Apple disabled my iTunes account the ability to review Apps

Charliebird

macrumors 6502a
Original poster
Mar 10, 2010
838
90
Without warning or notice Apple disabled my iTunes account from being able to place reviews of Apps. I emailed support and they said they can't tell me why and it will not be re-enabled. Not being able to leave reviews isn't a big deal to me. The way Apple it did is a big deal to me. I've been a big fan of Apple products and an heavy embedded in their eco-system. Now I'm questioning my choice since Apple is acting with such a heavy hand without explanation or recourse.
 

impaler

macrumors 6502
Feb 20, 2006
438
7
FL
Were you a jerk in your reviews, use profanity, were harsh or not constructive? That could do it.
 

Charliebird

macrumors 6502a
Original poster
Mar 10, 2010
838
90
Were you a jerk in your reviews, use profanity, were harsh or not constructive? That could do it.
No, nothing like that. I can only guess because Apple won't reveal any details. In fact it was hard to even get them to admit they restricted my account. My guess is that I participated in some drawings where if you gave an honest review of a particular App they would enter you in a drawing for an iTunes giftcard. My reviews where always honest some good some bad. My guess is that Apple had a problem with it. If Apple just would informed me this was an issue I would have been fine with it. Instead they restricted my account without telling me. I guess it's time for me to move on.
 

Rigby

macrumors 601
Aug 5, 2008
4,741
3,689
San Jose, CA
No, nothing like that. I can only guess because Apple won't reveal any details. In fact it was hard to even get them to admit they restricted my account. My guess is that I participated in some drawings where if you gave an honest review of a particular App they would enter you in a drawing for an iTunes giftcard.
You mean you received gift cards from app developers for reviewing their apps? That sounds like a perfectly good reason to block your ability to write reviews (even if your reviews were perfectly honest).
 

rocknblogger

macrumors 68020
Apr 2, 2011
2,318
408
New Jersey
You mean you received gift cards from app developers for reviewing their apps? That sounds like a perfectly good reason to block your ability to write reviews (even if your reviews were perfectly honest).
Not taking sides here but wouldn't you think it's the developer that should get punished? What if you left a review for the same app not even knowing there was a drawing for a gift card?

I have no idea how that whole thing works. Never even heard of it. But it seems to me that the developer should pay the consequences.
 

Rigby

macrumors 601
Aug 5, 2008
4,741
3,689
San Jose, CA
Not taking sides here but wouldn't you think it's the developer that should get punished?
This seems less like "punishment" than protecting the app store from fake reviews. And Apple can block reviews for any reason if they want to. It's not a god-given right to be allowed to post reviews in their store, after all. ;)
What if you left a review for the same app not even knowing there was a drawing for a gift card?
Of course Apple should only take this step if they know that a user was paid for reviews.

It seems they have been cracking down on such practices for a while now:

http://techcrunch.com/2014/06/13/apple-is-taking-action-against-fake-ratings-on-the-app-store/
 

Charliebird

macrumors 6502a
Original poster
Mar 10, 2010
838
90
You mean you received gift cards from app developers for reviewing their apps? That sounds like a perfectly good reason to block your ability to write reviews (even if your reviews were perfectly honest).
Well I guess I expected that not everyone would share my sense of outrage. # I don't really see the harm of providing honest reviews of small independent apps for the chance to win a $10 dollar gift card. It wasn't an app review sweatshop run like a Foxconn factory. You would think Apple would have bigger worries like tighting up it's suppliers labor treatment or updating Apple TV or releasing a G5 MacBook pro. It's not like Apple's own App promotion isn't a little bit questionable. As an example they selected the piece of garbage Godus as one of the best Apps for 2014.
 

colodane

macrumors 6502a
Nov 11, 2012
789
254
Colorado
I don't think the OP really did anything wrong.

However, the entire recent trend of soliciting positive reviews (even if it is subtle) has gotten quite annoying to me.

Even all those "like us on Facebook and receive …." requests are a complete turnoff to me. I now have a policy of never "liking" any company on Facebook, even if is a company I really admire and do lots of business with. Their performance and policies can change over time. My "like" is permanent.
 

maflynn

Moderator
Staff member
May 3, 2009
63,860
30,384
Boston
I don't really see the harm of providing honest reviews of small independent apps for the chance to win a $10 dollar gift card.
So it sounds like you did this consistently and it wasn't a one time thing.

Getting paid for reviews (or getting a chance to win a contest) typically means that the reviews are not honest and the integrity of the reviewing system is called into question. I'm not saying you didn't give honest review but rather, the question arises at how valid those reviews are if someone benefited from them. It's human nature to give a good review if they thought that would increase their odds in winning the drawing. Its like publisher's clearing house sweepstakes. They keep saying that subscribing to the magazines they offer does not increase your odds of winning yet, so many people still do that, just in case.
 

Jessica Lares

macrumors G3
Oct 31, 2009
9,200
722
Near Dallas, Texas, USA
Well I guess I expected that not everyone would share my sense of outrage. �� I don't really see the harm of providing honest reviews of small independent apps for the chance to win a $10 dollar gift card. It wasn't an app review sweatshop run like a Foxconn factory. You would think Apple would have bigger worries like tighting up it's suppliers labor treatment or updating Apple TV or releasing a G5 MacBook pro. It's not like Apple's own App promotion isn't a little bit questionable. As an example they selected the piece of garbage Godus as one of the best Apps for 2014.
There's a huge difference between a game that can thrive from advertising and word of mouth vs the one that people had to be paid to pick up and play.

You probably would have given Godus five stars and a glowing review had the developers offered you a $10 gift card. :rolleyes:
 

Brian Y

macrumors 68040
Oct 21, 2012
3,506
600
Being paid for reviews goes against the integrity of the system.

Im kinda glad you (and others who do this) are blocked from leaving reviews. It makes the system much fairer in my eyes.
 

Charliebird

macrumors 6502a
Original poster
Mar 10, 2010
838
90
I'm biggest issue is Apple's heavy handed approach. I've had my iTunes account for 10+ years. I own hundreds of dollars of application and media tied to it. Indefinitely crippling my iTunes account doesn't sit well with me. If it wasn't indefinite I wouldn't have a problem. I makes me think twice about owning a digital library that is locked down by DRM and tied to a single account.
 

swordfish5736

macrumors 68000
Jun 29, 2007
1,897
104
Cesspool
I'm biggest issue is Apple's heavy handed approach. I've had my iTunes account for 10+ years. I own hundreds of dollars of application and media tied to it. Indefinitely crippling my iTunes account doesn't sit well with me. If it wasn't indefinite I wouldn't have a problem. I makes me think twice about owning a digital library that is locked down by DRM and tied to a single account.
You said they disabled your ability to review apps. That has nothing to do with your purchases.


Is this you?
 

Attachments

Charliebird

macrumors 6502a
Original poster
Mar 10, 2010
838
90
Update

  1. Yesterday, I emailed Apple's executive customer support and politely told them on no uncertain terms would I buy another Apple device until my iTunes account was returned to full functionality.
  2. It was reported that last night Tim Cook slept soundly on a pile of money. Rumored not to have missed even one wink.*

At this time it's not clear if there's any relationship between these two events.


*Full disclaimer - Item 2 was completely fabricated by the author of this post.
 
Last edited:

swordfish5736

macrumors 68000
Jun 29, 2007
1,897
104
Cesspool
Update

  1. Yesterday, I emailed Apple's executive customer support and politely told them on no uncertain terms would I buy another Apple device until my iTunes account was returned to full functionality
  2. It was reported that last night Tim Cook slept soundly on a pile of money. Rumored not to have missed even one wink.*

At this time it's not clear if there's any relationship between these two events.


*Full disclaimer - Item 2 was completely fabricated by the author of this post.
But you can still buy apps, so your account works fine. They just won't let you write a review anymore because you violated the terms.
 

Charliebird

macrumors 6502a
Original poster
Mar 10, 2010
838
90
But you can still buy apps, so your account works fine. They just won't let you write a review anymore because you violated the terms.
Which terms? I can't find it but I'm sure it says somewhere in there that Apple can do anything they want and you have zero recourse.

http://www.apple.com/legal/internet-services/itunes/us/terms.html
 

bushido

Suspended
Mar 26, 2008
8,070
2,746
Germany
Being paid for reviews goes against the integrity of the system.

Im kinda glad you (and others who do this) are blocked from leaving reviews. It makes the system much fairer in my eyes.
i had to do that as a student job for a while. same with writing popular blog owners if they would review a product or post a link for money. i felt so bad but what i learnt is you cannot trust anything on the web. there might always be some seo agency behind it
 

chrfr

macrumors G3
Jul 11, 2009
8,202
2,530
Which terms? I can't find it but I'm sure it says somewhere in there that Apple can do anything they want and you have zero recourse.

http://www.apple.com/legal/internet-services/itunes/us/terms.html
From the section labeled "SUBMISSIONS TO THE APP AND BOOK SERVICES" (which includes end-user reviews).
"Apple reserves the right to not post or publish any materials, and to remove or edit any material, at any time in its sole discretion without notice or liability. You may not submit reviews or ratings for App Store Products downloaded using a promotional Content Code.
Apple has the right, but not the obligation, to monitor any materials submitted by you or otherwise available on the App and Book Services, to investigate any reported or apparent violation of this Agreement, and to take any action that Apple in its sole discretion deems appropriate, including, without limitation, termination hereunder or under Apple’s Copyright Policy (http://www.apple.com/legal/copyright.html)."
 

Charliebird

macrumors 6502a
Original poster
Mar 10, 2010
838
90
From the section labeled "SUBMISSIONS TO THE APP AND BOOK SERVICES"
Thanks for digging through the fine print. I have current i-devices right now so it's status quo. When it's time to upgrade I'll probably look elsewhere. I've had a pretty good run with Apple.