We've posted a new version of our Application Guidelines today. Please have a look - there are a number of important changes everyone should be aware of.
In particular I want to call out a new section relating to "Application Communications". A little more than a month ago we released our first set of APIs that allow your apps to initiate user-to-user messages, comments, and bulletins. A lot of you have already taken advantage of these capabilities to build more engaging and interactive applications.
The new rules we've posted today give you clearer guidance on what you can and can't do with the communications tools we enable. You should review these rules carefully in the Guidelines, but here's a quick summary of the most important changes:
- No incentives may be given to a member for sending a message, bulletin, comment, or any other form of communication. This includes “points,” “bucks,” increased standing, or even features within the app.
- It must be very clear to a member what they are sending, when they are sending communication. “Share with friends” is not sufficient messaging, the link must state “send comment,” “send bulletin,” and so on.
- The “no popups” rule we have had in place since day one applies to messaging windows. This means no more popping up a messaging window the first time someone tries to use an app. No popping up messaging windows without a user clicking on a very clearly marked link.
To explain these changes Tom Anderson, president and co-founder of MySpace, has posted a special guest blog post here on the MDP site.
We’ve made some additional changes to the guidelines, most of which won’t be a surprise to you (ex: the
guidelines now clearly state iframing canvas pages is allowed).
Every single developer should take a look at the guidelines as soon as possible. We are enforcing these new
guidelines as of today for newly developed applications.
For those applications that are already live, you will all have two weeks from today – until 5pm PST on June
3rd – to make sure your applications are compliant with these standards. After that date we will be reviewing all applications and will take action on those that are not in compliance with the new guidelines.
If you have any questions regarding these changes, please join us in a new forum topic devoted to this subject where we’ll be around to answer your questions.
Finally, I'm pleased to give you all a heads-up that we will be enhancing our messaging APIs in June with the release of our Applications Communication Channel. "ACC" as we call it is a brand-new messaging service built specifically for apps that will enable custom app invites and notifications. More on that soon!