The words iPhone won't auto correct

Last updated 05:00 18/07/2013

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"Abortion", "virginity", "rape", "bullet" and "ammo" - slightly misspell any one of these words on an iPhone, iPad or iPod Touch running the latest iOS operating system and Apple will refuse to suggest the correct word.

That's according to analysis conducted by The Daily Beast, an American news and opinion site which tested - using automated software - two different misspellings for roughly 250,000 words.

It found that many slightly misspelt sensitive words were underlined, but that Apple would not suggest their correct spelling, even if only one letter was incorrectly used at the end of a word.

"For example, if a user types 'abortiom' with an 'm' instead of an 'n', the software won't suggest a correction, as it would with nearly 150,000 other words," The Daily Beast wrote.

In a blog post explaining the analysis, The Daily Beast said it conducted it after reporters who were creating an interactive on abortion clinics in the US found that their iPhones wouldn't suggest the correct word for misspellings of "abortion" when they were emailing about it.

"We noticed that iOS never autocorrected this word when we misspelt it, and when we would double-tap the word to get spelling suggestions, the correctly spelled word was never an option."

It noted that many of the words Apple doesn't suggest the correct word for, or autocorrects, were accurately corrected under an earlier version of the iPhone and iPad operating system.

When it contacted Apple for comment, it said their spokesperson declined to comment.

Jillian York, the director for international freedom of expression at the Electronic Frontier Foundation, told The Daily Beast that Apple was one of the "most censorious companies".

"I hate to say it, but I don't think this should surprise anyone," she said of the findings, citing the company's history of censoring products in its app stores. She also noted Apple's lack of participation in the Global Network Initiative, a nonprofit partnership between tech giants, and a number of human-rights groups and other organisations advocating for free expression online.

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