back to article Mysterious case of Arizona state senators skipping a vote on tackling Apple and Google's app commissions

A law bill proposed in Arizona that would allow app developers to avoid Apple and Google's mandatory in-app payment systems and associated commission fees has stalled – after state senators mysteriously skipped a vote on it. The legislation was put forward by state House Representative Regina Cobb (R) and narrowly passed the …

  1. HildyJ Silver badge


    "It’s unclear if the vote has been merely postponed, or if the bill is now unlikely to ever be put to a vote."

    ElReg is being uncharacteristically generous. Maybe because it's late at night and people wanted to logoff for the day.

    It is very clear that the fix is in and the bill has been dropped in the shredder, never to be seen again in this legislative session.

    1. diodesign (Written by Reg staff) Silver badge

      Relax, buddy

      What we meant was: the committee hasn't been forthcoming on what its intentions are and the reasons for stalling the bill. I've reworded that sentence to reflect this.


      1. LDS Silver badge

        Re: Relax, buddy

        Of course. Telling it is rejected may not be popular, just as telling why it was postponed, so just let in a limbo "sure, we're evaluating it, maybe one day it will be brought to vote (when the hell freezes, eh eh)".

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Unclear?

      The understatement triggers the mind to itself create the whole image in the subconscious, which is then stored in long term memory as the readers own experience - it makes reading a full mind and body experience as in "Altered States" []. The overstatement triggers an unpleasant immune reaction and makes tedious reading. IMHO.

  2. Whitter
    Thumb Down

    He who pays the piper...

    People vote for their representatives. They don't pay them.

    It appears there is a significant difference.

    1. LDS Silver badge

      "They don't pay them."

      They pay them as well, but representative want even more money and lobbies are there to provide them.

  3. Dinanziame Silver badge
    Paris Hilton

    Would it be constitutional?

    The United States do have a weird legal system, but it also feels a bit weird for one state to void contractual conditions imposed by Apple on app makers in every other state, in fact that I know in every other country. The words interstate commerce come to mind, and it definitely feels like something that is the remit of the federal government.

    Come to think of it, how come not a single country has come forward with such a law already? Surely Apple cannot buy off all of them?

    1. SImon Hobson Silver badge

      Re: Would it be constitutional?

      I don't know what the law says about this, but why not ? A lot of laws exist to explicitly impose or nullify contractual terms. For example, in the UK, the UTCCRs (Unfair Terms in Consumer Contract Regulations) basically say that if a consumer contract contains certain types of clauses then those clauses are automatically void and unenforceable. Similarly, the SOGAS (Sale of Goods and Services) Act basically says that any consumer contract is assumed by law to contain certain clauses giving consumers certain rights.

      As to inter-state trade, that's already "complicated" by different tax laws, different age of consent laws, etc, etc, etc.

  4. Big_Boomer Silver badge

    Land of the Free....

    .. to buy off those who make the law. Not that it's any better here in Brexshit land or most other countries for that matter. I find it hilarious that many in the West still think of certain countries as "corrupt" when their elected representatives are all busy lining their own pockets right there in there own country/state They are just like that customs agent asking for an incentive to smooth your journey through his area. I don't know if any of you have also had to complete anti-corruption courses? I've done several as we have annual refresher courses and every time I do one I ask myself "Why is this all illegal, yet our chosen politicians seem to do this every day and with seemingly total impunity?" Why do we elect bent politicians?

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Land of the Free....

      Brexshit land - wow did you come up with that one yourself, or did you get a small child to help?

      1. Big_Boomer Silver badge

        Re: Land of the Free....

        Ooooh look, an Anonymous Coward Troll. How do you manage to speak with your own **** in your mouth?

    2. martyn.hare

      Re: Land of the Free....

      Brexit is better than the alternative. The EU Parliament can’t even propose legislation and can only vote on the things a bunch of lobbied (corrupt) leaders of EU countries have decided to push for, it’s a cruel joke.

      With that said, perhaps it is about time we banned corporate donations entirely, capped individual donations to a modest (four digit) maximum per year and required open books on financial assets for all our politicians. That would throw a spanner in the works for corrupt lobbying while allowing for legitimate approaches to take place.

      1. Big_Boomer Silver badge

        Re: Land of the Free....

        And the EU Parliament was hamstrung by?..... Yup, the UK, French and German politicians not wanting to lose any of their precious power. As for the Commission, almost entirely the UK's idea and a bloody awful one at that. It should have been the EUs Civil Service but ended up as the political football of each countries governments. Regardless, it was still better than our outdated attempt at democracy and government.

        Totally agree with you on the political donations, but all that will do is push the "reward" for being a good little lapdog further down the line, where they get their payoff after their term has finished and they go to work for their owners.

  5. jason_derp Silver badge

    Overly Optimistic Developers

    When will all these silly people learn that their government is beholden to only specific people. Corporate people. The rest of them have no place in the system, they don't belong there. They'd be happier someplace else

  6. John Savard Silver badge

    Obvious Explanation

    I'm sure that the people of Arizona would be very upset if they could no longer get new apps for their smartphones, because Apple and Google decided to stop doing business in that state. So, once the legislators realized that it would be very stupid of them to try and make such a law, even if what they were hoping to achieve with that law was popular, this happened. Bribery isn't needed.

    1. Filippo Silver badge

      Re: Obvious Explanation

      That would mean Apple and Google are effectively too big to be regulated. I find the prospect scarier than plain old bribery.

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Obvious Explanation

      We sort of saw that in Australia recently when an argumanet that "the US tech companies ought to pay local new companies for all the stories they 'steal'" led to Facebook deciding that it would prevent anyone putting this material on their sites and immediately the argument morphed into "how dare these US tech companies prevent stories from local news companies appearing on their pages".

      I'm waiting for the time when someone like the EU passes some new rules and Google or Amazon or Facebook announce that "as they want to ensure they are fully compliant that they will be suspending all services in the area for a few days while they check that they are compliant" and see how the general public react when their bread'n'circuses are turned off

      1. SImon Hobson Silver badge

        Re: Obvious Explanation

        Except that none of those companies could afford the shitstorm that would create, or the loss of custom. Also, it would play directly into the hands of the legislators and potential competitors who could, quite rightly, label them as a bunch of criminals trying to blackmail the EU.

        In theory, it would be quite possible for a region as large as the EU to simply ban any of them - and have all internet providers/carriers intercept their traffic and forward it to somewhere else, where the user would get a message to the effect that "This service has been banned for criminal activity". I'm sure Microsoft would be more than happy to step in with Bing and take up the search engine slack if Google got banned.

        And yes, it would be trivial to deal with the SSL certificate problem ...

  7. oiseau Silver badge


    This sparked fears of backroom deals and political chicanery.

    Hmmm ...

    How about this:

    This was evidence of backroom deals and political chicanery.


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