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01-18-2014 02:54 AM
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  1. windoors's Avatar
    Friends,
    Fake apps are posing a threat to the reliability of app store and security of fellow Windows Phone users. Many of these apps have five-star ratings and luring names. Many would have reported such apps already, but reports are either being overlooked or still insufficient in numbers. What do you think WPCentral community can contribute towards identifying and removing such apps from the store?
    Last edited by windoors; 01-07-2014 at 09:57 AM.
    xandros9 and shamrock1988 like this.
    01-05-2014 12:38 PM
  2. windoors's Avatar
    e.g. Can we start a sticky thread like "Fake App Alerts"?
    snowmutt likes this.
    01-05-2014 12:41 PM
  3. CGA111's Avatar
    I have contributed by reporting fake Firefox and Opera apps but they are still there. Problem is too few people care.
    01-05-2014 01:26 PM
  4. Laura Knotek's Avatar
    Report them to Microsoft and to the original developer. For example, one could report a fake Firefox app to Mozilla. Violating Website Report — Mozilla
    01-05-2014 01:43 PM
  5. hopmedic's Avatar
    Yes - do both things that Laura suggests. Every app in the store has a link to report a problem to Microsoft. But Microsoft has not taken on the role of enforcing the intellectual property of others. They will not remove infringing apps unless they receive notice from the owner of the IP. So contacting the owner of the IP (Mozilla in the case of Firefox, as stated above) will alert the owner of the IP, who may (or may not) choose to contact Microsoft and/or the app developer. Contacting Microsoft may not get an immediate action, but it will alert them that there is a problem, and if there are enough complaints, who knows?
    Laura Knotek and snowmutt like this.
    01-05-2014 06:47 PM
  6. m3kk's Avatar
    Its also pretty stupid that it seems fine for multiple people to upload different apps with exact same name.."Facebook" example. That must also be sorted. I report every app I find
    snowmutt and FinancialP like this.
    01-05-2014 07:07 PM
  7. Skynetz's Avatar
    It would be good to have a thread with fake apps, so the original devs and MS too could check and remove them eventually.
    01-05-2014 07:24 PM
  8. hopmedic's Avatar
    Its also pretty stupid that it seems fine for multiple people to upload different apps with exact same name.."Facebook" example. That must also be sorted. I report every app I find
    I agree, but I thought that facebook had flexed their muscle and fixed this (I haven't searched it, so I don't know).
    Facebook demanding 3rd party apps be removed from the Windows Phone Store over trademark claim | Windows Phone Central
    01-05-2014 08:50 PM
  9. Laura Knotek's Avatar
    Yes - do both things that Laura suggests. Every app in the store has a link to report a problem to Microsoft. But Microsoft has not taken on the role of enforcing the intellectual property of others. They will not remove infringing apps unless they receive notice from the owner of the IP. So contacting the owner of the IP (Mozilla in the case of Firefox, as stated above) will alert the owner of the IP, who may (or may not) choose to contact Microsoft and/or the app developer. Contacting Microsoft may not get an immediate action, but it will alert them that there is a problem, and if there are enough complaints, who knows?
    I did report a fake Firefox app last year, and it was pulled from the Store. While I was at it now, I just reported 3 more fake Firefox apps (to Mozilla and Microsoft), and I reported a fake Chrome app (to Google and Microsoft).
    01-05-2014 11:23 PM
  10. ShreyansShah's Avatar
    01-05-2014 11:41 PM
  11. m3kk's Avatar
    I agree, but I thought that facebook had flexed their muscle and fixed this (I haven't searched it, so I don't know).
    Facebook demanding 3rd party apps be removed from the Windows Phone Store over trademark claim | Windows Phone Central
    Yeah I seem to remember this. Wouldn't it be better to block a user from uploading an app with the same name? I just searched "Facebook" to count ..i lost track! There is too many! And I'm not even talking about names like facebookHD etc.. :/
    Edit: counted to 13
    01-06-2014 01:33 AM
  12. CGA1's Avatar
    Report them to Microsoft and to the original developer. For example, one could report a fake Firefox app to Mozilla. Violating Website Report €” Mozilla
    Done. Anyone who knows where to report Opera fakes?
    01-06-2014 05:05 AM
  13. hopmedic's Avatar
    Done. Anyone who knows where to report Opera fakes?
    I took a brief look at their website and it doesn't look like they have a contact email, so I'd go for the forums. My Opera - Forums Find the forum that looks most appropriate, I'd say either general or mobile, and put up a post. After you post it, check to see if there is a report this post link, and click it yourself to alert moderators, to be sure they see it. That's what I'd do.
    01-06-2014 09:22 AM
  14. windoors's Avatar
    Done. Anyone who knows where to report Opera fakes?
    Even I've gone through their website, but nope!
    I think we can use their official Facebook page: http://www.facebook.com/Opera
    Last edited by windoors; 01-06-2014 at 09:40 AM.
    01-06-2014 09:28 AM
  15. hopmedic's Avatar
    I've also gone through their website, but nope!
    I think we can use their official Facebook page: http://www.facebook.com/Opera
    That's probably a better suggestion than mine. Thanks!
    01-06-2014 09:32 AM
  16. windoors's Avatar
    Friends,
    I am expecting some discussion on mechanisms which can assist in the process of removal of such apps.
    I think WPCentral must have some members who actually work for Microsoft!
    01-06-2014 09:45 AM
  17. FinancialP's Avatar
    Its also pretty stupid that it seems fine for multiple people to upload different apps with exact same name.."Facebook" example. That must also be sorted. I report every app I find
    Yeah I seem to remember this. Wouldn't it be better to block a user from uploading an app with the same name? I just searched "Facebook" to count ..i lost track! There is too many! And I'm not even talking about names like facebookHD etc.. :/
    Edit: counted to 13
    I noticed this a year ago and it's a serious problem.

    These apps with the exact same name, and even exact same icon sometimes, just a different publisher are inflating the store numbers.

    This is a real issue that needs to be corrected. Especially the fake apps like Chrome that is charging people money.
    01-06-2014 10:02 AM
  18. hopmedic's Avatar
    I agree, but the problem is that I don't necessarily think that Microsoft should be the police agency to enforce IP rights. Just one example of why is take an app that isn't developed by the IP owner, but the developer may have approached the IP owner and worked with them on development, and has permission to use the IP involved. Microsoft isn't a party to that agreement, and really shouldn't be, since they are just the proprietor of the store where the goods are being sold. That puts the burden of enforcing IP rights on the owner of the IP. Yes, that's a daunting task, and I wouldn't want to have to monitor all of the possible outlets where rights can be infringed, but with the help of people like us in the community, those IP owners can be notified of possible violations, and they can choose whether to send a C&D or not.

    Just an example using one of my own apps:
    I've created an app called PlusPoints. It is a twist on Weight Watchers' PointsPlus program for counting food points. I have been careful not to use their trademarked PointsPlus name, the Weight Watchers name, or their logo. I think I mention that it follows the Weight Watchers PointsPlus guidelines, but I'm not claiming to be them. I use their formula, to the best that I was able to reverse engineer it, and it seems to be accurate with all the testing I've done, but that's ok, too - courts have determined that mathematical formulae cannot be copyrighted or trademarked.

    If Microsoft were in the business of enforcing IP rights that they don't own, would they block my app? I don't know, though I suspect it would depend on how new the guy was who was sitting in the chair at the time my app was reviewed.

    BTW, I have never received any C&D from WW. The only action they have taken is to block me on Twitter. Oh - and my app has been in the store for almost three years now, and has 4+ star ratings while theirs has 2, and if you search Weight Watchers in the store, my app comes up third, while theirs comes up fourth.
    snowmutt likes this.
    01-06-2014 10:29 AM
  19. m3kk's Avatar
    I agree, but the problem is that I don't necessarily think that Microsoft should be the police agency to enforce IP rights. Just one example of why is take an app that isn't developed by the IP owner, but the developer may have approached the IP owner and worked with them on development, and has permission to use the IP involved. Microsoft isn't a party to that agreement, and really shouldn't be, since they are just the proprietor of the store where the goods are being sold. That puts the burden of enforcing IP rights on the owner of the IP. Yes, that's a daunting task, and I wouldn't want to have to monitor all of the possible outlets where rights can be infringed, but with the help of people like us in the community, those IP owners can be notified of possible violations, and they can choose whether to send a C&D or not.

    Just an example using one of my own apps:
    I've created an app called PlusPoints. It is a twist on Weight Watchers' PointsPlus program for counting food points. I have been careful not to use their trademarked PointsPlus name, the Weight Watchers name, or their logo. I think I mention that it follows the Weight Watchers PointsPlus guidelines, but I'm not claiming to be them. I use their formula, to the best that I was able to reverse engineer it, and it seems to be accurate with all the testing I've done, but that's ok, too - courts have determined that mathematical formulae cannot be copyrighted or trademarked.

    If Microsoft were in the business of enforcing IP rights that they don't own, would they block my app? I don't know, though I suspect it would depend on how new the guy was who was sitting in the chair at the time my app was reviewed.

    BTW, I have never received any C&D from WW. The only action they have taken is to block me on Twitter. Oh - and my app has been in the store for almost three years now, and has 4+ star ratings while theirs has 2, and if you search Weight Watchers in the store, my app comes up third, while theirs comes up fourth.
    Haha:) well for starters add a block like "oops! The name of the app you are trying to upload is for the moment already in use. Contact developer of app: yes / no"
    I dunno
    01-06-2014 10:50 AM
  20. etad putta's Avatar
    Please excuse my ignorance, i don't use a lot of apps. Are you saying that unlike apple or google, basically there is no testing\policing of apps in our app store?
    01-06-2014 11:08 AM
  21. greedypnguin's Avatar
    Please excuse my ignorance, i don't use a lot of apps. Are you saying that unlike apple or google, basically there is no testing\policing of apps in our app store?
    Less than apple, more than android
    etad putta likes this.
    01-06-2014 11:10 AM
  22. hopmedic's Avatar
    Please excuse my ignorance, i don't use a lot of apps. Are you saying that unlike apple or google, basically there is no testing\policing of apps in our app store?
    Google only tests apps that are reported with problems. Microsoft and Apple test every app. To what extent, I don't know, but I have had apps rejected from the Windows Phone Store for simple little oversights on my part.
    01-06-2014 03:22 PM
  23. MyNL822's Avatar
    Many things in the appstore need to be fixed:
    • Fake Reviews in the appstore
    • misleading/fake apps
    • Too many unnecessary 3rd party apps

    The fake reviews and misleading/fake apps need to be fixed soon, I hope the WP store becomes more like windows 8 store for rating reviews and hopefully easier reporting of apps.
    01-06-2014 07:03 PM
  24. ShreyansShah's Avatar
    Please excuse my ignorance, i don't use a lot of apps. Are you saying that unlike apple or google, basically there is no testing\policing of apps in our app store?
    do u mean to say Android has a testing or policing of apps?
    i dont believe it. otherwise how can android app store rise by 3 lac apps in 8-9 months.
    they do not test apps at all. and in the android store, u can see numerous apps with same name, icons and many similarity. developers just change a line of code in existing app, and upload it with their own name to get the credit of an published app.
    01-06-2014 08:25 PM
  25. hopmedic's Avatar
    Many things in the appstore need to be fixed:
    • Fake Reviews in the appstore
    • misleading/fake apps
    • Too many unnecessary 3rd party apps

    The fake reviews and misleading/fake apps need to be fixed soon, I hope the WP store becomes more like windows 8 store for rating reviews and hopefully easier reporting of apps.
    First, the snarky side of me has to ask, "Is Google without all of these problems??"

    Sorry - just had to get that out of my system.

    Second, now that you mention it, I believe I've heard in a podcast somewhere, whether it was maybe Windows Weekly, or perhaps Windows Developer Show, I don't recall, but I'm thinking I heard that there was a ratings system in the works for raters. I could be wrong, but somehow I think I've heard it.
    01-06-2014 08:58 PM
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