Friday, September 22, 2023

Not so fast, Elon Musk: removing the block function on Twitter violates the rules of the App Store and Google Play

Elon Musk, in his usual daily action to get the world’s attention, created an uproar after reporting that plans to remove the option to block on Twitter. What the tycoon may not know, however, is that taking this action will bring him problems with Apple and Google, neither more nor less…

Because? If Elon Musk removes the block feature on Twitter, would be violating the terms from the App Store and Google Play. Both app stores specify that when it comes to social platforms, they are required to offer an option to block “abusive users.” Apple’s platform mentions the following:

“Apps with user-generated content present particular challenges, ranging from intellectual property infringement to anonymous harassment. To prevent abuse, apps with user-generated content, or social networking services, should include the ability to block abusive users of the service.”


Google, for its part, follows a very similar line. Therefore, the Twitter app on Android could not remove the option to block accounts either.

“Apps that feature user-generated content should implement strong, effective, and continuous moderation. An in-app system to block content and users should be offered.”


At a time when so many people take advantage of the anonymity provided by the Internet, it is crucial that social networks have these types of characteristics. In a way, the block function on Twitter It is a filter of the content we consume. No one should be tolerating users whose only goal is to annoy and hurt others.

Of course, one must understand Elon Musk lives in his own bubble. From that place, he believes that he can do and undo anything. We do not know if the tycoon is unaware of these policies and is taking blind steps or if, on the contrary, he knows them perfectly and his intention is to confront Apple and Google once again.

Another lawsuit with Apple, now for the block function on Twitter?

It wouldn’t be the first time he did it. During May of this same year, Elon Musk charged Apple for the 30% commission from the App Store. At the time, Twitter was rolling out its revamped subscription service, Twitter Blue. Of course, both Apple and Google pocket that percentage of each recurring payment, a practice that, to date, has not pleased Musk.

“The Apple Store is like having a 30% tax on the internet. It’s definitely not right. It’s literally 10 times higher than it should be,” Elon Musk said. In the end, his tantrum was useless. A few days later, he met directly with Tim Cook, Apple’s CEO, and they resolved the misunderstanding. Of course, those of Cupertino made it clear that, when it comes to rules, no one will get preferential treatment for breaking them.

Twitter went ahead with the deployment of its new service, although charging more to those who subscribe from its mobile application.

In the case of account blocking, Elon Musk will have to stay aligned to the rules of the App Store and Google Play. Otherwise, neither of the two companies will shake their pulse to load Twitter from their store. that they ask Fortnite and Epic Games…

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