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Android Market Plagiarism
by Henry Truong on 10/27/11 09:40:00 pm

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The following blog post, unless otherwise noted, was written by a member of Gamasutra’s community.
The thoughts and opinions expressed are those of the writer and not Gamasutra or its parent company.

 

I recently discovered that someone had copied one of our Android games -- literally copied, to the extent that the menu screen still had our original game's name -- added spam, and posted it on the Android Market under a different name.  A quick trip to Google's DMCA form got the app pulled within a few hours.

Not following the Android Market very closely, I'm curious.  Is this a common thing?  Have I stumbled upon one of those problems that's too big to fight?

I decided to try to identify the other games plagiarized under the same developer account so that I could notify the original developers.  However, in my haste I took one comment along the lines of "this is just a copy of X" at face value, and ended up "notifying" another dev who turned out to be doing the exact same thing.  (The two accounts are possibly the same person, their approaches are nearly identical, right down to the "reviews" lifted from Canabalt's press, and the scores upon scores of automated fake ratings/user reviews.)

I was able to identify a number of original developers accurately and send them messages, but there were a few I couldn't place (by recognition or by TinEye).  Please let me know if you recognize any of these games.

[EDIT: To be clear, I'm not talking about clones or imitations, I'm talking about literal exact copies.  For example, compare the games "Sheepdog Master", "Dog Work" and "Doggy Style".]





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