While more states are passing laws legalizing marijuana, Google is trying to make it harder for smokers to connect with sellers. Earlier this week, the company announced that it will no longer allow apps in the Google Play Store that “facilitate the sale of marijuana or marijuana products regardless of legality.” In other words, even in states where weed is legal, Google will boycott these apps.
This new approach is now recorded in the Google Play Store Developer Center website (via Android Police) and gives three examples of violations. These incorporate enabling clients to arrange marijuana through an in-app shopping cart feature; helping clients in organizing the delivery or pick up of marijuana and facilitating the sale of products containing THC. Before Google updated the page, there was no policy specifically related to marijuana apps.
“These apps basically need to move the shopping cart stream outside of the app itself to be agreeable with this new policy. We’ve been in contact with a large number of engineers and are working with them to answer any specialized inquiries and help them implement the changes without customer disruption.”-Google
In the meantime, Google guaranteed to make the Google Play Store safer for children and families. In a blog post published Wednesday, the company wrote “At Google Play, we’re committed to providing a positive, safe environment for children and families. Throughout the most recent couple of years, we’ve helped parents find family-friendly content through the Designed for Families program and empowered them to set digital ground rules for their families with Family Link parental controls.” And that evidently means making the Play Store without weed.
Back in 2015, we told you the names of some of the apps that smartphone owners could use to find the nearest dispensary. But thanks to Google’s new policy, that has all gone up in smoke.