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A plastic surgery app for kids is withdrawn following online criticism – what were iTunes thinking?

A plastic surgery app for kids is withdrawn following online criticism – what were iTunes thinking?

17th January, 2014


As a Twitter backlash forces iTunes to pull an ill-advised children’s plastic surgery app, I have to wonder if the world is going completely mad!

Of course, I am a proponent of plastic surgery. I have spent many years honing my craft and enjoy the challenges that each working day brings, as well as seeing how the results can change patients’ lives for the better. However, my patients tend to be over 30, with considerable life experience under their belt. They acknowledge the parts of their body that cause them issues and seek my help to make changes. These are consenting, well-informed adults.

You don’t have to be a parent to appreciate the obvious dangers and stupidity involved in offering children as young as 9 the opportunity to perform plastic surgery on a Barbie-like cartoon image - where, amongst other things, the user is encouraged to perform liposuction!

I have not personally seen this app in action and am forming my view via third party reviews of the format, but do we really want our children to even know liposuction exists? To believe that in order to be beautiful you need a perfect body or face? I believe kids should be sheltered from these views and not exposed at all, certainly not as a source of entertainment.

What’s especially shocking is that this game would surely have passed through many adult hands before it was fully sanctioned and offered for download. Just how many “experts” at Apple gave it the go-ahead, thinking that it was a great idea?

Thank goodness this senseless venture has been pulled from the market - if only thanks to a vigilant Twitter campaign. I shudder to think what the app makers will come up with next but hope that in future the decision-makers at iTunes will be more responsible about the messages they put out to our children.

The Guardian article