After enduring a series of strikes from Google’s video-sharing platform YouTube, with hundreds of Bitcoin and crypto videos being deleted, the crypto community is now facing another ban.
This time, Google has suspended MetaMask, a crypto wallet and mobile browser that is backed by Ethereum incubator ConsenSys.
The Google Play app store is no longer listing MetaMask’s Android client. MetaMask’s technology allows users to manage their crypto, browse the Ethereum blockchain from a standard browser, run Ethereum DApps and make Ethereum transactions. Last year it became the most popular Ethereum wallet worldwide when it hit a milestone of 1.3 million downloads.
Google claims that MetaMask violated its financial services policies which also expressly prohibits crypto mining on mobile devices.
MetaMask has cried foul and has appealed the decision, but to no avail, despite clarifying that the company’s technology does not do crypto mining.
“The appeal rejection cited the same policy: No mining on Android. We don’t. It’s unclear whether the reviewer doesn’t understand the policy, or whether they are enforcing an unwritten policy. Either way, it’s time to #ProtectWeb3.”
Google’s financial services policy also states,
“We don’t allow apps that expose users to deceptive or harmful financial products and services.
For the purposes of this policy, we consider financial products and services to be those related to the management or investment of money and cryptocurrencies, including personalized advice.
If your app contains or promotes financial products and services, you must comply with state and local regulations for any region or country that your app targets – for example, include specific disclosures required by local law.”
MetaMask’s crypto wallet was previously delisted on the Chrome Web Store in July of 2018, but it was promptly reinstated. According to MetaMask,
“Our community spoke loudly then, and we were spontaneously re-listed.”
As a Web 3.0 tool, MetaMask is focused on promoting decentralization, a hallmark of the next iteration of the internet.
The MetaMask fall-out follows several days of content creators watching their videos get zapped off of YouTube, disappearing en masse due to spurious claims that the content was “harmful or dangerous.” Calling the deletions a pilot error, YouTube is now reinstating those videos.
The Crypto Lark tells his 34,000 followers on Twitter that his crypto channel is up and running again.
“Strike removed and nearly 300 videos restored on YT, looks like we are back in business, time to talk about crypto on the internet again.”
While MetaMask is hoping for a similar reversal, it highlights alternatives to the status quo.
“If left banned, we will be working on other ways of bringing our services to users still stranded on the Android platform while they migrate to something more free. The story will not stop here, and it certainly won’t stop with the Goliath winning. #ProtectWeb3.
So please, speak out, and show Google that you will not support a platform that censors disintermediation. Plenty of other great browsers out there with Firefox and brave. Some nice YouTube alternatives are coming around, too.”
The list of both centralized and decentralized alternatives is growing.
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