Android Developers Unionize to Put Pressure on Google


A group of cheesed off Android developers has decided to form a union against Google.

The Android Developers Union, has been set up in a bid to protest against Google’s Android Market policies, which the current members believe are completely unfair.

Although the group is fairly new, the group is already making some noise. In a blog post on the new site, one member wrote: “This is the Android Developers Union blog! This blog will host stories by developers and customers who have been screwed by the Android Market, updates about our campaigns to improve the Market conditions, and comments on the response from Google!”

They have already begun putting in demands to Google asking that seven things within its policies be changed. One of these is a renegotiation of the 32 percent Google cut on applications sold through the store. They also want more payment options and public bug tracking. They claim that if these are not met they will move to other platforms and use their powers to try and get others to turn their backs on the operating system.

Others have already begun taking to the blog to tell people of their woes. One developer who goes by the name of Rich wrote: “I have written more than 18 Android apps, including Port Scandroid and aBTC, the Android BitTorrent client, and the official ‘This American Life’ application. I make my living off of making Android applications.

“I released an app called Rapid Download! which would search and download from filehosting sites like RapidShare (a service which can be done less conveniently using Google’s own search engine). It cost 2.99, 3728 downloads and positive reviews.

“Without any warning or notification, the application was removed. I only noticed when I went to check my sales and noticed I had not made any money for the previous week and a half.”

He continued to say that when he contacted Google, through a web form, which didn’t work the first few times, all he got back was an automated reply with no useful information.

He claims that he tried the form again, and received another automated reply. The third time he tried, he actually received a reply, but it proved fruitless as there was no specific information.

And it seems Google also got on its high horse with Rich claiming that the company “threatened” him. It reportedly told him that if he “violated the rules again, [his] account would be deactivated and all of [his] applications would be removed from the Market.

“This would mean that I wouldn’t have any source of income and wouldn’t be able to make my rent payments,”he continued.

“This kind of treatment is unacceptable. Since I began developing Android applications two years ago, Google has collected over $14,000 in “service fees” as part of their 30 percent tax on all sales – and the only service they have ever provided me is a threatening letter,” he wrote.

We’re sure Rich isn’t the only developer who will be voicing his concerns on the blog. It’s going to make some interesting reading.

via: techeye



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