Immigrant-Smuggling Game Rejected by Apple

Russell Contreras, WTOP-FM (Washington, D.C.), April 28, 2011

An iPhone game that allows users to drive a truck full of immigrants through the desert while trying to prevent them from getting thrown out of the vehicle has been rejected by Apple Inc., the software’s developer announced Thursday.

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“Smuggle Truck” lets players navigate through what appears to be the U.S.-Mexican border. As the truck drives over cliffs, mountains and dead animals, immigrants fall off the truck’s bed. Scores are calculated by the number of immigrants helped across the border.

The company drew fire from immigrant advocates after it announced the game’s creation in February. Advocates said the game was in poor taste and trivialized how immigrants risked their lives under what the advocates call a broken immigration system.

But Schwartz said developers actually wanted to bring attention to immigration reform and tried to make sure the game’s characters weren’t stereotypical.

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“Smuggle Truck” can still be downloaded on PCs and Macs for $5. It includes for a limited-time a “legal immigration mode.” According to company, this mode “gives players the opportunity to sit in a waiting room and stare at a clock that counts down over the next 20 years” and is meant to highlight the “efficiency of the modern immigration process.”


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  • Tim in Indiana

    The company drew fire from immigrant advocates after it announced the game’s creation in February. Advocates said the game was in poor taste and trivialized how immigrants risked their lives under what the advocates call a broken immigration system.

    Who cares what “immigrant advocates” have to say about it? Their claims of the game being in “poor taste” are irrelevant. Parody has long been a recognized form of free speech in this country. (Notice no quotes from immigration control advocates in this article, by the way.)

    Anyway, the developers of the game were smarmy in trying to be politically correct and deserved to have their game banned. They tried to please everyone and ended up pleasing no one.

    If they had developed the game as a parody of our broken immigration system which lets far too many illegals in, and marketed it through alternative channels other than the iTunes store, then it might have been a hit. Now it deserves only contempt for trying to play both sides of the political argument.

  • Anonymous

    How about they show the Coyotes and Drug Smugglers who routinely take these people out on the desert and either abandon them or rape/murder them?

    How about they show a National Debt clock-

    http://goo.gl/R6lUx

    With the cumulative effects of social entitlement/transfer payment spending on legal/illegal immigrants?

    Or, if that’s too cerebral, how about this-

    http://goo.gl/f4R7x

    Which is more literal as an expression of the obvious ‘just you wait until there are enough of us…’ intent.

    There is no ‘unfairness’ in the Immigration/Naturalization period. Because the only bad thing that is being put off is a massive race war when the USD crashes and only one segment of the population is still able to generate taxes.