Google gets serious about extensions on the Chrome Web Store

Google Chrome

Google has published new guidelines for extensions on its Chrome Web Store.

The browser store now hosts over 200 000 extensions, from ad-blockers to video downloaders and beyond. However, there’s a swathe of extensions that are entirely avoidable. Google’s new guidelines take aim at these.

In a blog post published on Wednesday, the maker of Chrome will not allow developers to create “multiple extensions that provide duplicate experiences or functionality”.

It’s also implementing restrictions on extension titles, metadata and icons.

“Developers must provide a clear and well-written description. Unattributed or anonymous user testimonials in the app’s description are also not allowed,” it added.

Developers are also disallowed to create extensions that sought only to launch another app or web page.

“Extensions that abuse, or are associated with the abuse of, notifications by sending spam, ads, promotions, phishing attempts, or unwanted messages that harm the user’s browsing experience are not allowed,” it also added.

And finally, perhaps most obviously, developers are not allowed to inflate product ratings, reviews or install numbers.

The new guidelines should make the Chrome Web Store a safer, less cluttered experience for users.

Developers have until 27 August to comply, after which “extensions that violate the updated policy may be taken down and disabled,” Google concluded.

Feature image: Google

Andy Walker
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