Is Google deleting critical reviews from the Play Store?

  • I've had numerous factual critical reviews disappear from the Play Store. On more than one occasion, I received a notification that a developer had responded to my review. When I went to look at their response, my review was gone, i.e., it appeared that I had never rated or reviewed the app. This led me to look at my other reviews and discovered many of them missing.

    My reviews were entirely factual and did not violate Google's . Examples of reviews that were silently deleted:

    This app blocks the back button and has no apparent way to exit. You have to kill it by swiping from recents.


    Sign-in required to try it out.

    I've also noticed that you can no longer identify bad apps by the telltale U-shaped ratings curve, i.e., many 1-stars and many 5-stars.

    Is Google engaging in mass deletion of critical reviews?

  • Thanks for A2A, before answering i must add that though this question is rather off-topic for this community, i would still try to answer it.

    Google isn't generally engaging in mass deletion of critical reviews.

    However, incase the app developer reports of recieving spam negative reviews and if Google's regex algorithms and human intervention proves them to be true, multiple negative reviews might be removed by Google.

    Another instance where something similar might be done from Google's end is when the algorithms detect people installing apps, reviewing it and uninstalling within minutes - such reviews are considered illegit so removed automatically.

    And regarding that U-shaped histogram type review curve, Google ditched it aroud an year ago and i do agree that it was really 10 times useful compared to the new implementation

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