters don’t appear to have been enough to please Apple, with whom Viddy is “working diligently” to resolve the issue.