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FYI: Kidoz app suspended and removed. Kidoz has suspended ad serving until they can resolve the issue.
Started by agramonte Jun 08 2018 05:44 AM

93 replies to this topic
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#1

agramonte

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has been suspended and removed from Google Play because it violates our Device and Network Abuse policy and section 4.9 of the Developer Distribution Agreement.

 

Above is part of the e-mail that I got for my app. My build settings only had Game Analytics (marked as coppa app) and Kidoz.

 

Below is the notification I got from Kidoz.

 

 

Dear Developer,

 

We write you due to multiple notifications received by our publishers coming from GooglePlay regarding Device and Network Abuse policy and section 4.9 of the Developer Distribution Agreement.

 

While some of the developers got this notification regardless of KIDOZ SDK, we decided to pause our service and not serve ads until we fully understand what is the issue and which steps need to be taken.

 

We’ve asked GooglePlay for further clarifications and we are working with our team on investigating this issue as we are not aware of violations and we did not receive any warnings. We also advice you to reach out to Google and ask for a better explanation on this issue.

 

We will keep you updated on our progress and share any available feedback.


Thanks for your cooperation,
-- 
The KIDO'Z Team

 

Update:

 

 

Dear Developer,

Following up on our previous notice, we just conducted a deep discussion with the Google Play - Designed for family team and got better understanding of the issue, and their sincere commitment to help.

The suspension came as a result of calls to the YouTube API that are not compliant for apps targeting kids any more. As we talked with several developers who got suspended without using kidoz, please conduct all the necessary steps to ensure your app is not calling or presenting any links to YouTube, and there are no references in the code for YouTube, even if they are not active.

While Kidoz already removed the use of YouTube API, our team will conduct additional tests today to reinsure.

Jenna, our business development contact at Google designed for family, promised to help all affected developers and expedite the process as much as possible, once there is 100% certainty YouTube API is not in use. 
Jenna is not part of the policy team and cannot elaborate on the technical matters or to certify apps, but she could be approached in the case of latency or no response. 
We can share her contact details per request.

We advise to start the appeal process from the link provided on the warning only once you verified your apps are clean from YouTube calls, and you got a confirmation from us as well, after our internal checks concluded hopefully by tomorrow.

Based on what we learn from the DFP team, they completely understand the frustration and are willing to expedite the re-approval process once all is cleared. Please mind that until the issue is cleared, Kidoz will not show any advertising.

We will send additional updates today & tomorrow, and hope this will be resolved with Google's help in the next few days.

-- 
The KIDO'Z Team

Edited by agramonte, 09 June 2018 - 06:37 AM.


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#2

Rob Miracle

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I've alerted our engineers about this. Hopefully Kidoz will have a solution soon.

 

Rob



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#3

sensoryplayapps

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Hello,

 

I'm having similar issues with my app - is there any more information on this topic? It seems multiple developers have been affected by this and google have yet to provide more information to myself as to the exact reason

 

How likely do you think it will be that our apps will be reinstated also?

 

Thanks,

Daryl



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#4

KlimBo

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The same disgusting situation with me... six of my apps have been suspended and my developer account terminated. A lot of apps and games lost. Several years of work lost... I am really mad and frustrated.



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#5

Rob Miracle

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Are any of you showing YouTube videos?



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#6

agramonte

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I think Kidoz is at times. I am not showing any videos other than what Kidoz shows. It was just an app for me and I don't think I have any way of returning it to the store. I think that app is lost.



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#7

Rob Miracle

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There was a stack overflow post from a couple of months ago where the cause of this was trying to show banner ads or other ads while showing YouTube videos which isn't allowed.

 

This seems to be impacting more than Kidoz and Corona developers. Hopefully Google will provide more information about what's happening.

 

Rob



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#8

blomjens1

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my account was alos terminated to today , also having Kidoz  ads
i real hope they fix this **** 

hade 30+ apps sins 2013 



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#9

agramonte

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The saddest thing is I really don't know how to recover from this. Do I create a new Google account and change the name of the app without KIdoz? In the e-mail, it says I can upload a new app that corrects the problem, but there is no button that is still enabled to do so.



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#10

sensoryplayapps

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I've just received news back from google - it's the god dam youtube api! I'm not even using it in my app! but it's found its way into my package from another plugin of which I never use this aspect of the plugin!

 

I hope this is helpful to others!

 

But, I still have the problem that I can't update the existing app! Very frustrating - I'm hoping I receive word soon that they'll re-enable the functionality on the dashboard.

 

I'll keep this thread updated if I hear anything more



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#11

Rob Miracle

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@sensoryplayapps, it's good that you've heard back from Google and people can adapt to the cause. 

 

On a different note, I know you're new here and you may not have reviewed our forum rules, but profanity is not allowed (Rule #7,  I know this is a frustrating issue with Google, but we would appreciate it if you can avoid bad language in the future.

 

Thanks

Rob



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#12

DanT

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Hi, new to the forum. Actually came across this post and signed up to thank you for updating the community on developments on this.
We have also fallen victim to this Google / Kidoz policy issue and haven’t heard back from our appeal. Talk about taken by surprise! 12M downloads, 4.3 with 55K reviews, and right before an important summer release.

Poof...gone.

Any news you guys have will be greatly appreciated. We’ll do the same if we get any news.

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#13

mzed

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We are facing the same issue here. Our 11 apps are now suspended and account is terminated. Same email received from Kidoz.

 

Wondering if Google will reinstate the account anytime soon.

 

Regards



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#14

ipkapustin

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I also received 3 strikes on three children's apps with KIDOZ ads yesterday and my developer account was destroyed! No explanation yet! I filed an appeal, but maybe someone knows where else you can go to Google Play?



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#15

agramonte

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Added an update to the post.



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#16

KlimBo

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The last email from Kidoz. I really don't know how to understand it. I start to think they are trying to run away from responsibility:

Dear Developer,

Following up on our previous notice, we just conducted a deep discussion with the Google Play - Designed for family team and got better understanding of the issue, and their sincere commitment to help.

The suspension came as a result of calls to the YouTube API that are not compliant for apps targeting kids any more. As we talked with several developers who got suspended without using kidoz, please conduct all the necessary steps to ensure your app is not calling or presenting any links to YouTube, and there are no references in the code for YouTube, even if they are not active.

While Kidoz already removed the use of YouTube API, our team will conduct additional tests today to reinsure.

Jenna, our business development contact at Google designed for family, promised to help all affected developers and expedite the process as much as possible, once there is 100% certainty YouTube API is not in use.
Jenna is not part of the policy team and cannot elaborate on the technical matters or to certify apps, but she could be approached in the case of latency or no response.
We can share her contact details per request.

We advise to start the appeal process from the link provided on the warning only once you verified your apps are clean from YouTube calls, and you got a confirmation from us as well, after our internal checks concluded hopefully by tomorrow.

Based on what we learn from the DFP team, they completely understand the frustration and are willing to expedite the re-approval process once all is cleared. Please mind that until the issue is cleared, Kidoz will not show any advertising.

We will send additional updates today & tomorrow, and hope this will be resolved with Google's help in the next few days.


--
The KIDO'Z Team

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#17

agramonte

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@klimbo they clearly show youtube videos. I always thought it was strange, but I didn't think it was going to end up in suspension. I only have 2 kids games. The other one has not been killed yet. I downloaded it yesterday and kidoz is not showing any ads at the moment.



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#18

KlimBo

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It's absolutely unacceptable for a company with several employees and finances not to be informed about the latest updates of ToS and Privacy Policies of the 3rd party products they are using in their product. I am an indie developer and I know latest ToS of 3rd party services which I use in my apps. The behavior of Kidoz is unprofessional and ridiculous.

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#19

blomjens1

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This is 100% related to Kidoz and they should take there responsibility and try to restore our apps/accounts.
the fact that they mail all there users and paused all the ads proves that they know they are responsible for this disaster
this is so sad 
  



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#20

gauravmba511

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Same here, my friend account got terminated in 1 hr.we had 15 apps. did'nt even got the chance to correct it. Got the mail from Kidoz.



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#21

KlimBo

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The latest email from Kidoz:

Dear Developer,



After additional tests and communication with Google, we were told that each developer who received a warning or was suspended is advised to appeal on behalf of their apps (if you haven't done so already) via the appeal link in Google's suspension email (or use this link).

In your appeal (one for all affected apps is enough), you can mention the steps you took to become compliant, and ask to reinstate your apps to allow resubmission.


If there were YouTube references in your own code, please mention the actions you took to remove them. We have learned that even a link to a simple tutorial on YouTube may cause issues, as YouTube was defined as a service not intended for children under 13.

As for the Kidoz SDK, although we were not aware of any non-compliance issues, we carefully went over the code to ensure that no use of YouTube API exists on the code.

As part of the resubmission process, we recommend updating to the latest SDK version (0.8.5.0 or higher) that will be available later today for Android Native, Unity and Adobe Air plugins.



Based on our understanding, the Google policy team is ready to go over the appeals and reinstate the apps once they are confirmed.



If the process suffers from delays, please reach out to us so we can introduce you to Jenna, our contact person who is responsible for helping in this matter from Google's DFP side.

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#22

agramonte

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It wasn't them, but they have a new SDK. I am done.



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#23

Rob Miracle

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@agramonte can you clarify what you mean by "it wasn't them" and "I am done"?



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#24

agramonte

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I am done with Kidoz. If I get my app re-instated somehow, I am going to use Appodeal or Superawesome. I have not heard back from Google.

 

As for the wasn't "them", I meant that at least from my reading of the e-mails they are not taking responsibility for this mess.


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#25

KlimBo

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I am done with Kidoz. If I get my app re-instated somehow, I am going to use Appodeal or Superawesome. I have not heard back from Google.

 

As for the wasn't "them", I meant that at least from my reading of the e-mails they are not taking responsibility for this mess.

 

You are right. They are trying to run away from responsibility with every single word in their emails full of lies. My apps were suspended and my account terminated because of their SDK. These apps use only their SDK.


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