Wired Magazine is reporting that the company Molinker, best known for being essentially a copycat developer who at their peak had 1000 applications submitted and approved on the App Store have been recently been removed. It appears that this removal was mostly based on the developer gaming the review system by giving away free application codes in response for 5 star reviews. The most interesting thing of all is, is the one line in the article that discusses the fact that one of this company’s apps showed up in the “Staff Favorites” list which until now I honestly thought was chosen by people who worked at Apple. This opens up a can of worms in terms of how those selections are actually made, and should be investigated more.
On one hand I’m glad they decided to remove the offending company and their spamware, but on the other hand it brings out some glaring issues in the setup of the App Store. Since the launch of the App Store, there have been quite a few complaints about the approval process, the amount of spam apps that get on, and the general needle in a haystack feel that some developers are gripping with. I would love to see Apple find a way to help quality apps find their way out of the grime and for there to be a leveling playing field for everyone, but I sadly think that that day is a ways away.
On one hand I commend Apple for taking action on what essentially is a 1% cut of all their applications on the store, on the other hand, when there are 100,000 apps in the App Store, the store is going to get gamed and it shouldn’t be up to other developers to report on people. It should be interesting to see what kind of precedence this sets for future developers and people abusing the appstore system.