Microsoft issuing new guidelines for Marketplace, looking to clean up app selection

Posted on May 1 2012 - 11:50am by Mike Wewerka

Microsoft’s Todd Brix took to the company’s Windows Phone blog to announce their plans to “clean up” the Windows Phone Marketplace using four methods. This methods are; Avoiding trademark trouble, Keeping the quality bar high, Cleaning up keywords and finally, Refining our approach to content policy enforcement.

The first step is pretty obvious, Microsoft is going to have apps that use trademarked name from another company, removed, that applies to app titles and company names.

For example, using “Microsoft App Co.” as your publisher name would cause problems because “Microsoft” is a trademarked term. By the same logic, you couldn’t call your app “MSN” or “YouTube”. However, you may be able to make an app called “Reader for MSN,” as long as you don’t use the MSN logo or otherwise suggest that the app is published by Microsoft.

This will potentially eliminate apps that confuse customers who are lead to believe that they are downloading an official app.

Another big problem Microsoft has noticed, is that some developers are publishing the same apps in multiple categories, which is a clear violation of the Marketplace guidelines. Developers will now only be allowed to select “one” category that best describes their app, this will remove clutter (i.e. duplicates) and easily allow people to find otherwise hidden apps.

Until now, some developers have been violating the Windows Marketplace “five” keyword limit, starting today, Microsoft will be cracking down and strictly enforcing its five keyword policy. If you’re a developer who is found in violation of this policy, Microsoft will be reaching out to you, to remedy the issue.

Finally, since day one, Microsoft’s policy has been no pornographic material, but some apps have managed to slip through the cracks. While they believe that some content should be allowed, like swimsuits and such, basically the same content you’d find on prime-time television, nudity or sexual situations however, will not be tolerated.

We think the right solution is (a) to be transparent about what’s acceptable and (b) to show the right merchandise to the right customer in the right place. Our content policies are clearly spelled out: we don’t allow apps containing “sexually suggestive or provocative” images or content. What we do permit is the kind of content you occasionally see on prime-time TV or the pages of a magazine’s swimsuit issue.

Overall, these new rules are nothing dramatic, in fact, some of them have already been in place, Microsoft is just finally stepping up to enforce them. For the end user, they should be able to discover new apps, without being buried by porn, duplicated and/or falsely named/branded apps.

Head on over to the Windows Phone Blog for all the details.

Originally Posted via our sister site: WP Life