Apple deems offence caused by homophobia an ‘appropriate’ reason to refund James Arthur track

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Controversy surrounding James Arthur’s Twitter spats around his use of homophobic lyrics on a track has escalated, as iTunes has approved a refund to a customer complained that they were offended.

X Factor winner Arthur earlier this week left Twitter following criticism for using homophobic language against another artist in a “rap feud”.

In Arthur’s rap at Micky Worthless, he said: “You f***ing queer. Hilarious, precarious you Talibani confused, imbellic mimic of a gimmick.” He was criticised by comedians Matt Lucas and Frankie Boyle for the lyrics.

James Arthur also found himself amid a new Twitter drama, as fellow X Factor contestant Lucy Spraggan tweeted a text conversation between the two containing a heated disagreement over his use of the word “queer”.

The refund in question was offered by iTunes to Twitter user @Louiloodle74. The user shared part of a customer serivice email from Apple.

It read: “I understand that you would like to cancel the album you have purchased because of the comments made by the artist which you didn’t like,” wrote the rep. “After reviewing the circumstances of your case, we have determined that issuing you a refund for your purchase of [the album] James Arthur is an appropriate exception to the iTunes store terms and conditions, which state that all sales are final.”

Other fans have since announced plans to apply for refunds. The Guardian reports that sales of Arthur’s album, which held the number 9 spot in last week’s chart, have fallen.