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Site Suspended due to "Software Principles"

Visitor ✭ ✭ ✭
# 1
Visitor ✭ ✭ ✭

My site is http://www.heliumscraper.com/en/index.php?p=home, where I promote and sell a software called Helium Scraper.

 

Now I can't run my ads because Google has suspended my site due to Software Principles. I did the review thing a few days ago, after I received an email telling me my ads were not running due to AdWords Advertising Policies, and got a call from a Google representative who told me to add an EULA and instructions to uninstall the software (which is weird because you can easily uninstall it from Control Panel as most applications).

 

Anyway, I added these things and sent it back to review, and received another email from Google telling me:

 

Thank you for your email. I confirm that your website http://www.heliumscraper.com/en/index.php?p=home violates Google’s Software Principles policy, as http://www.heliumscraper.com/en/index.php?p=home appears to distribute harmful or disruptive software onto users’ machines. Google doesn’t allow websites or applications to distribute software or downloads that don’t comply with our Software Principles.

 

According to my AdWords account, my site violates the Software Principles I linked above. The download page is at: http://www.heliumscraper.com/en/index.php?p=download. As you can see, if you press Download Now, it'll show an EULA you must accept. Also, there are Installation / Uninstallation instructions at the bottom right (which, by the way, looks dumb as hell and is the only instance of uninstallation instructions I've ever seen in a download page). 

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Marked as Best Answer.
Solution
Accepted by ElizabethP (Community Manager)
September 2015

Re: Site Suspended due to "Software Principles"

[ Edited ]
Top Contributor
# 5
Top Contributor


a small checklist --

(1) verify the eula/tos is clearly visible -- either directly or as a link.

(2) verify install and uninstall instructions are clearly visible --
either directly or as a link; regardless of any integration with
any operating-system's package-handling, or how simple,
intuitive, easy, obvious, or well-known, the tasks may be.

(4) verify the eula/tos, and un/install instructions are easy to locate and
available both before and after any software is purchased or installed --

on the website.


(5) verify that the authorization-to-distribute form has been
submitted for any free or free-trial software -- even if the
software's authoritative-source and advertiser are identical.

(6) verify all download-flows match the expected behavior of the
software's intended-use, any unexpected behavior is prevented,
and all functionality is fully transparent.

(7) verify there is no malware or similar, within
the software, on the site, or linked from the site

or from within the software.

(8) verify the software and site do not violate any google policies.

see also
https://www.google.com/about/company/unwanted-software-policy.html
https://support.google.com/webmasters/topic/6002025

View solution in original post

Re: Site Suspended due to "Software Principles"

[ Edited ]
Follower ✭ ✭ ✭
# 2
Follower ✭ ✭ ✭

Hi there,

 

I recommend you checking out these links related to AdWords Software Policy :

 

http://www.google.com/about/company/unwanted-software-policy.html?hl=en

http://www.google.com/about/company/software-principles.html

 

I hope that it should help you understand about the violations and also the policy requirements to get it Approved. 

 

Thanks

Re: Site Suspended due to "Software Principles"

Visitor ✭ ✭ ✭
# 3
Visitor ✭ ✭ ✭
Hi,

Sorry, I've already read those but none answers my question.

Re: Site Suspended due to "Software Principles"

Visitor ✭ ✭ ✭
# 4
Visitor ✭ ✭ ✭

Based on this AdWords Community Post, and my own experiences, it seems the following is true:

I know, it makes no sense to me either.

I have registered and crossed my fingers.

Wish you the best.  Keep us updated.

Marked as Best Answer.
Solution
Accepted by ElizabethP (Community Manager)
September 2015

Re: Site Suspended due to "Software Principles"

[ Edited ]
Top Contributor
# 5
Top Contributor


a small checklist --

(1) verify the eula/tos is clearly visible -- either directly or as a link.

(2) verify install and uninstall instructions are clearly visible --
either directly or as a link; regardless of any integration with
any operating-system's package-handling, or how simple,
intuitive, easy, obvious, or well-known, the tasks may be.

(4) verify the eula/tos, and un/install instructions are easy to locate and
available both before and after any software is purchased or installed --

on the website.


(5) verify that the authorization-to-distribute form has been
submitted for any free or free-trial software -- even if the
software's authoritative-source and advertiser are identical.

(6) verify all download-flows match the expected behavior of the
software's intended-use, any unexpected behavior is prevented,
and all functionality is fully transparent.

(7) verify there is no malware or similar, within
the software, on the site, or linked from the site

or from within the software.

(8) verify the software and site do not violate any google policies.

see also
https://www.google.com/about/company/unwanted-software-policy.html
https://support.google.com/webmasters/topic/6002025

Re: Site Suspended due to "Software Principles"

Visitor ✭ ✭ ✭
# 6
Visitor ✭ ✭ ✭

The exact same thing happened to me. We've been selling U-Move, a high-level disaster-recovery and software migration utility for Microsoft Active Directory for almost 10 years, to the US government, including all branches of the US military, the US  Dept of Treasury, the White House Office of Administration, and a good\ chunk of the Fortune 500.  Between U-Promote and U-Move we've been doing this since1998.

 

Now suddenly out of nowhere my whole site gets suspended out of the blue.

 

Why? Because, I was told (eventually) that I didn't have 'instructions on how to uninstall the program.'  What? Really? For Microsoft Windows?  Yes, really.  It was because I didn't have a web page that said "Click on Control Panel -> Program and Features.  Then click on the program to uninstall it".  That's it. Simple, obvious, and exactly the same way you uninstall every other Windows program ever written since the beginning of time. 

 

That includes the download page for Google Chrome, Google Earth, and all the other apps ever written that run on Windows, none of which have similar uninstall instructions on their download pages.  I am sure that Google will be promptly suspending itself for its violation of its own 'Software Principles' AUP any day now for not having prominent uninstall directions on the download page, just like it just did to me.

 

I was told that I had to put the Windows uninstall instructions on the download web page itself.  So I did: The following instructions now appear prominently under the download link in boldface font: "Uninstall instructions: To remove the software, go to Control Panel -> Programs and Features. Click on U-Move and select Remove.")  That's it.

 

I can't believe I got suspended for this.  Between U-Move and U-Promote I've sold to goodly fraction of the Fortune 500, to most cabinet level departments of the US Federal Government, to the White House, to Bayer, Amoco, Dell, GE, Intel, IBM, PacBell, Walt Disney, Wells Fargo... See https://u-tools.com/UPromote_users.asp and https://u-tools.com/UMove_users.asp.  Good grief I've sold to Bill Gates himself. (Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation).  This is crazy.

 

I didn't even realize I got suspended because our organic search rankings were so high that I had just assumed our ads didn't appear on those pages. It wasn't until our AdWords bill dropped to zero that I spotted the site suspension.  We follow the 'Software Principles' guidelines to the letter: Manual installation only, no ads, simple removal, clear behavior, no snooping, no malware, no bundling (I wrote the software myself and own the company), with full legal EULA, and now with clear and prominent uninstallation instructions on the download page. 

 

I sent in the requisite rebuttal form and asked for a phone call. The next day I got a call from a woman with a foreign accent who was obviously reading from a script.  I explained that I had already put up the uninstall instructions (having spotted this thread earlier).  She ignored everything I said and just read her script like a robot.  She sent me the wrong 'reply' form (we are a commercial site not a freeware site). I begged her to please send the correct form for a commercial site but she ignored me and just kept reading her script.  I begged her to please send me the correct form and then.. she hung up on me. Then I got this autobot that said 'Press 2 if you were dissatisfied with you sesssion.'  I pressed 2 repeatedly. The bot then said  'we are sorry but we were unable to hear your response' and hung up on me. The caller ID was an invalid number and there was no way for me to call back.

 

I felt like I'm a character living in the movie Brazil

 

Anyway, Like I said I already added the uninstall instructions, so I simply submitted the reply form (wrong one I think), and we'll just sit back and see what happens.  I'm guessing I'll get suspended again for offering 'payware' on  'freeware' site because of the wrong form.