mentuat

App store stolen games repeat offenders

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For fun, I spent a few hours on the iOS App Store thinking I might find one or two of my games stolen.

 

In the end I found 86 instances.  Some with the title changed, some with a different icon and the occasional one completely translated - but essentially the entire game ripped wholesale.

 

Most are free to download and filled with ads - others are charging for the app.  In a lot of cases, there are comments from users disappointed with the amount of ads or poor performance of the games.

 

I've gathered a list of the most common offenders, you might be inclined to check if any of your games have been stolen too.  

 

If so, Apple have a very simple form to fill in here: https://www.apple.com/legal/internet-services/itunes/appstorenotices/#/contacts

 

Here is that list:

https://itunes.apple.com/gb/artist/rui-wang/id898185915

https://itunes.apple.com/gb/artist/kinsuk-trivedi/id949832167

https://itunes.apple.com/gb/artist/smartphone-apps-basket/id415916362

https://itunes.apple.com/gb/artist/dipak-umarvansi/id904694128

https://itunes.apple.com/gb/artist/shaohong-guo/id787771233

https://itunes.apple.com/gb/artist/imtiyaz-dodhiya/id970011898

https://itunes.apple.com/gb/artist/dhaval-panchal/id384329353

https://itunes.apple.com/gb/artist/dhaval-m-panchal/id414450321

https://itunes.apple.com/gb/artist/mohit-bhalodiya/id932022317

https://itunes.apple.com/gb/artist/bhavik-shah/id494581215

https://itunes.apple.com/gb/artist/krunal-patel/id965616713

 

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Did you receive any feedback from 'iTunes Content Dispute' representative?

 

You receive an acknowledgement receipt from Apple, then a bit later you are copied in on the email that gets sent to the offender which starts like this: 

 

On 4/13/2015, we received a notice from Happylander Ltd. ("Complainant") that Complainant believes the app listed below infringes its intellectual property rights.  In particular, Complainant believes you are infringing its copyright.

 

The offender is then expected to contact you directly to try and resolve the issue and/or remove the app.

 

So far this morning I've had two responses from offenders claiming ignorance of any copyright issues and agreeing to immediately remove the games.

 

I don't expect this issue will ever go away but I plan to be more proactive about hunting them down and getting them removed because it pisses me off no end

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Thanks for the list, happy to hear they will remove the games(in less then a day you should see the app down if not they are just bullshitting on you), still seem kinda hard to believe they didn't notice any copyright...

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I still haven't heared from the offender and I also dropped email to Apple regarding it (CC to that guy), no response from Apple too.

 

What should I do?

This thread might give you an idea of the process and timescales when dealing with an issue like this http://iphonedevsdk.com/forum/business-legal-app-store/120101-itunes-content-dispute-how-long.html

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This thread should be stickied and new thieves added regularly. There are many scenarios where it won't be possible to find out if you've been ripped off simply by searching some title or looking at thumbnails in the AppStore. Knowing who usually steals games will be a good point to search for your game. Also, having some devs being complained about frequently might hopefully make Apple ban them completely.

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On of my games has been removed by apple after about 18 months. The ripper claimed it was his copyright and lied a lot and Apple did not react although I've proven copyright and trademarks. I find Apple be very slow with his kind of complaints. Google is much faster. You can expect an app to be removed within 48 hours, without giving the ripper the chance to lie.

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Apple have removed 46 of my stolen games so far

Mentuat, nice result! We contacted Apple Legal Service, they had asked developers to delete infringed content, and some accounts did that almost immediately and sent emails to us.

One thing I should mention here is that after deleting infringed content they started to wrap new games,  :blink: so be aware of that.

 

Those of noticed by us:

https://itunes.apple.com/gb/artist/dipak-umarvansi/id904694128

https://itunes.apple.com/us/artist/namrata-bosamia/id914227674

https://itunes.apple.com/gb/artist/imtiyaz-dodhiya/id970011898

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You would think they would at least get banned or something after repeat counts of ripping off peoples stuff! I just used the link posted above to flag up a few of my games that had been stolen, thanks guys.

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