With the rise and fall of Flappy Bird, there became a huge demand for games similar to the now-deceased title. It was an incredibly simple helicopter clone, but now that it’s been yanked from the Play Store, other developers are making clones to capitalize on that ad revenue. The developer of the original Flappy Bird reportedly made $50,000 a day from the game, so we can see why others would want a cut of it.
However, clones can often be poorly made, spammy and even malicious. Downloading these clones is dangerous, especially after such the huge boom in popularity that Flappy Bird enjoyed. As a result, Google has taken matters into its own hands and has started banning titles from the Play Store with the word “Flappy” in the title in an effort to prevent spam and an onslaught of clones. Current titles will be left alone, and only newly-submitted apps will be affected.
Is this the right way for Google to handle the situation? The Play Store has always been a safe haven for spam and crap as long as it isn’t malicious. Many people ran from Apple’s walled gardens to take refuge in the freedom of the Play Store. If Google has decided to block apps based solely on their titles, is it all that different from the walled garden that many of us escaped from?
Don’t get me wrong, I’m thankful Google is filtering out this garbage. The last thing I want is a flood of crappy Flappy Bird clones spamming the Play Store. I think the store has enough spam as it is. But is such a direct and merciless method of app management the proper thing to do? I’m not so sure, but I would love to hear your opinions. Leave a comment telling us what you think!