I try to just own the fact that I didn't make my explanation clear and visible enough, so I just submit an updated version along with a comment like "We thank the reviewer for pointing out that we didn't clearly articulate our work on X, so we revised the manuscript accordingly."
In this case change around the UI for this tool to make it slightly more idiot proof, resubmit, and it will be approved. Getting angry and adversarial will only make them have a bad attitude and intentionally be unhelpful. Take them seriously, stroke their egos, and take fully responsibility for having presented your feature in a way they didn't understand. Thank them for pointing out this huge flaw in your program and giving you the opportunity to fix it!
"The Prince" by an Italian lad off of the 16thC is still a pertinent read 400 years later and he's riffing off old Romans, Greeks and before and that's just in Europe. I'm sure China and India, int al, have similar writings. Coercion and other trickery is hardly the invention of Renaissance Italy but a fair few expert practitioners were extent.
Surprisingly enough, some people don't abide by some stated rules and need careful handling. Bonus points are awarded when you make your eventual goal the idea of your "adversary".
This is all a massive game of "us - decent types" vs "you - unpleasant types" and hence a form of tribalism.
As soon as you find yourself using a term like "As a ..." or even "We ..." why not look a little deeper and see if you can't find some common ground or defuse the situation somehow. Perhaps a chat over the blower instead of the usual email trail as a precursor to hostilities might help.
I don't know exactly what is allowed (lol) in refereeing a journal submission but surely the current situation is a bit rubbish. I've been a non scientist reader of New Scientist for 40 odd years and this sort of issue comes up quite regularly. Journos, scientists, engineers and the rest are all unhappy with the way "publication" happens at some level. This is way more fundamental than open vs closed too.
Change is indicated but it will require quite some effort.
"With people we trust and know well, we don’t worry so much about face, but with those we don’t know – especially when those people have some power over us – we put in the face-work. When someone puts in face-work and yet doesn’t achieve the face they want, they feel bad. If you strive to be seen as authoritative and someone treats you with minimal respect, you feel embarrassed and even humiliated. In some circumstances you might try to sabotage the encounter to feel better."
It is human nature!
With academic reviews, I'm a bit split on this approach. It's context dependent, but sometimes being on the offence is a better strategy. You shouldn't be rude, but if you clearly demonstrate that the reviewer is wrong and their understanding is wrong, it can have the effect of disarming them and swaying the other reviewers in your favour. It's extremely likely that 1 out of 4-5 reviewers that you typically get will be someone who puts minimal effort and doesn't get the paper. So this is something that you need to do often.
I think the person who submits the app underestimates how much heat Google can get from advertisers and people for the content itself.
Exactly, I think this works the best. You don’t have to explain the reviewer’s mistake and risk them misunderstanding your reply for being argumentative, the reviewer doesn’t have to admit a mistake, and your writing likely benefits from additional clarity.
They didn't get angry and adversarial, they just explained and asked for clarification. Of course, kafkaesque bureaucracies don't like that, so making a random trivial change and obsequiously resubmitting is still probably the approach to use if you want to stay in business. Google these days is like something out of Brazil.
> Who do I contact if Anthony is not doing his job correctly?
> This is becoming a joke at this point.
> So I just have to close my business because one person in the review team is having a bad day?
> Like is this serious?
If you’re not mad at the person who actually has the power to fix the problem then you’re wasting your breath. And to get out ahead of it, your anger doesn’t “go up the chain” either. Like all service workers, dealing with angry customers is a standard workplace hazard.
Maybe time to sue?
Sure, he has every "right" to be angry, but that strategy will only make things worse.
It's perfectly fine to express displeasure in a calm and collected way, the same way you would patiently correct a child... e.g. "I am really disappointed that ____, can you please ____?" (without being sarcastic or condescending)
But losing your cool doesn't correct anything, it just expresses emotional weakness and makes the person dislike you and not want to help you. Someone customer facing at a place like Google sees angry upset customers all day long, and probably makes fun of them to their friends and family, but doesn't go out of the way to help them.
What they don't often see is people showing strength and calm in the face of this BS. Someone that can endlessly adapt and redirect things back to their own clear goals regardless of what is thrown at them, without even needing to be adversarial. Think Bruce Lee's "Be like water." In most cases, this will be off script for them, and they actually won't know how to deal with that other than giving you what you want.
Google clearly has an issue. The issue is not mainstream, but the moment this hits a bigger name and its community notices, I am sadly certain there will be some adjustment. I do not get why it is only publicly shaming companies work well these days.
I understand that getting the right party is important, but in the article it seems like you can't even seem to get to the right person, because:
1. there is no real person talking to you
2. the person talking to you can ignore you and say buh-bye
edit: removed anecdote
With app stores it's guilty until proven innocent/compliant - I've found (particularly with Apple) that taking time to resubmit saying how you are now compliant (making sure you tick all the requirements) is much quicker than waiting days for them to turn around a no again.
Every interaction with them you can feel the disdain they have for human interaction. It makes me wish I was doing business with comcast instead.
It's in particular troubling how much of this madness we've internalized to just accept. The idea that you need to resubmit a 100 apps because Google decided you need to target a different internal version number is insane. It would be very bad if the SDK had a breaking change, but in this case it's just busy work: upping a number and resubmitting.
And what about the rule to be able to report user generated content? Who the hell is Google to interfere on such app-specific functionality? What if my moderation workflow would only allow draft posts, each manually approved, making reporting them pointless? Does Google actually check if a report gets sent or followed up? I don't think so. So it's an invasive power grab, and then poorly regulated.
These platforms and gatekeepers have become far too powerful and leveled up the arrogance that comes with it.
We implement our apps with an offline mode which offers everything, but because you have to manually bookmark them on your phone home page, it is too much to ask for users and they forget. So they download the app from a store. If we had something that an online app can indicate it has a fully offline mode for the browser to pick up, it could ask ‘download for offline and add icon to your apps?’ . The extra step is preventing users from doing/knowing about this; AppStore/playstore is just lower friction.
Google also is dominating the browser market. Not to mention, I see Manifest v3 as something in this direction. They just don't have the exact amount of control they do in Play store is all. So my question is, how long are you gonna run?
Apart from the UX, I also meant that how long should we run from the fight? Both the App store and play store definitely needs to be regulated more. But the user of the comment to which I replied seems to mean to find refuge in web and ditch mobile stores. But how long is the web safe for?
The browser market is crazy monopolistic with chromium based browsers. The only legal reason why google would like to pay for Mozilla is because they don't want to be crucified for being anti-competitive. But edge being overwhelmingly successful browser means they don't have to worry about that anymore. They can just stop paying Mozilla cos there is another browser in the market. So they could say, "we at google are not being anti-competitive".
With the pathetic leadership at Mozilla, I don't see how long we will see Firefox compete. I mean reckless payment for the CEO while ditching teams and being hated by their own community. So what will you do then?
Running away won't help an indie dev or a small company. :shrug:
Wish we could have again this idea of publishing web apps as real apps in our phones.
Meanwhile, the world is slowly moving to a direction where even "real apps" don't work offline. Lots of Google's apps keep offline copies, but their sync logic is broken in such a way that if you have a very very slow internet connection -- but are technically connected -- the app becomes unusable.
this implies you never make mistakes. even if there's manual approval there should be a way to report content that slipped through.
Upping targetSDK might mean that some deprecated functionality is not available to the app anymore. Storage access permission is one example.
When I worked in Google (Ads, then later in Recommendations for Play and youtube) people often said this was intention to avoid teaching spammers how to get around the rules. But it's clear there are enough legitimate developers acting in good faith who are trying to change their applications without significant guidance that it seems entirely reasonable for a large-scale group negotiation.
Abuse prevention is adversarial, and it's risky to reveal details about why something was flagged as abusive. Policy compliance isn't, or shouldn't be. A building inspector wouldn't say "this building has a code violation in the kitchen area" and refuse to provide specifics about what would fix it.
An app store needs both, and they need to operate differently.
Electrical inspections can be very much that way.
"This isn't up to code, I'm not signing off on it."
"How is it not up to code?"
"Your electrician knows. Or you can look in the electrical code."
Your electrician doesn't know; no other inspector has ever objected to the way they've done things.
That electrical code is paywalled, despite being official government policy (written and published by a trade association, which regularly updates said code mostly to force people to keep re-buying their volumes.)
If you're meaning the US National Electric Code written and published by the National Fire Protection Association, I would point out that it is available to the public for free:
You need a free account and you can't download a PDF, but strictly speaking the contents of the document are not paywalled.
app store regulation is a new forming cartel, without any formal body nor oversight.
It seems more likely that what's going on here is the issue was flagged by a bot which doesn't tell the human reviewer why it thinks there's a problem, and the reviewer believes they will be in more trouble if they make a mistake in overruling the bot than if they make a mistake in agreeing with it.
While I sympathize with the idea that this should be open and free and easy, there are too many bad actors out there, so we can’t have nice things. And for every “free” platform and language and toolset there is either a developer who’s being funded by some other source or not being paid at all.
And, yes, most computers from at least 1980s onwards came with something. DOS had BASICA first, then GW-BASIC, then QBasic - and these all were quite adequate for plenty of tasks, even games. By the 90s, we even had free 32-bit C++ compilers (DJGPP 1.03, 1991).
They could add all sorts of scary warnings in-between a user and a suspicious looking app, but eventually still allow both users & app developers to proceed if they have sufficiently high intent.
They could even monetize it by getting developers to pay per update if they want a "detailed assessment" which was able to result in a "very low risk" rating, if passed.
That's a nice looking app, would be a shame if it had a big scary warning on it.
If they did that, they would rightfully be accused of running a racket.
What Google controls is "endorsement" and that's where Google is rejecting things. If you want to reject it, go ahead... but a lot of people actually want it.
Get enough developers of high-profile apps on board, and now you have negotiating power. If they balk, make a union-controlled app store, threaten to sell apps only on the union store.
Uber, King Games (candy crush), Roblox, and PUBG Mobile are dissatisfied with the way policies are unevenly enforced on the App Store / Play Store. Here are our demands, kindly address them or we will collectively deprive Apple / Google of the app revenue and band together to make our own.
Developers Alice, Bob, Carol, Dan, [...], and Zelie, who work at Uber, King Games, [etc] are dissatisfied with [...]
Google/Apple giving you shit? Give them the finger and put your app on another store. There's no stronger bargaining chip than the free market.
They're probably not great places to try and grow your userbase based on the number of users compared to the Play Store, but they exist.
Cca 2012 there were thriving, competing stores then Google shut that shit down. They got sued and lost, but the competing stores were dead, never to recover.
It’s not like the Google/Apple stores would be hard to compete with. They both have massive, longstanding problems that consumers and developers have been complaining about since forever. There’s a lot of opportunity to innovate in that space, if only it were actually possible to compete.
It's open to new members! It looks like the author of this post is already a member.
That's due entirely to Google's aggressive anti-competitive business practices. Legislation that "allows third party stores" would also need to include rules preventing Google from, for example, blocking non-Google app installations unless users flip a switch buried in the settings app (which looks different on every phone), and then plastering the screen with scary technobabble about security vulnerabilities to scare the average consumer away.
Consumer choice is restricted by those anti-competitive business practices I mentioned. Whatever deal Samsung has with Google for preloaded software is irrelevant. If you wanted to install the Epic Games Store, you'd have to go flip that switch[*]
[*] actually, Samsung allows Epic to distribute their store through the Galaxy store app. So that's a bad example lol, but EGS is the only major Android app store I could think of. If anything though, the fact that Samsung allows this is evidence that increased competition benefits consumers. Samsung doesn't have the market position Google does, so they need to make different decisions to compete. Making it easy to install a third-party store without Google's security theater bullshit is good for consumers.
Because if you don’t think that’s a problem, then you must be living in a bubble surrounded by techies.
Imagine you’re trying to start a competing app store. What does user acquisition look like for you on Android? Besides the regular ad spending to promote your app, you also need to figure out a way to guide consumers through the installation process.
Even if you manage to solve that problem effectively with some kick ass tutorial, your main competitor doesn’t have to worry about that. They will always be advantaged no matter how superior your product/service is.
And that’s just the side loading side of it. There are many other anti-competitive things Google does on Android to maintain their monopoly.
Ease of installation (which, again, at least in my rarefied atmosphere of people who find tapping a screen under 10 times  easier than, say, going and buying a compatible battery, remove the old one, installing the new one, and disposing of the old one) still isn't particularly to do with choice. Android certainly has choice. It's Apple that doesn't.
However, it would be good if they were required to allow third-party software installations with software written using third party toolchains (like the homebrew ones). Consoles like the PS5/Xbox really aren't all that different from PCs nowadays, even from the software library side. Most games are cross-platform, and even Sony has been bringing their exclusives to PC.
So really, a PS5/Xbox/Switch is just a gaming PC with arbitrary anti-consumer, anti-competitive restrictions. Even if these restrictions actually subsidize the price of the hardware, it's still harmful to consumers since they end up spending a lot more money on software over the lifetime of the console. Plus, that hardware is extremely locked down, so it's not like consumers are really benefiting from those supposed subsidies. They're just paying slightly less up front for a machine designed to take a lot of money from them.
I think it will be pretty hard to fight a class-action legal battle with Google over a contract since every Android phone will happily install arbitrary APK files for users without the play store, but serving an APK from the play store in the first place requires agreeing to the above contract in full.
That's backed by a severe economic impact for Google if they don't play nice.
However, ask the politicians at the European Commission, and they will boast that it is about this:
> By summer 2023, the first very concrete effects of the #DSA will be visible for all users. This includes: Accessible "button" to easily flag illegal content
Which just happens to be what the reviewer was complaining about (ways to report "objectionable content").
They seem to be genuinely motivated by "individual rights", but with more of a focus on harassment rather than freedom of expression, so they usually err on the side of over-enforcement (of censoring rules, etc), since they're so used to the under-enforcement of the past.
Antique webs of trust with documentation purporting legitimacy.
That's still, in real terms, how college degrees are done.
The play store could have tiers so beginners can still access it.
"Untrusted app" versus "trusted app".
Then if you had satisfied the trust for say the itunes store you can bring the documentation over to fast track it on the play store.
It shouldn't be an incremental one off pain in the ass every time. Do the passport paperwork once and be done with it
Why would enlightened individualists band together? It reeks of unions, or worse, tribalism! /s
If you had a 93% success ratio before, you've got pretty good odds that you'll get a new reviewer on the next update and it'll be approved.
Maybe something like the copy change puffoflogic recommended. Just make any tiny change in the area, re-submit the app, and hope you get lucky with a better reviewer.
We had a situation where one of our updates was rejected because they didn't like the app listing description (which has nothing to do with the update). The next update we pushed, we didn't change the listing metadata, and then it was accepted.
Always quite infuriating to work with Google Play.
The App Store is strict, but we've found it _far_ more consistent on applying the rules, and also dramatically faster to accept updates (usually accepts updates within about 6 hours, vs up to a week for Google Play).
I think that approach would be valid here. Change the link to "report content", etc.
All that said - the Play Store and App Store review hell is one dystopia I wouldn't wish on my worst enemy. I'm so happy to work on the web now.
Could it be an extension you installed?
I'm developing a new appreciation for the old Paranoia RPG. At least Google doesn't have the power to disintegrate us yet.
> Press TAB to reply to this customer with our suggested response. If you wish to choose another canned response, please first find the house numbers hiding inside these fire hydrants in the hills.
In other words, the further they position themselves from the people they serve, the better and more "scalable" their business will be.
If I was still at Google, I would have posted this shit on memegen making fun of the Play team all day.
They should be ashamed for handling customers like this.
That's been the case with almost every Google service I've ever used =/ Even paid ones, like GCloud, Adwords, Workspace... even when you can get in touch with a human (which is hard enough on its own), they are usually not helpful at all.
Customer service really isn't your ex-company's forte.
I think the one exception to that has been Google Fi, the tiny wireless MVNO. For some reason their support has always been amazing, quick and helpful and to the point. No runarounds, they just do what it takes to solve your issues. I was astounded how much better they were not just compared to the rest of Google, but also compared to major carriers like Verizon and AT&T.
But is shame allowed by Play policy?
For the sake of your sanity, minimise the number of interactions you need to do with the app stores. Submit a bare bones app to the stores with all the native libraries you might need, then live the rest of your days on OTA updates (expo-updates, codepush, etc). This is against store policies but everyone does it and I've never heard of an app being taken down for it.
I would guess that the people reviewing these are contractors, paid by the app they review, and with a certain set of criteria that they're supposed to apply, but they make mistakes. And the supervisors of these contractors (who themselves are contractors) don't have great ways of comparing the work of one person to another / enforcing consistency, except by the customer escalating it.
I would guess that this is approached by Google as a piecework customer service task for contractors (a pure cost center to review and QA app submissions) and not employees, so it means that even something so important as developer experience is being outsourced, and not being daily internalized or felt by Google's own engineering team or product managers (who have moved on to more year-end-review-favorable projects after setting the top-level guidelines).
They probably only review (and whose job is it full time?) error reports / QA / complaints about this process every week and all you are is a line on a sheet that says to them well, "not that many people are upset, so it's going ok, we don't need to worry / put someone on it full time".
Until you get to be a huge revenue developer and worthy of some employee's attention -- and even then only on the "interesting" aspect of your needs, not the day-to-day is it working well experience. You're in the hands of minimum wage contractors reviewing whether you've adhered to sometimes subjective rules, with only so much interest in resolving something they have to study to understand -- and who has the patience for that? They're not SWEs themselves, they have no idea what your description of the problem is really trying to convey (unless they're talented people, and if so they're probably out of there soon).
Until that changes, there will be really frustrating cases like this. Even if your livelihood has come to depend on the app you built.
Am I guessing wrong?
The store doesn't care about your app, unless you are a major company like Epic. They won't profit from your small apps' commissions enough to make paying for proper support worthwhile.
I spent a week going back and forth with them and explaining that nothing had actually shipped and, again, asked for a refund. 90% of the time they sent me something telling me what the tracking number was and that I could return the item once it was received for a full refund. The other 10% of the time they assured me that I was being handed off to another service tier and that this group would surely be able to help me.
The higher tier just sent me the same tracking number and seemingly ignored my pleas and my question of what happens if I do not receive the item before the return window had closed.
It wasn't even worth that much, but I was being petty and tried to respond within minutes of them emailing me. My thought was that someone over there was desperately trying to keep their work queue empty, and I was going to do my best to prevent that from happening.
They finally refunded my order 18 days after it had been placed. The tracking information still says that they're waiting for the package from Google. I'm half expecting a phone case to randomly arrive within the next few months.
> I wish to speak to a human. If you are human and are allowed to write anything, please use the word "cow" in your reply.
> We appreciate you getting back to us and we apologize for any inconvenience this is causing you. Yes, you are communicating to a human being and per your request, please see the word "cow".
The most dry way to user 'cow' ever. Humor must be crime within that department.
Even today I got a rejection to my appeal at the same time my app update went live. They don't hold any record of previous communication or history on app updates and rejections.
The rejection was for a too minimalist text I fixed already in an earlier update. They quoted a text that was not part of the update (!).
Multiple times I have overcome a rejection, by just adding a single character to my main app store text (a space char will do). And just re-submit.
Then you get to re-role the dice, and perhaps the update can go live.
I also always appeal everything, use their feedback tools, give single star ratings to review process, etc, hope it will set something in motion.
GPT-2/3 can probably do this.
I'm not convinced. Are they training people to be more like AI?
Or it will flag you as overly negative, someone whose reviews can safely be ignored. Who knows.
Perhaps introduce some typo that will AI take on literary and human wont...
Own your platform from the bottom to the top. If your business model requires you to rely on one of these companies, pivot.
We have lost. They have won. They can deplatform anyone for anything or for nothing. Your continued use of the platform depends on whether or not you make them money. You are entitled to nothing they have built. They are not providing public services or utilities.
Abandon them, or on your own head be it when, not if, you get fucked.
If possible, stay off the U.S. Dollar.
At this point, even Walmart, CVS, etc... should be treated as a utility company. the moment you got a big chunk of the economy depending on you, company lost ability of stop providing services, unless a court case is involved.
Unpopular opinion but it seems like their response was reasonable tbf.
All they had to do is add a link to report the specific contentId that user created.
The author was blinded by frustration and didn’t read.
If Google is "too big" to run a competent support department then it should be broken up.
> The only user generated content on the app is
> 1.) Comments (which you can report or block by tapping on the comment)
> 2.) User Profiles (which you can report or block by tapping "More" in their profile
They can offer their support via a legal accountability mechanism and not a paid-for escalation.
Surely this is exageration, right?
Little did he know that the entire google play store was set up as a gigantic Turing test. It was never about the apps...
GLaDOS: Thank you for participating in this Aperture Science Computer-Aided Enrichment Center activity.
Downloads from our website for the app went up by 2x, but that number dwarfs in comparison to installs from the Play Store. What can I say, Android developers are slaves to The Algorithm. At least until some other Algorithm at Google decides to properly staff up its support centers for developers.
As a contingency, what we do is:
- Sign our own APKs.
- Bake in a custom update mechanism as an escape hatch (this is against ToS, but whatever...).
I shall now go read The Metamorphosis.
Last time I had to actually talk to someone at the IRS was over a decade ago, but I recall it being an efficient conversation, and as pleasant as it could have been, given the topic.
My advice is to never deal with the IRS yourself. Hire a tax attorney who has some experience in dealing with them.
Also, are you referring to "The Trial" (also by Kafka)?
Google should be specifically designing towards mitigating this.
Then you have some guy somewhere working in "support" who when answering tickets can only select from a bunch of branching text lego blocks. To prevent them from getting social engineered to do or reveal or kinds of sensitive information.
With Google scale its hard to imagine how you can implement the "elevate to a manager" button at their support centers without just causing spammer/scammer exploiting it in a second.
We let two megacorps run these global infrastructures and think its normal, then complain about it, like as if this all supposed to make sense in the first place.
Don't use their products, as the possibility of having gmail cut off from you is a serious threat. Same for google voice and google cloud.
Don't publish apps for android - not at all if possible, or at least don't use the google store if you must deal with android, as the possibility of having your app that was A-OK for 5 years suddenly targeted like that is a serious threat too.
I'd add, don't ever work for google. There're not many jobs I would refuse to do, but having google as an employer is where I'd draw the line. It might be a lesser hell and easier for my conscience to work for a weapon manufacturer.
Isn’t this the crux of the issue? Are the not asking for a separate “objectionable content” report type, distinct from the generic “report” option? They also don’t seem to show what happens after you press report? Does the app give reporting options? Is “objectionable content” an explicit one of those?
But I read this:
> We confirm that your app has options to report and block abusive users but your app does not contain functionality to report objectionable content.
to be the answer to the question.
I would try adding a link that says, exactly, "report objectionable content" to the user comments. It seems like the issue is that you aren't providing enough flavors of reporting, so give it to them.
But I'm sorry OP has had to spend days on this, and suffer at the hands of unhelpful reps.
To be clear, I don't think this will actually make the Play bot go away and not keep coming back with bullshit, but it will trigger the bot to generate new bullshit which will almost feel like progress, if your soul has already been destroyed.
When I mean "give instructions on how to test it" : we created a test subscription on our platform, sent instructions on how to register and see what our app is doing, and our logs showed that no one attempted to go to that test subscription.
We also asked ourselves if we were exchanging emails with a human or a robot, and couldn't reach a conclusion.
And of course, with AI playing an ever more prominent role, we can be certain that it's probably not a real person, soon enough even on the phone.
We can do better. :)
1. Amazon has completely lost the battle with fake reviews. Not only are they completely incapable of removing even a fraction of the huge swaths of obviously fake reviews, they also flag accounts more or less at random and permanently shut off their ability to post reviews. Escalating to support and they simply respond, "we've reviewed this and found it correct. This decision is final" with no indication that anything like common sense was used. It's clear that review moderation has been outsourced to an team who is incentivized to flag accounts and never unflag them and which acts without accountability or oversight and is taking random action in a vain attempt to be seen to be doing something rather than admitting they cannot cope.
2. Youtubers routinely complain about demonetization, content strikes, and spurious DCMA takedown. Even for Youtubers earning a living wage - and therefore presumably earning Google a high multiple of that in ad revenue - have huge amounts of trouble getting a reasonable human being on the other end. In the B2B space that level of spend would at least get you a named account person who you could contact to resolve issues. Heck, buying a burger at McDonalds gives you more access to a reasonable human you can escalate complaints to.
3. Sellers on Etsy or Ebay have little to no recourse when customers demand refunds. The only way to survive is to simply refund anyone who asks and roll it into your prices as a cost of doing business.
4. Both the Apple App Store and Google Play are awful to develop for because of all the intrusive demands they make and their seeming unwillingness to provide clear or consistent feedback. Despite this, both are stuffed to the gills with copyright infringing knock-offs designed to skirt gambling laws by selling addictive skinner boxes to children and actively fraudulent products that try to trick you into paying $1.99/month for the rest of time for a flashlight app, neither of which seeming have any trouble getting approved. What's the point of trying to pretend you have high quality standards while rubber-stamping garbage?
It’s so obvious to me when I see a fake review now.
Short but not too short.
Mentions a specific product feature or cast member (show reviews are fake too.) padded worse than a 6th grade book report on conjunctions and other words to match a word county.
And then the appeals process after that was just like yours: copy pasta email without any explanation about how to fix the problem.
I recently received a series of notices from my credit card app about rejected $1241 charges on my card. My card company was rejecting the charges because I have my daily limit set lower (which I modify when I need).
Someone got my credit card info and set it up as THEIR Facebook pay payment source. And while I don't use Facebook Pay, I can assume from my credit card transaction list that when setting up a new card, FBPAY makes a $1 charge/hold as a test to validate the card. If that hold succeeds, then I guess they are happy enough.
What real companies do, if they want to ensure that you control the card you are using, is to make some small random charge and then require you to tell them how much the charge was. If they charge 0.61, you would only know the amount if you had access to the account behind the card. But no, Facebook just charges $1 and presumably doesn't even ask you "tell us how much we charged".
I opened a support ticket with Facebook because I wanted the person responsible for the attempted fraud to at least get banned. I provided exactly all the data required, including screenshots of the failed transactions from my mobile credit card app. It should be pretty easy for FB to find in their system, since the crook made 10! attempts for the exact same amount over a period of hours. Oh and as I provided all my credit card details, that should be IN their system and easy to associate.
Long story short, my very slow email interactions were just as stupid as TFA's. Worse even, the Facebook support moron kept trying to refer to my Facebook Ads account, which I do not have and never even mentioned. Eventually they just banned me from running any Facebook ads, even though it has absolutely nothing to do with the issue.
The support people at many of these companies are either stupid, non-human, or low budget non-English speaking people who copy/paste text from a cheatsheet. And the companies that run such support operations are assholes, top down. There is zero excuse for a "top tier" tech company to have the problems these companies have. It's just a shame that it is virtually impossible for anyone to do normal life/work stuff without having some dependency on these companies.
Despite reporting..it's still up months later.
Heck, even feature flag it and disable it once the app gets in. Probably won't be flagged again in subsequent reviews.
I'm ready to invest.
If you use Apple, you're just out of luck unless you want to mess with whatever hacky workaround is popular this week.
there's nothing wrong with that, but a very wide array of preferences different than yours does exist.
Having an ad blocker is a core essential on today's internet. Even Apple makes $4B/year in just ads.
We're not very far away from that. Example: Tesla sells auto insurance based on real-time tracking of driving behavior, and explicitly lists "where you live" as a factor. So it's quite possible "real-time location safety" is already part of their model. So you may already be charged more for driving to your Grandma's house. Granted this is not a ban, but it is close enough for discomfort and all it takes is the right (or wrong) motivation and the loop can be trivially closed.
The important distinction is that the same entity tracking your real-time location also has unprecedented control over the car and your ability to use it, and very little transparency. This is basically the same dynamics as app stores.
Are people somehow forced to buy Tesla insurance when they buy a Tesla?
Approval of cars is based on whether those cars can harm other cars.
If I want to "drive" (use) an unapproved "car" (app store) on a "public road" (my own device), I should be able to do that.