Monday, March 1

Apple removes app for conducting secret parties, flouting Covid-19 guidelines

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In the year of pandemic when everybody is being recommended to stay at homes and away from large gatherings to prevent the spread of coronavirus, some seem to be planning ‘secret gatherings’ and parties for the New Year, flouting the coronavirus safety guidelines.

This was done recently on the Vybe Together, an app on iOS, which Apple has now taken down. As reported by Apple Insider, soon after a video from the app appeared on Tiktok, encouraging users to join ‘secret gatherings’ in New York City for this weekend, the video sharing platform was removed from the iOS App Store.

When the video first came out, the short video gathering platform disabled a company’s account, which was highlighted as advertising “NYE ragers” by New York Times, in a tweet on Tuesday. It was only after then that Apple removed the app completely. The creator of the app confirmed this move to The Verge in a statement.

It’s worth mentioning that Vybe together urged users to join in ‘private’ revelry with the catchphrase “Get your Rebel on, get your party on.”

It is said to be exclusive and only for approved members to find, create and join parties.

“We are like Eventbrite, but way cooler,” a Vybe Together spokesperson told Business Insider. “Vybe’s can be anything from playing board games to bachata with your neighbours. A lot of people have been isolated and lonely and we wanted to enable them to meet. We are aware that large gatherings are not okay and we do not promote them. If we see events are popular we take them off!”

According to the app’s co-founder, the service boasted a few 1000 members only, while the other few thousands were in the waiting list. Also, Vybe Together’s last Instagram post read “Blown out of proportion by the media. We DO NOT CONDONE LARGE GATHERINGS!!!” The company has now closed the Instagram account as well.