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Play Store: Google’s algorithms blocked a harmless Android app because of an offensive format abbreviation




In the Google Play Store, unlike Apple and some other app stores, there is no constant editorial support for the apps and games that are discontinued, but rather a random check by algorithms. Now a new case shows that Google’s algorithms are not infallible and can block apps for strange reasons. You have to give Google credit for having corrected the mistake very quickly.


Google lets algorithms perform many tasks, but they are not infallible and can sometimes be wrong – which can often lead to greater problems for those affected. This time it hits the Just (Video) Player in the Google Play Store. An app with a small user base but solid ratings and one simple feature – it plays videos. The video player also supports the integration of subtitles in various formats: SRT, SSA, ASS, TTML, VTT . And that’s the mistake.

automatically blocked the app

The algorithms interfere with the ASS file format and for this reason have automatically blocked the app. The algorithms presumably suspected the slightly derogatory meaning of the body part – even though some Google apps and APIs support this format. It is questionable why the algorithms immediately block this harmless word, which is certainly part of the everyday vocabulary of many people. Even if the developer meant the body part, locking it out without warning is a bit of an exaggeration.

Fortunately, the Play Store support team saw it that way and activated the app again after a few hours after the developer contacted us. Similar cases happen again and again and also occur on other platforms – unfortunately for some time now, to the chagrin of the GoogleWatchBlog . We may be distributing pornographic content similar to “Ass” 😉 here on the blog

Hassan Bilal is Founder of Techno Hawks an experienced Digital Marketer and SEO Consultant with 10 years of experience, specialized in the integration of SEO, Paid Search, SMM, Affiliate marketing, Content and Analytics for the development of complete and measurable marketing strategies. He worked with brands from around the country including government, non-profit, and small businesses. Over the years he had the opportunity to contribute to the online visibility of several top brands in very com

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