The Microsoft Store was supposed to give Windows 11 users a safe and easy means of finding apps. But it has only achieved the opposite: the Microsoft Store is full of scams, mainly paid versions of open source applications like VLC or Firefox. Finally, Microsoft says that it will take this issue seriously.
Under Microsoft’s new app store policies, which take effect on July 16, users can’t “attempt to profit” from software “that is otherwise generally available for free.”
This rule is long overdue, but as many developers note, it’s a bit too broad. Some open source developers sell their apps on the Microsoft Store instead of asking for a donation. This is usually made clear in the app description; see the Paint.net listing on the Microsoft Store for an example.
Yes, that was the intention. I really appreciate the feedback @IntroRafael @unixterminal @anaisbetts ! We are listening and will seek to clarify the wording as soon as possible. https://t.co/uIZswaS16U
Giorgio Sardo (@gisardo) July 6, 2022
In a series of posts on Twitter, Giorgio Sardo (general manager of the Microsoft Store) stated that this policy is supposed to protect both customers and open source developers. Microsoft doesn’t want to attack legitimate app store listings, and due to feedback, it will update its new policy to accommodate open source developers.
Presumably, any legitimate list of open source applications will have to include a notice to customers. This notice will ensure that people don’t pay for apps that they can get for free, unless they want to pay and support the developer of course.
How Microsoft actually handles this new policy is a mystery. Fraudulent open source listings have plagued the Microsoft Store (formerly the Windows Store) since its launch in 2012. At one point, Microsoft encouraged fraudulent behavior by giving away $100 for every app uploaded to its store.
Source: Microsoft via Windows Central