New iPhone app allows uploads from Iran to VOA

The US Government’s Voice of America (VOA) released a Web application that will allow users in Iran to download and send content to VOA’s Persian News Network (PNN). The application is available for iPhones and Android’s and will be (is?) on Apple App Store, PNN’s website, and on PNN’s Facebook page.

According to the VOA, VOA has the largest combined radio and television audience in Iran of all international broadcasters, with one in four adult Iranians tuning in to a VOA program once a week. PNN broadcasts seven hours of television daily, repeated in a 24 hour format, and five hours of radio. Programming is also available around the clock on the Internet.

According to PNN’s acting director, Alex Belida,

This new application gives Iranians a unique opportunity to get the latest news on their mobile devices and to share with the world the news as it happens in their country. It is a groundbreaking way to expand our reach inside Iran and deepen our relationship with a key VOA audience.

On Twitter, Dan McSwain asked whether the VOA app protected personal and if SD cards would be distributed to Iranians. Here is the response from the apps developer, Intridea:

The iPhone application does not send or extract any private information from the user's iPhone while submitting any reports.  The reports are indeed anonymous.  … the iPhone doesn't support SD cards.