Requirements for news and news-related apps

This article provides an overview of steps that developers can take to comply with the News policy requirements and what you need to do to submit a news and news-related app. But it isn’t a substitute for the policy itself. Read the whole policy to make sure that you understand and comply with its contents.

Overview of requirements for news apps

Apps that weren’t previously declared as "News" in Google Play Console, but are currently listed under the News and Magazine category on Google Play and describe themselves as "news," fall under the News policy.

If your app primarily contains user-generated content (like a social media app) or its primary purpose is to generate revenue through the sale of products or services, then it should not be declared as a News app on Google Play.

Steps to resolve common issues

The following overview lists the most common issues that developers encounter and the steps you can take to address them. Follow these tips and make sure your app is in compliance with the News policy.

How to address requirements for ownership information

News and news-related apps on Google Play must have a valid website or in-app contact page. Make sure you provide ownership information about the app, including contact information.

  1. Create a dedicated website or in-app contact page.
  2. Make the contact information easy to find (such as linking at the bottom of your home page or in your site navigation bar).
  3. Provide valid contact information for the news publisher, including either a contact email address or a phone number. 

Links to social media accounts are not sufficient forms of publisher contact information for news or news-related apps.

How to address requirements for timely content

Make sure news articles are timely and frequently updated. News and news-related apps must have some current news and should not contain only static content (older than three months).

How to address requirements for original sources for all articles

  1. Provide ownership information showing the source of each news article (including, but not limited to, the original publisher or author).
  2. In cases where it’s not customary to list individual authors, the news app must be the original publisher of the articles. 

Remember that links to social media accounts are not sufficient forms of author or publisher information. 

Other requirements

News apps must adhere to all other requirements listed in the News policy, such as ensuring that the content is free from significant spelling and grammatical errors, refraining from having affiliate marketing or ad revenue as the app’s primary purpose, and denoting publishing sources on news aggregator apps.

Additional notes

As per the requirements of Rule 5 of the Indian Information Technology (Intermediary Guidelines and Digital Media Ethics Code) Rules, 2021 (Intermediary and Digital Media Rules, 2021), Google is required to inform you that, in addition to the applicable Terms of Service, publishers of news and current affairs content may be required by Rule 18 of the Intermediary and Digital Media Rules to furnish the details of their accounts on Google Play to the Ministry of Information and Broadcasting, Government of India.

 

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