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Apple dangles tablet lure in Oz

Media censorship?

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Today's Apple-tablet rumeur du jour is that Cupertino is shopping its not-so-secret "print redefiner" to Australian media companies, trolling for content partners.

According to a Tuesday report from The Sydney Morning Herald, Apple has sent specs of the device to Oz-based content creators, in the hopes of enticing them to provide content for it.

This latest revelation comes on the heels of yesterday's slip of the New York Times exec editor's lip, when he said that his paper was "actively involved in the challenge of delivering our best journalism in the form of Times Reader, iPhone apps, WAP, or the impending Apple slate, or whatever comes after that."

The Herald claims that "It is understood" that Apple has been talking with media companies down under in preparation for the device's launch, offering them the opportunity to pick up a chunk of change by charging for their content when it's distributed for the device.

Exactly how big a chunk of change is anyone's guess, but as the Herald notes, Apple current scheme gives developers 70 per cent of content revenue, keeping 30 per cent for itself.

If this latest rumor is, indeed, accurate, it remains to be seen how active Australian censors will be in vetting content destined for the "impending Apple slate." After all, those worthies have recently expressed "concern" over content in apps and games destined for mobile phones such as the iPhone.

If the Australian Classification Board can insert itself between media creators and the iTunes App Store, its lengthy and expensive approval process might throw a spanner into the content-delivery works. ®

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