I won’t go in depth on this, but I just want to deliver an opinion. You see, some people are giving Google some backlash for removing a game called “Bomb Gaza” including several other politically-inclined games. Now, on the forefront of this issue, it seems logical for Google to remove such games as it falls behind the sympathies of people regarding the current conflict in Gaza. What other people are expressing, however, is that Google is to be blamed for the mere “availability” of the said game.
First, what I believe these people failed to understand is that Google was not responsible for the existence of those games. They did not develop, design, or code these; they only carried the information in sustenance of the ecosystem (see also: how app stores work). Google might also receive part of the blame since they did not clarify which terms in their development policies were violated, hence were taken down from the store.
Depictions of gratuitous violence are not allowed
Second, we don’t need to look far and wide for a possible violation. Developers must agree to the terms and conditions of the “store” in question, should issues like this arise. Part of this agreement states that “depictions of gratuitous violence are not allowed”. Shouldn’t that be a good enough reason? Sure, there are other violent games out there as well, but there’s another clause in which “Bomb Gaza” could have violated: “We don’t allow content advocating against groups of people based on their race or ethnic origin, religion, disability, gender, age, veteran status, or sexual orientation/gender identity”.
We can go on and on about opinions and propaganda about the conflict, but I’m only writing this to deliver this opinion: let’s think twice before we place blame on anyone or anything, sensitive issues or otherwise.
Some information from TIME