PaulsCode Forum

Mupen64Plus AE => General Discussion => Topic started by: Paul on October 09, 2012, 11:05:47 PM

Title: Google Play Account FIXED!!
Post by: Paul on October 09, 2012, 11:05:47 PM
I finally got through to Google, and my developer account has been fixed!  They even sent me an automated email that I can re-publish Mupen64Plus AE.

Thanks to everyone for helping to make a big deal about the bogus DMCA situation.  While we may never know what all went into Google's decision, I am pretty sure my complaints would have gone unnoticed without the support of a great community.
Title: Re: Google Play Account FIXED!!
Post by: Paul on October 09, 2012, 11:41:12 PM
I'm not sure whether to re-publish the original app that was taken down first, or re-publish the second one with the renamed package-name that was taken down second.  There are advantages and disadvantages with either option.

The advantage of re-publishing the original app, is that it has the higher installs count and a longer history (and it would be a nice slap-in-the-face to Brad who started this whole thing by taking that one down).  Also, fewer users would have to re-purchase the app, since there are already over 50,000 installs if I remember right, compared to like 5,000 installs with the second one.  The disadvantage of re-publishing the original, is that I've already changed the github repository to reflect the new package name.  I would need to push an update to change it back, which would affect the other devs currently working on the code.

The advantage of re-publishing the second app, is that it has a higher rating (since the first version published for this one was more developed).  Also, it has the same package name as whats in the github repository.  The disadvantage is that it has a lower installs count and not as rich a history, since it wasn't up for very long before it got DMCA'd.

What does everyone think?  I'm leaning toward putting the original one back up, I think.

Also, what are everyone's thoughts on the free version?  Should I keep Trev's app up on Google Play, or remove it and re-publish the original free app?  I think Trev's app has a higher installs count.  But then it is free, so wouldn't be a huge deal for folks to switch to the other app.  The advantage of removing Trev's app and re-publishing the original free app, would be if my account winds up banned again from more bogus DMCA's (not sure if Google has actually fixed the underlying problem yet), then I could simply re-publish on Trev's account again.

What do you guys think?
Title: Re: Google Play Account FIXED!!
Post by: Paul on October 10, 2012, 12:10:17 AM
While my Google Play account is back up and running, my Google Checkout Merchant account still has problems (I won't be able to receive payments until I figure out how to fix it).  There is a page to apply for account reinstatement (http://support.google.com/checkout/sell/bin/request.py?contact_type=appeal), but I have no idea how to get some of the items they are asking for.

First of all, I am not a business, so obviously I don't have a business license.

Secondly, how am I supposed to supply receipts or order tracking numbers if I can't access the account (kind of a chicken-or-the-egg deal, isn't it?)

There is the following section in there:
Quote
If you are unable to submit any of the above documents, please provide further explanation in the "Additional information" field below, and make sure to provide specific reasoning for each omitted document.  If we do not receive all the requested documentation, and you do not provide an additional explanation, your account will not be eligible for reinstatement.

So I could apply for checkout merchant account reinstatement without all the required documents, with an explanation that I CAN'T provide all the required documents because I can't access the account.  But then if I don't hear back from Google, then I'll have no idea if they are still working on the issue, or if they denied the request.

Oh, well, at this point I'm just happy to have my developer account and apps back.  I'll think about the merchant account issue some more before I do anything.  Maybe I can find some other folks who have gone through this process before who have some advice.
Title: Re: Google Play Account FIXED!!
Post by: trev186 on October 10, 2012, 12:40:40 AM
I am Glasgow hear things are.moving along !

We should strategize a way of getting Mupen 64 Ae back in your hands and out from under my name.

Maybe a new branch with some updates (I know u were planning a ks eventually)

I can always update the app desc for the current version to say that any new version u come out with is what the users should download and that the old version will no longer be updated
Title: Re: Google Play Account FIXED!!
Post by: trev186 on October 10, 2012, 12:42:13 AM
I say put the original one back
Title: Re: Google Play Account FIXED!!
Post by: Paul on October 10, 2012, 01:24:58 AM
Quote
I can always update the app desc for the current version to say that any new version u come out with is what the users should download and that the old version will no longer be updated

That's along the lines of what I'm thinking, too.  I haven't logged into your account and I'd like to keep it that way so it isn't associated with me through IP or any other metadata (in case my account gets targeted again by the crazies and Google's DMCA-review system is still screwed up).  So pointing folks to the "official" free version for a while from your app, and then eventually un-publishing it.

I think what I'll do is write a special update for your branch, which changes the icon to have a crossed-out symbol over it, and upon running the app it will show a pop-up dialog with a message explaining the situation, with information on moving over your save-games after installing the "official" version.

I won't do any of this until I figure out how to fix my merchant checkout account issue first, though.
Title: Re: Google Play Account FIXED!!
Post by: Tom.K on October 10, 2012, 01:26:04 AM
I say put the original one back
Same, and make sure to remove screenshots just in case.
Title: Re: Google Play Account FIXED!!
Post by: Tripod on October 10, 2012, 09:30:27 AM
Congratulations Paul!  It's about damn time they sorted this out (well partially).

The advantage of re-publishing the original app, is that it has the higher installs count and a longer history (and it would be a nice slap-in-the-face to Brad who started this whole thing by taking that one down).  Also, fewer users would have to re-purchase the app, since there are already over 50,000 installs if I remember right, compared to like 5,000 installs with the second one.
Sounds like the better option.
Title: Re: Google Play Account FIXED!!
Post by: Epic_bubble on October 10, 2012, 01:26:39 PM
Awesome news! I say go for the first one. :)
Title: Re: Google Play Account FIXED!!
Post by: jacklebott on October 10, 2012, 04:27:51 PM
I vote to go for the first option, just as a kick in the teeth to the guy who took you down to begin with. On the matter of repurchases, even if you upload a totally newly package-named app, I'd rebuy it in a heartbeat
Title: Re: Google Play Account FIXED!!
Post by: Paul on October 10, 2012, 04:47:25 PM
I submitted everything I could to request my checkout merchant account to be reinstated, and was very clear about the documents that couldn't be attached, because I can't access the account, and that I am an individual developer not a licensed business.

If it doesn't work out, I did a little research and figured out that there is a process now for transferring a developer account's apps from one gmail account you own to another (it's basically a bass-ackwards way Google came up with for changing the gmail address associated with your developer account).  This overly-complicated process could be exploited to transfer all my apps to a new gmail account that does not currently have a checkout merchant account associated with it yet, and then create a new checkout merchant account after the transfer is complete.  A bit of a hassle, but it is an option if the reinstatement process doesn't pan out.

I tried to contact Google support about the problem, to maybe at least get an automated email that addresses the "chicken-or-the-egg" issue with the account reinstatement application.  Well, let's just say that didn't work.  Am I the only one who sees a problem with this page? (notice the instructions for obtaining the required Merchant ID)

(http://www.paulscode.com/images/wtf_google.png)
Title: Re: Google Play Account FIXED!!
Post by: Paul on October 12, 2012, 09:12:55 AM
I got an automated response from Google Checkout support today.  The problem isn't fixed yet, but at least it is encouraging in that it shows my request hasn't been rejected (yet anyway), and that it was received and sent to someone for processing.  Hopefully it won't take as long for them to fix this problem as it did for them to fix my developer account!

Quote
Hello,

Thanks for reaching out to us. To ensure a faster resolution, Ive forwarded your message to our specialists. Well respond with additional information as soon as possible.

In the meantime, feel free to contact us again if you have further questions. We appreciate your patience.

Sincerely,

The Google Checkout Team
Title: Re: Google Play Account FIXED!!
Post by: Rotary Heart on October 12, 2012, 11:00:32 PM
I did a factory reset and my phone got Mupen installed from playstore :P Congratz!!!
Title: Re: Google Play Account FIXED!!
Post by: trev186 on October 13, 2012, 01:03:08 AM
My account was hacked once and google made me go through a similar process to be able to purchase applications again.

They sent a similar list (no business license requested)

I sent them what files applied in my situation and after about a week I had everything back
Title: Re: Google Play Account FIXED!!
Post by: anthony001 on October 14, 2012, 06:21:03 AM
does this mean that you will start updating mupen once you've fix the remaining problem on your account?
Title: Re: Google Play Account FIXED!!
Post by: Paul on October 14, 2012, 10:13:55 AM
does this mean that you will start updating mupen once you've fix the remaining problem on your account?

Well, I and other devs like lioncash and others have continued to update it all along (check out the massive amount of activity that has been happening on github since the 1.9.2 update, and threads here on the forum about some of these like native USB joystick support, the Majora's Mask fix, menu system changes, core updates, and new devices in the profiler). The reason I haven't put out 1.10 is because for a few months after 1.9.2 I was focusing on my commercial app during what little free time I had between out processing the Air Force.  Now I have the time, but my main development PC is in storage until we buy a house, so it is difficult to fix bigger problems from my netbook, like the broken save-state function, which is necessary before publishing an official update.  But progress is being made and will continue, rest assured!
Title: Re: Google Play Account FIXED!!
Post by: Paul on October 14, 2012, 02:14:09 PM
Google responded with an automated email, that they are NOT going to reinstate my Google Checkout Merchant account.  They said they won't provide any further details "for security reasons".

I'm unclear on the logic behind this (it has to be faulty computer logic that some amateur programmer wrote).  The account was disabled along with my developer accounts because of the DMCA claims.  Google has acknowledged these claims were bogus and they have reinstated my developer account and all my apps.  What logical reason is there for not reinstating the checkout merchant account?

Anyway, like I mentioned in an earlier post, I figured out a way around this problem by moving the apps from one gmail address I own to another (in this case, I'll just move them from "paulscode" to "paulscode2").  Then I'll create a new checkout merchant account for paulscode2 and I'll be back in business.  It's annoying to have to work around an obvious logic error like this, but I don't see anything in Google's terms of service that says I can't do it, so I'm going to give it a shot.

Title: Re: Google Play Account FIXED!!
Post by: anthony001 on October 17, 2012, 09:46:31 AM
sorry for pestering you like this lol but can you upload the next version beta 1.10 here in your own forum? I would like to have a taste of the awesomeness haha. hope the graphic glitch on LoZ OoT is solved hehe
Title: Re: Google Play Account FIXED!!
Post by: Paul on October 17, 2012, 09:51:20 AM
I'll have the release candidate for 1.9.3 up later today or tomorrow.  1.10 is not currently at a point where you can play games.
Title: Re: Google Play Account FIXED!!
Post by: littleguy on October 18, 2012, 12:47:06 PM
I'm not sure whether to re-publish the original app that was taken down first, or re-publish the second one with the renamed package-name that was taken down second.
...
Also, what are everyone's thoughts on the free version?
I'm wondering if it might be best to simply have a free version only, and put the ability to donate inside the app.  This could either be a link to a paypal site, or use Android's In-App Billing (http://developer.android.com/guide/google/play/billing/index.html).  I worry that a donate version will get you pulled down again (although I know many developers do this and they are just fine).

How deeply have we looked into the licensing stuff?  It seems to me like Epic Amazing Games is violating the terms of the GPL by running ads.  Plus it doesn't seem to release the source code.

Edit: I just checked google play and I can no longer find Epic's ripoff!  Is justice finally being served?

Edit: On another note, I just found this app (https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.usapp.mupen64plusae), which at least posts the source code (looks like a fork of the original) and mentions GPL.  But how can they legally charge money?

Edit: And another ripoff (https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.timzuehlke.emulator64)...
Title: Re: Google Play Account FIXED!!
Post by: Paul on October 18, 2012, 01:14:16 PM
I'm wondering if it might be best to simply have a free version only, and put the ability to donate inside the app.  This could either be a link to a paypal site, or use Android's built-in pay-for-addon-content system (I forget the name of it).

Google requires any charged additional content to be processed through their service (the only exception is apps that are designed to sell content, like Netflix, for which the app is merely a front-end to an already established service).  For apps, this is typically done by publishing a paid-for activation app on Google Play that is installed on top of the free app, or by doing the "lite/ full version" scheme generally used by emulator devs.  This requirement by Google is designed to prevent developers from using Google Play to publish their apps for free, then allowing users to "activate" the app as a way of getting around paying Google's service fees.  While in-app donations may not fit into this category, it is skating on thin ice, because some folks might perceive it incorrectly and flag it (I do not trust Google to look at it the circumstances very closely if that were to happen)

It seems to me like Epic Amazing Games is violating the terms of the GPL by running ads.
I just found this app (https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.usapp.mupen64plusae), which at least posts the source code (looks like a fork of the original) and mentions GPL.  But how can they legally charge money?

That is apparently a common misconception about GPL-licensed applications.  The GPL has absolutely no requirements in it that money can not be charged or that ad-systems can not be included.  In fact, the GPL addresses this specifically in the Preamble, which makes the GNU position on this pretty clear:

Quote
When we speak of free software, we are referring to freedom, not price. Our General Public Licenses are designed to make sure that you have the freedom to distribute copies of free software (and charge for this service if you wish), that you receive source code or can get it if you want it, that you can change the software or use pieces of it in new free programs; and that you know you can do these things.

Epic Amazing Apps was not pulled because the ads were violating the GPL.  They were most likely pulled, because their ad system violated Google's terms of service which requires letting folks know if you are going to use notifications or add browser bookmarks or install apps, and provide an option for them to decline or remove these changes.

When other branches of Mupen64Plus AE (like Totally N64) were taken down because of charging or ads, it was not because those apps were ever in violation of the GPL.  It is because some idiot either thought this was a violation (or at least thought it was a good-sounding excuse) and filed illegal DMCA take-downs against them.  I don't understand the mind-set of breaking a law in order to prevent someone else from breaking a law (especially without even taking two seconds to pull up google and see that they are not!)

Anyway, I'll get off my high horse now.  I've just been dealing with this issue for so long that it tends to get me fired up when someone brings it up  ;D
Title: Re: Google Play Account FIXED!!
Post by: Rotary Heart on October 18, 2012, 01:59:12 PM
You could add not a directly donate button, nut a button that can send them here to your forum and add a donate button here on your forum. I personally will love to donate it (I bought it when it was on play store and I could do it again) since this is by far the best emulator, and better that you take your time to answer everyone.
Title: Re: Google Play Account FIXED!!
Post by: littleguy on October 18, 2012, 02:43:27 PM
Wow, thanks for clearing it up so well.  I should have hit the search button before I posted because you've probably answered this many times already. :-[
Title: Re: Google Play Account FIXED!!
Post by: Paul on October 18, 2012, 03:06:32 PM
At the end of the day, the whole reason for publishing the donation version was to take advantage of the fact that 90% of shoppers don't read the description to even realize they are donating in the first place, and can get the app for free.  This means more money in donations which has a greater impact.  I was able to donate a lot of money to various contributers and projects that the app is based on, and host some fun community-building events like the artwork competition.  I honestly debated even putting a free version on the play store at all, as having the free version here means more people are likely to visit the forum and increase community involvement in the project.  I ultimately decided to publish both versions, mainly to steal customers from Brad who were putting up with his advertisement BS because they thought he had the oldy free N64 emulator (again because they didn't read), but also because I realize English isn't everyone's first language.
Title: Re: Google Play Account FIXED!!
Post by: Paul on October 18, 2012, 06:17:21 PM
I'll have the release candidate for 1.9.3 up later today or tomorrow.  1.10 is not currently at a point where you can play games.

Ended up spending most of today in interviews and then my phone went out and I had to go in to have a new one shipped.  It'll probably be Saturday before I'm ready to start testing 1.9.3 release candidates.

Also, I just realized I don't have Trev's digital signature on my netbook (it's on my development PC which is still in storage), so I won't be able to update it on Google Play anyway.  :(
Title: Re: Google Play Account FIXED!!
Post by: Vincentmrl on October 19, 2012, 10:36:01 AM
Congrats for having won the fight (you was the winner since the beginning of this).
oh damn, seeing mupen64 images I get the old school feels when this was an alpha and you always had to move the rom in the folder and games would play perfectly, any way to find what was making it go so fast on older devices and maybe put it for armv6 in next version? I remember you said you updated whatever the thing was because some phones could crash and I remember they weren't armv6, I hope you can put these old files making emu go fast.
Title: Re: Google Play Account FIXED!!
Post by: Paul on October 19, 2012, 10:49:20 AM
Which version did it start going slower?  Was version 1.0 already slower than the Alpha tests, or did it happen later?  I would like to track this down since somebody else recently said the Alpha tests were faster than the current version.

There are links to the older Beta versions HERE (http://www.paulscode.com/forum/index.php?topic=96.msg2243#msg2243).  Could you try and see if any of those are faster?
Title: Re: Google Play Account FIXED!!
Post by: Vincentmrl on October 20, 2012, 09:48:49 AM
well the games were going nicely since last no gui version, aka alpha, after you changed the gles2n64 plugin tho it started going worse and worse. Is there a way to download the older packages, since any version downloads the last uploaded emu files?
Title: Re: Google Play Account FIXED!!
Post by: Paul on October 20, 2012, 10:12:37 AM
I'd have to look to see what changed in the data files.  Haven't tested the older Beta versions like 1.0 in a while to see if they are broken.  Basically I need to figure out if the slowdown started in one of the later Alpha versions or in one of the early Beta versions.  Note that Beta 1.0 is identical to the last Alpha version, except it had a rudimentary GUI (the game activity and plug-ins were identical), so the slowdown most likely did not occur in the transition between Alpha and Beta testing, but rather in an update before or after the Beta 1.0 update.
Title: Re: Google Play Account FIXED!!
Post by: Deadrabbtz on October 22, 2012, 08:51:11 AM
Sorry if posting in wrong place. Please can u try to fix donkey Kong 64. People say that it crashes after cut scene but in n64oid if u skip cut scenes in options the game works but there is a bug that makes u go through walls so game is unplayable. I was hoping to get it to at least load so I can test if the bug still exists in mupen but it doesn't even load. Thanks for all our work.
Title: Re: Google Play Account FIXED!!
Post by: Paul on October 22, 2012, 09:16:31 AM
The walking through walls also affects the PC version of Mupen64Plus, I believe, so no reason to think it would work in our branch.
Title: Re: Google Play Account FIXED!!
Post by: Paul on December 05, 2012, 04:45:31 PM
And now my Google Wallet account is good to go!  I can now sell apps on the Play Store.  Just in time  ;D
Title: Re: Google Play Account FIXED!!
Post by: xperia64 on December 05, 2012, 05:19:11 PM
The walking through walls also affects the PC version of Mupen64Plus, I believe, so no reason to think it would work in our branch.
Wii64 is the only mupen64plus fork that fixes DK64 in that aspect. (not sure if mupen64k does that as well). Hopefully that fix can be ported over
Title: Re: Google Play Account FIXED!!
Post by: SilentHunter382 on December 06, 2012, 06:24:57 AM
And now my Google Wallet account is good to go!  I can now sell apps on the Play Store.  Just in time  ;D

That is good to hear Paul. :)
Title: Re: Google Play Account FIXED!!
Post by: Sarkie on December 07, 2012, 06:18:03 AM
The walking through walls also affects the PC version of Mupen64Plus, I believe, so no reason to think it would work in our branch.
Wii64 is the only mupen64plus fork that fixes DK64 in that aspect. (not sure if mupen64k does that as well). Hopefully that fix can be ported over

He's updating it too, it seems: http://emulatemii.com/

If you look in the commits, http://code.google.com/p/mupen64gc/source/list?num=1095  (made the pagesize all the commits) there are a few DK64 things, if that helps on finding a fix.