New app alters e-books to block “objectionable content”

By John Mack Freeman

The Clean Reader app for iOS and Android released recently. This program blocks profanity from e-books by taking out the offending word and replacing it with a “cleaner” alternative or by simply leaving a blank space. Although the word is viewable by tapping the space, the goal of the app is to rewrite text. From their website:

Clean Reader prevents swear words in books from being displayed on your screen. You decide how clean your books should appear and Clean Reader does the rest.

A cursory look through the app found that it didn’t automatically block GLBT-related terms at this time, though the app does have mixed results in achieving its target goal. In one title I tested, a character named “Dick” had their name changed to “groin.”