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After hitting 1 million downloads in less than four months a few weeks ago, Themer was suspended from the Play store on the night of February 2nd due to a copyright concern regarding our "Seven" theme (which is just one of over 200 themes available in Themer). Apple Inc. claimed that several icons used in Seven infringed their copyrights. We immediately removed this theme and thought that, at worst, Themer would be back on Play in a few days. But now a week later, we're facing the possibility that a few days might turn into a few weeks. We've spoken to legal representatives from Apple (who have been very nice, reasonable, and helpful), and they have no remaining concerns. But apparently, Google has a process for these things, and there's nothing we can do to accelerate that process. Unfortunately, we still have not heard from anyone at Google.
We've included the letter from Google we woke up to on the morning of February 3rd at the end of this post.
We replied to Google's letter and have contacted everyone in our Rolodex that could help to restore Themer. Because Google does not provide an advocate for developers (or even a single point of contact), we're stuck emailing random people who may or may not be able to assist.
So when will Themer be back on the Play store? It's frustratingly impossible to predict. Someone at Google must first confirm that the content in question has been removed and follow their own internal procedures before they flip the "on" switch. It's likely that we are in a queue, waiting with other apps that require evaluation.
Why not release the APK? Because we prefer to not circumvent the Play store. Doing so would result in those users not getting updates. And since we have an aggressive upgrade schedule on our way to Themer 1.0 (non-beta), that's a non-starter.
We set out to create the best homescreen experience available for Android by allowing beautiful themes to be applied with one click. We've been thrilled by the response from the press and from our users. People love Themer, and that makes us really happy. Nothing has changed on our end in terms of the development path and the future we envision for the app. In fact, we're near completion of a new version that offers memory and battery optimizations, new customization options for the app drawer, and tons of bug fixes. We'll be ready to get this update out as soon as we're back on the Play store.
Current users will continue to be supported with new themes daily and assistance with any software issues via support.themerapp.com.
There are 12 people that spend all day, everyday, working on about Themer, and this situation, while frustrating and a bit disheartening, has not detracted from our resolve and mission. We graciously thank everyone who has downloaded Themer, shared a theme, or recommended the app to their friends. And to those who want to try Themer for the first time but can't: we'll be back up soon. In the meantime, please enjoy our videos on: http://www.themerapp.com/
Please feel free to send any questions or comments to: email@example.com. You will get a response.
Letter from Google:
This is a notification that your application, Themer Beta, with package ID com.mycolorscreen.themer, has been removed from the Google Play Store.
REASON FOR REMOVAL: Alleged copyright infringement (according to the terms of the Digital Millenium Copyright Act).
All violations are tracked. Serious or repeated violations of any nature will result in the termination of your developer account, and investigation and possible termination of related Google accounts. If your account is terminated, payments will cease and Google may recover the proceeds of any past sales and the cost of any associated fees (such as chargebacks and payment transaction fees) from you.
Please review the Developer Distribution Agreement and Content Policy to ensure that your applications are compliant with our policies.
The DMCA is a United States copyright law that provides guidelines for online service provider liability in case of copyright infringement. Click here for more information about the DMCA, and see http://www.google.com/dmca.html for the process that Google requires in order to make a DMCA complaint.
Google may reinstate your application into the Google Play Store upon receipt of a counter notification pursuant to sections 512(g)(2) and (3) of the DMCA. Click here for more information about the requirements of a counter notification and a link to a sample counter notification. If you have legal questions about this notification, you should retain your own legal counsel.
Please note that we have included a text copy of the Infringement Notice we received for your reference.
The Google Play Team
Text copy of DMCA complaint:
subject_lr_dmca: Your Request to Google
represented_copyright_holder: Apple Inc.
location_of_copyrighted_work: The original artwork for the following
infringed iOS7 app designs may be viewed on any iDevice running the iOS7
Notes (Copyright Reg. No. VA1871602)
Stocks (Copyright Reg. No. VA1871786)
Newsstand (Copyright Reg. No. VA1871650)
Maps (Copyright Reg. No. VA1871438)
Camera (Copyright Reg. No. VA1871668)
Photos (Copyright Reg. No. VA1871779)
Settings (Copyright Reg. No. VA1871669)
description_of_copyrighted_work: Apple Inc. is the sole and exclusive owner
of the copyright in the original artwork for the app designs in its iOS 7
operating system. The foregoing application being distributed on Google
Play intentionally includes unauthorized reproductions of Apple’s
copyrighted apps, including its icon designs for Notes (Copyright Reg. No.
VA1871602), Stocks (Copyright Reg. No. VA1871786), Newsstand (Copyright
Reg. No. VA1871650), Maps (Copyright Reg. No. VA1871438), Camera (Copyright
Reg. No. VA1871668), Photos (Copyright Reg. No. VA1871779), Settings
(Copyright Reg. No. VA1871669) and other features. This application
violates Apple's copyrights, in addition to other Apple IP rights. (This
app developer’s unauthorized reproduction of Apple’s multiple copyrights
may be viewed in-app by first downloading and installing the app, allowing
Themer to create widgets on one’s device, and loading the “Seven” theme
from the list of the “Most Popular” category under the Browse Themes.)
Great video by !!! Totally rocking CES 2014!
The first version of Carbon was released on Android in February 2013, that’s about Ten months ago and some. Ever since then the landscape of Android design & experience has changed dramatically. With all the changes and with a Quarter Million users strong we had to cater to the changes. V2 was planned. We worked on it. And here it is.
New Visual Style
The new style is based completely around the element Carbon, staying away from our heavily imitated vicious Hawk. Going crystal on this one!
The tone of the app changes with the style and this time around we’ve gone extra simple yet maintaining elegance and uniqueness.
Interface, we hate calling it UI
Never has Carbon been simpler although we’ve been always called “Minimalists” with v2, it’s taken to an extra mile of simplicity and liteness on the eyes. We cleaned up the textures, meshes and the background noise. Result is a clean Timeline.
Based around Three main timelines
We’re keeping it the same way. Timeline,@Mentions, and Direct Messages. Everything else are either a swipe or a maximum of Two taps away. That way we’re keeping the balance between power users and those who don’t utilize Lists and Searches.
Home screen is nothing but a Timeline of Tweets with a touch of personality of users’ own style, the Avatar. It’s the User & the Timeline. Nothing else.
Power-users Not Forgotten
With a lot of simplicity often comes canceling features and a narrow navigation. It was great challenge to maintain Super mode and Simple mode and having them in one experience. So Quick Timeline was reborn. A Timeline that acts like a Wild Card, you can load any type of Tweets on it from Favorites, Retweets, and Lists to Saved Searches. All just a swipe away from the right side of the screen, and it remembers its state with every time you open the app. A smart 4th column is what Tweetdeck users would call it.
With v1, the concept was to have literally timeline-looking Timeline. That is with the lines that point out to to Times. A literal Timeline visual as opposed to the traditional list of rows on an app chrome.
With the #C2PointOh it all changed. Even less chrome, and less markers. The idea was to make it even better read and skimmed through. We’ve taken @screenames& times to the bottom of the Tweets, adding more emphasis on users Avatars instead. Better typography and spacing.
Timeline Media, we go square on this one!
This had to be a big change based on our observations. When we designed the first Image preview style on Timeline(the one every Twitter app in the galaxy adopted) the landscape of Image uploads was different. Square photos were not the norm, now, square photos are the majority of the photos on our streams. Photos, videos and all of the media previews are now square on our Timelines, reducing the need to zooming in on photos as they show the whole thing right on the Timeline.
Instagram? Vine? Yup, specially for those two.
As performance gets better we now are able to implement more stuff right on the Timeline. While we could’ve done these long ago, performance and jumpiness that such additions add to Timeline experience have been stopping us. Not anymore. We now have extra Quick Actions right on the Timeline. One tap and you have access to everything. Links, #Hashtags, and @Mentions become clickable and you’ll be able to operate on Tweets right from the Timeline.
One-tap access to the “Chaos Menu”
No overflow menu this time. Except, it’s a “Me” menu. One Menu that holds all of the personalization and “my” stuff. Profile, Retweets, Favorites, Lists, and other accounts in addition to Trends, Search, Mutes, and of course what would personalization be without Preferences. Oh, and if you have more than one account, it’s right here on the “Chaos Menu”.
New Tweet Screen
Again easier on the eye, less layout visuals and more content. We added Retweets to the mix and made conversations even simpler, a draggable drawer.
Even better Profile screens
While everyone’s celebrating the use of “Banners” we went old-school with this one, back to profile Backgrounds instead. Why? Banners are great for Landscape interfaces, where we have more width than height to use content, on a portrait experience such as Twitter? We decided, something more vertical would go better, specially that Background images have far higher resolutions usually and make for great backdrops.
If you have used our v.1, you’d know by now that v.2 is a brand-new experience rooted in the same dark Carbonic mines. The same core, different new and refreshing experience.
So what else does v.2 bring?
Lots of under-the-hood re-design and fixings. Major performance enhancements specially for loading times and screen transitions.
A host of fixes and crashes are not fixed, specially the bug that prevented users from uploading photos on high mega-pixel phones.
- Don’t Disturb Mode
- New Notification Ringtone
- Oxide(Black & White) Mode
- Enhanced Tweet Sizes Settings
- Users can now update their Avatars right from Carbon.
- Retweet screen to see who retweeted your Tweets.
- Better Trending Topics screen and handling
- Improved Hashtag Timeline
- New Compose Screen
- New Direct Message Screen
- Enhanced Vine Video Playback and Repeat
- Redesigned Widget
- Quote Tap gesture for quick RTs and Quotes
- Filters are now called Mutes
Our feature request lists are still long, we could go on for a long time if Twitter doesn’t stop us and enough folks keep donating to support the development.
So go get it! If you're still getting the old version on the store, give it a bit until it updates for you.
Tweet it with #C2PointOh and let everyone know!
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