This story was originally published and last updated .
The popular open-source Reddit client Slide for Reddit is now back on the Play Store after being mistakenly pulled by Google on July 9th. The company initially claimed that the app violated the Play Store’s “impersonation” policy. However, upon further review, the app was found to be compliant with Play Store policies, and the app’s listing was reinstated today.
This isn’t the first time Slide for Reddit has run into issues on the Play Store. Although the app never actually did anything wrong, Google’s (almost total lack of) developer support is well documented. Last time, the ban apparently came down to the word “ISIS” in a single screenshot, in the context of a news item posted to Reddit. The slightest bit of oversight on Google’s app-kicking process would probably have caught how inconsequential the objection was, but smaller developers sadly can’t depend on the company to pay any attention, and most Play Store actions like these seem to be either automated or performed with minimal and seemingly incompetent oversight.
This time, the app was accused (somewhat nebulously) of violating the Play Store’s intellectual property policy, with Google informing the developer that the app was pulled for “impersonation” — in all likelihood, this was probably something as pointless as the word “Reddit” in a Reddit client. However, the developer noted that the app’s name and Play Store description have been the same for four years. The developer also confirmed the removal in a post to the app’s announcement and support subreddit.
“Google bots have struck again” — truer words were never spoken.
Earlier today, Carlos Crane of Haptic Apps (the developer behind Slide for Reddit) let us know that the app had been reinstated on the Play Store, and that “after further review, we have found your app to be compliant.” We’re told that a more detailed explanation of the original accusation was not forthcoming. Based on the limited details provided to him by Google, it sounds like our earlier suspicions of automation or incompetence were correct, and Google made a mistake in pulling the app.
It’s unfortunate that Google’s mistake resulted in the app being pulled, and sadly not every app this happens to is high-profile enough to catch our attention here at Android Police. For developers who depend on the Play Store for income, it’s too bad Google can’t get its act together when it comes to properly supporting them. But, at least there are always other platforms developers can diversify into, and they’ll probably make more money, too. On that note, a version of Slide for Reddit has also been released on iOS.