Did Google Crush a Porn Revolution?

When Google (NASDAQ:GOOG) launched one of its latest devices, Google Glass, the sky was the limit. The device opened a new category for developers to explore and make any app they want. But, the sky’s not the limit anymore.

Google Glass is one of the first wearable devices of its kind. As such, it made sense for Google to get the development community on board to come up with endless creative possibilities for how the device could be used. Since the technology was novel, there was no precedent for how applications had to be or should be. So, with the doors wide open, naturally, someone made a porn app.

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The app in question — developed by MiKandi — is called “Tits and Glass” and allowed users to view adult photos and videos on their Google Glass devices. The content could be recorded on Google Glass and then view on the device as well, creating a particularly personal experience. MiKandi’s co-founder, Jennifer McEwen, said that users “can forget about the technology on [their heads] and be in the moment. The result is an authentic look at the wearer’s experiences.”

The potential for the app and device to change the porn business was right there, but then Google quickly took it away — emphasis on quickly.

Only a short while after MiKandi launched its Tits and Glass application, Google quietly changes its Glass Platform Developer Policies to bar content containing “nudity, graphic sex acts, or sexually explicit material.” Google also holds a “zero-tolerance policy against child pornography,” but that was not likely the problem for MiKandi.

This move is very similar to Apple’s in blocking adult content in the device’s app store. It’s not exactly clear why Google decided on this policy, but it may have something to do with the relative newness of the Google Glass platform.

Because Google Glass is still in an early run and just getting its feet of the ground, any major projects associated with the technology could fundamentally influence the way the device is received in the public eye. If applications turn it into a high-tech tool for navigating day-to-day life in a much easier fashion, then the public’s image of the device will likely follow that impression. On the other hand, if the device is seen as a new and unique channel for sexual content, then Google Glass could be stuck with the impression of being a smut device.

Google’s policy change should help to ensure that the device is recognized as an innovation in technology and not in pornography viewing and creation.

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However, MiKandi doesn’t want to just give up on Google Glass. The company has said that it will follow Google’s guidelines and remove sexually explicit content, even though it claims Google has yet to notify it of any changes to the policies. But, MiKandi still has ambitions.

The company will keep the application running without the explicit content. McEwen has said, “We’re excited about the possibilities Glass holds for more interactive applications as the technology matures.” She has also suggested the company is looking into ways that Glass can “facilitate two-way adult interaction” such as “between long distance couples.”

Even though Google’s policy change made it so that the sky was no longer the limit, there are still heaps of possibilities for app developers on Google Glass.

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