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Banned 500px photo app returns to iOS -- with age restriction 

500px's iOS photo app.500px

The photo-sharing app 500px has returned to Apple's App Store after a week's absence, after being kicked out for allegedly providing easy access to pornographic material. The new app has a few changes — and a 17+ age restriction.

Apple removed the app suddenly last week and informed the creators that nude images were too easy to find, and there were also reportedly some concerns about child pornography. Representatives from 500px said at the time they were already working on updating the app to meet Apple's guidelines.

It arrived back in the store Tuesday, with a tweaked search that makes it a bit more difficult to accidentally come across images that could be construed as pornographic. A new "report" button makes it easy to flag photos that users find offensive.

The controversy surrounding Apple's ratings remains, however, especially in light of Twitter's new Vine video-sharing app, which retains a 12+ age rating despite hardcore porn videos turning up on it almost immediately.

And as users pointed out, other apps with less-restrictive ratings also allow users to easily find porn, but have not been booted from the App Store or had their ratings raised. Apple seems to be bearing this criticism in silence, and has avoided directly addressing the larger issues of app ratings and censorship.

Whatever the accuracy or effectiveness of its age restriction, 500px is now available for download, for free, at the App Store. Their Android app is rated for users of "high maturity," but was never removed by Google.

Devin Coldewey is a contributing writer for NBC News Digital. His personal website is