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myBrickset Android App

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Comments

  • deusxanimedeusxanime MN, USAMember Posts: 13
    Glad to know it's not me going crazy or having issues with my device then! 

    It is very odd though that there is no visual feedback now when pushing the sync button. I push it and it just feels like nothing happens, which was why I thought it was broken. Would it make sense to have the sync icon change color or something while it is doing a "manual" (aka pushed the button) sync? Or is that not something you are supposed to do with the new guidelines at all?

    To get the "corrupt db" error - while trying to figure out why it wasn't syncing/getting the notification icon anymore (which now I know is expected but didn't at the time), I went into settings and checked the "Force Refresh" and "Manual Refresh" boxes. Then I went back in to the main screen for the app and hit the refresh button. Once I did that I would get the "Syncing" popup/box over the top of the app and the first time it gave me the corrupt db error. I hit sync again and after that it seemed to fix itself, or at least not give me the error anymore. 
    Andor
  • RikTheVeggieRikTheVeggie CanadaMember Posts: 352
    There shouldn't really be a need to use the Refresh button in normal usage, but I'll see if it's possible to give some visual indication that a Refresh has been requested.

    Is there a reason you use Manual Refresh and Force Refresh? (I will investigate and try to resolve any db errors caused by using these).  They were designed to work around issues some users experienced with the Android Sync Service but shouldn't really be required.
  • deusxanimedeusxanime MN, USAMember Posts: 13
    I don't normally use Manual or Force Refresh. I only did it because I wasn't really sure if the normal refresh was working. Now that I know you've changed it so there is no notification icon, I can let it be. =)
    Andor
  • RecceRecce Tiny Little Red DotMember Posts: 923
    deusxanime, lol me too. Was thinking why it wasn't syncing so tried changing some settings. Then saw that the latest changes to my brickset database was reflected in the app so realized it had somehow sync'ed in the background.
    Andor
  • RikTheVeggieRikTheVeggie CanadaMember Posts: 352
    Sorry folks, I guess the lack of an icon is quite a major change for those of you that were used to looking out for it!  Would it help if I were to remove the 'refresh' icon?  All it does is ask Android to sync, but the spec states the request can be ignored / handled later - I don't have any direct control over it, so even previously there could have been a delay between pressing 'refresh' and the notification showing.
  • NickF22NickF22 United KingdomMember Posts: 460
    If I remove a "wanted" flag from a set, it seems to come back after a while. It's like it's not syncing back to brickset that wanted = 0, so next time it syncs it pulls back the old value. I thought it was a one-off but it's happened a couple of times over the last few days.
  • RikTheVeggieRikTheVeggie CanadaMember Posts: 352
    Thanks for the info @NickF22, I'll take a look.
  • RikTheVeggieRikTheVeggie CanadaMember Posts: 352
    @NickF22 - sorry for the delay getting back to you, my day job got in the way.  I've found the issue and will be pushing out a fix shortly.
    NickF22kiki180703
  • NickF22NickF22 United KingdomMember Posts: 460
    ^That's great thanks! 
  • VorpalRyuVorpalRyu AustraliaMember Posts: 2,317
    edited October 2016
    Just got a new phone, but I can't find the app on the Google Play store...
  • RikTheVeggieRikTheVeggie CanadaMember Posts: 352
    Google have removed myBrickset from the Play Store following an alleged Trademark infringement.  The only channel available to me to resolve the issue is the email address of a lawyer and you can imagine how well that's going (I wouldn't be surprised if the account routes to /dev/null).

    When I get home from work I could send you a copy of the app, but I doubt it'll work as it won't be able to download the expansion file that includes images etc.  If you give me a few days I can recompile a version that includes everything in the apk (I've just got back from vacation and am working round the clock putting out fires at my day job), or in the short-term you can look at one of the other apps in the Play Store as they all download images etc on-demand rather than storing a copy offline.

    If I don't get anywhere with the lawyer then I don't know what the long-term plans are for myBrickset - I could perhaps host it on my private website and remove the functionality where it includes a low-res copy of all images (I don't have the bandwidth to support that).

    FYI this is what I received from Google (basically a badly formatted and incomplete form letter):
    This is a notification that your app, <%APPLICATION_NAME%>, with package name <%PACKAGE_NAME%>, has been removed from the Google Play Store.
    REASON FOR SUSPENSION: Alleged trademark infringement.
    Google has been notified that aspects of your app, myBrickset: LEGO® Set Guide, allegedly infringe upon the trademarks of others, and it has been removed from the Google Play Store due to a violation of the Developer Program Policies.
    All violations are tracked. Serious or repeated violations of any nature will result in the termination of your developer account, and investigation and possible termination of related Google accounts. If your account is terminated, payments will cease and Google may recover the proceeds of any past sales and the cost of any associated fees (such as chargebacks and payment transaction fees) from you.
    You may contact Day Pitney LLP at [email protected]. If Day Pitney LLP contacts us specifically authorizing your app to be re-published, and your app does not otherwise violate the Developer Distribution Agreement and Developer Program Policies, we will reinstate the app.
    Please note that we have included a text copy of the Infringement Notice we received for your reference. If you have any further concerns about this issue, please address them directly to the complainant in the Infringement Notice provided below.
    The Google Play Team
    Text Copy of Infringement Notice: INSERT HERE


  • VorpalRyuVorpalRyu AustraliaMember Posts: 2,317
    Man, that is crap, love the lack of information, probably some other dev has sour grapes about your app.
  • danny316pdanny316p Member Posts: 13
    I can't recall off the top of my head if you had the standard Fair Play disclaimers on the app's description, but to the extent that I remember it, you appeared to be doing everything you were supposed to. My best guess at a legitimate reason for this is that you've been caught by a recent crackdown on using minifigure-based images in a logo. LEGO's community team recent sent a memo to their LAN saying that the minifigure is a trademark and that LUGs aren't allowed to use minifigures or parts in their logos anymore, and they have til a particular date (January 2018 IIRC) to comply with the new rules. You'd be wise to look into a new logo (even if that's not why they went after you this time) and tell the lawyers that the functionality of your app doesn't infringe on LEGO's policies.

    LEGO likes to pretend that everyone who matters sees LAN news announcements, so they probably think you were warned before lawyers got involved. They don't seem to grasp that there are many important people in this community who are not an ambassador and aren't specifically given necessary info by an ambassador. When I've spoken to the appropriate people at LEGO about this gap in communication, they've refused to acknowledge it, as if they were intentionally missing my point.

    ...but shame on Google for removing a useful app for such a flimsy reason. Some countries require removing content for copyright infringement, but not trademark infringement. This remains - by an enormous margin - the best app I've ever seen for a mobile device, and I'd say every new Android device that it can't be installed on is less valuable without it.
    VorpalRyukiki180703catwranglerGalactus
  • RikTheVeggieRikTheVeggie CanadaMember Posts: 352
    Thanks for the info on the logo, I'll look into a new one (I chose the current one as it's "similar" to an actual piece without actually being one, and I can't draw so wanted something simple!).  Still trying to get a response from the lawyers, if that doesn't work I'll try going through Google's appeals process quoting a lack of response (but don't expect to fare much better there to be honest).
  • sid3windrsid3windr BelgiumMember Posts: 1,457
    Oh boy, that does make little sense. There seems to be more valuable input coming from @danny316p than from Google/Lego themselves! Hopefully this great app is back in the play store soon, I use it pretty much daily!

    Did it literally just say "Text Copy of Infringement Notice: INSERT HERE" ?

    Maybe @Huw could give you a license to use the brickset logo somehow? Just thinking out loud...

    VorpalRyukiki180703
  • RikTheVeggieRikTheVeggie CanadaMember Posts: 352
    @VorpalRyu and anyone else who needs a copy of the app.  

    It's Turkey Day up here in the Great White North, so I've been able to get some time away from the day job and create a version of myBrickset that doesn't rely on Google Play.  Unfortunately this doesn't ship with any images, but they will download on demand.

    You can download the app here: http://otissoft.co.uk/mybrickset/bin/myBrickset-local-release-67-2.5.0.apk

    I've given it a quick test and everything seems fine but LMK if you experience any issues.
    NickF22BeOMaffyDLegoboystluxkiki180703
  • VorpalRyuVorpalRyu AustraliaMember Posts: 2,317
    Thanks for that @RikTheVeggie, muchly appreciated, syncing up now. :)
  • RikTheVeggieRikTheVeggie CanadaMember Posts: 352
    Managed to get some more info from Google (a copy the infringement notice which was meant to have been sent with the initial mail) which included references the specific items allegedly being infringed.  Digging around on the USPTO these seem to be:
      "LEGO" trademarked work
      "LEGO" Logo

    The logo isn't used in myBrickset and LEGO is always referenced as "LEGO®" or "The LEGO Group" so I don't think I'm infringing and was just caught up in the net along with 20+ other apps.

    It looks most all Android apps linked from http://brickset.com/tools/mobileapps have been taken down now, though there are some exceptions such as https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=fr.jca.apps.android.ibrickset which looks like it can be used as an alternative to myBrickset if you don't want to sideload the apk.

    Will post more data as it becomes available.  
    catwranglerkiki180703
  • silentguysilentguy GermanyMember Posts: 1
    Any news? (Or place to look out for news?)

    I just told a friend of mine about this "new to me" app and how much I liked it and he came back telling me that it does not exist in the appstore where I got it. I must have installed it shortly before it was taken down...
  • RikTheVeggieRikTheVeggie CanadaMember Posts: 352
    no news yet unfortunately, I shall post if I manage to get back in the Play Store (or even if it looks like it may be likely) but worst case I can always distribute the app through the forums or my personal server.
  • MrShinyAndNewMrShinyAndNew Member Posts: 281
    My understanding is that the Lego group is cracking down on the trademark for the Minifig. So possibly if you update the icon for the app it will be fine. It's probably pretty straightforward to bring it into compliance, even if the rules are dumb.
  • RikTheVeggieRikTheVeggie CanadaMember Posts: 352
    Thanks, I'm thinking it may also be the images being used on the main menu (eg, the 'search' minifigure).  The infringement notice specified two specific trademarks but nothing I'm infringing as far as I can tell.  Still trying to get an official answer from the lawyer, once I know specifically what's wrong I can resolve it.  
  • MrShinyAndNewMrShinyAndNew Member Posts: 281
    Well, my information is second-hand, but I heard from my LUG leader that the Lego .... something.... network, i.e. one of their outreach groups, sent notices to all the registered LUGs regarding the crackdown. I haven't yet seen the notice, but it was specific enough that I was advised that our new website shouldn't use minifigs in its imagery. I don't think a photo of minifigs would infringe, but we wanted to err on the side of caution. There may be other crackdowns underway as well but that's the only one I'm sure of.
  • ClutchPowerClutchPower Austin, TexasMember Posts: 220
    Not sure if this was mentioned ( I'm kinda lazy to read everything ) but is there also an app for IOS 
  • RikTheVeggieRikTheVeggie CanadaMember Posts: 352
    @ClutchPower - at the moment (and for the foreseeable future) myBrickset is Android only.
    There are several iOS apps listed on the main site that may fulfil your requirements.

    ClutchPowerkiki180703
  • RikTheVeggieRikTheVeggie CanadaMember Posts: 352
    As previously posted, myBrickset was removed from the Google Play Store following a Notice of Trademark Infringement by a lawyer representing The LEGO Group.  There was no attempt at contact prior to the takedown notice, so I was provided no opportunity to challenge the allegation or rectify any issues.

    I have made several attempts to contact the lawyer, all of which have been met with silence.  A member of the forum who happens to be a US attorney very kindly intervened on my behalf, but was also stonewalled and was unable to get any specifics about why myBrickset was targeted nor any willingness from the lawyer to review the situation either before or after changes were made to the app.

    After hitting a dead end with the legal route, I initiated an appeal through Google's appeals process.  This unfortunately met with no success - despite laying out all of the facts including a thorough analysis of the trademarks mentioned in the takedown notice, how they apply to myBrickset and whether they are violated (they are not), I have received notification that the appeal has been denied and that it this decision is final.  I am not even able to upload an alternative version of the app.  (I have a sneaking suspicion that the denial was automated and guaranteed if no proof of compliance by the original complainant is provided).  Google is presumably more concerned with insulating themselves from any liability than they are with providing hosting for an application that makes them no revenue.

    I have been warned that future violations of the TOS (even though I didn't violated them!), presumably by uploading myBrickset under another name, could result in termination of my account (I have heard stories that this could be the entire Google account, not simply the developer account).

    TL;DR - myBrickset is now permanently gone from the Google Play Store.  If you have it installed currently it will continue to work.  If you need to install it again (eg you have a new phone) you can do so from here: http://otissoft.co.uk/mybrickset/bin/myBrickset-local-release-67-2.5.0.apk.
    SumoLegoLegogramkiki180703stluxLegoboycatwranglerkhmellymelJosephGalactus
  • SumoLegoSumoLego New YorkMember Posts: 14,089
    Yeah, both Google and Lego's stateside IP attorneys are extremely responsive.
  • sid3windrsid3windr BelgiumMember Posts: 1,457
    Nice. How about contacting TLG directly? :-/
  • MrShinyAndNewMrShinyAndNew Member Posts: 281
    Wow, disappointing.
  • LegoboyLegoboy 100km furtherMember Posts: 8,829
    It's who you know.

    Really well done Huw.  A not so secret Christmas pressie for someone.  :)
    VorpalRyuJosephkhmellymelkiki180703davetheoxygenmanstlux
  • RikTheVeggieRikTheVeggie CanadaMember Posts: 352
    I'd also like to thank SumoLego for his assistance (and to apologise for the delay in acknowledging him!); I don't want to say specifically what he helped with (oooh.. super mysterious!) but he was very helpful and I'm grateful to him for reaching out to me and providing his support.
    SumoLegoVorpalRyucatwranglerLegoboydavetheoxygenmankiki180703bandit778stluxAndor
  • SumoLegoSumoLego New YorkMember Posts: 14,089
    ^ Happy to oblige - but as @Huw demonstrated - it's getting access to the right person that can effectuate change.

    (I manage my collection with the app, so it was also self-serving!)

    Very happy the app has returned!
    VorpalRyucatwranglerLegoboykhmellymeldavetheoxygenmankiki180703bandit778stlux
  • JudgeChuckJudgeChuck UKMember Posts: 1,441
    This is great news! Well done all. :-)
  • sid3windrsid3windr BelgiumMember Posts: 1,457
    Thank you to all involved - I got a message on my phone yesterday saying myBrickset was updated, which made me smile as I assumed the issue was indeed resolved!
  • MaffyDMaffyD West YorkshireMember Posts: 2,984
    ^ I got the same message, and I didn't know if it was Google being very aggressive in removing the app, or myBrickset being reinstated, so I cancelled the update until I'd asked on here. Very glad to hear that everything has been resolved! Well done all involved.
  • bourgeoispigbourgeoispig Los AngelesMember Posts: 14
    Hooray for the return of the app!
    khmellymelMattDawsonkiki180703Legogram
  • chrisalddinchrisalddin UKMember Posts: 3,022
    @RikTheVeggie
    hello. i am trying to get mybrickset working on a Amazon Fire tablet.
    ignoring the one on amazon fire app store (way out of date) i used a trick to install google play, and download it from that one, sadly all links in a app downloaded still try to take you to Fire App store. so installing the barcode Scanner app dont work as the link for that on fire app store is dead.
    i am trying to work out what app on google play is, the one you are pointing me to when i hit that oh so nice link in your nice myBrickSet App.

    so any help here would nice.

    sorry if this is hard to follow i have dyslexia, i also find remembering how to spell words i don't use alot hard. so i tend to use words i know how to spell. and when i go all technical i become very hard to understand.  i hope you can understand my question. thanks for any help you can give.
  • sid3windrsid3windr BelgiumMember Posts: 1,457
    Chris, no worries, at least I can understand what you are saying clearly. Maybe because I'm a technical person too ;)

    I *think* Android apps using a barcode scanner call a generic "barcode scan" 'intent' (like telling Android "I need a barcode", and it will start an app that has told it "I can scan barcodes") so maybe any bar code scanner you install could work.

    I'm not sure which one myBrickset would suggest as it actually opens up a scanner on my phone already. I have one installed because Google Authenticator wanted me to install one, it's this one: https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.google.zxing.client.android&hl=en

    Seems to work fine with myBrickset.
    chrisalddinkiki180703
  • MattDawsonMattDawson Solihull, UKMember Posts: 1,270
    I second what sid3windr wrote - that barcode scanner app is often referred to in many articles due to it's small file size but usefulness, and I've never had any issues with it. It even allows you to scan multiple things at once and save them to a log!
    chrisalddin
  • RikTheVeggieRikTheVeggie CanadaMember Posts: 352
    chrisalddin the version of myBrickset on the Amazon store should be up to date now, I uploaded a new version a couple of weeks ago.  You can also use the version of the app a few posts up (http://otissoft.co.uk/mybrickset/bin/myBrickset-local-release-67-2.5.0.apk) which doesn't rely on either Amazon or Google.

    sid3windr and MattDawson are correct that myBrickset relies on a 3rd party app being installed to scan barcodes, the most popular one (and the one that I recommend) is "Barcode Scanner" as linked to above (https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.google.zxing.client.android&hl=en).


    chrisalddin
  • NickF22NickF22 United KingdomMember Posts: 460
    I seemed to lose all my owns/wants, and when I logged out, I couldn't log back in again?
  • LegogramLegogram PA USAMember Posts: 320
    I added a set to my brickset last night.  This morning, that is the only set showing in my brickset.  Went online in the hope it would update, but no luck.  Does anyone have any suggestions?
  • VorpalRyuVorpalRyu AustraliaMember Posts: 2,317
    Different issue, it's not updating my sets owned/wanted. I recently added the Fortrex, but when I check, it comes up as wanted, not owned.

    My copy is the latest available from the Google Play store & my phone is a HTC Desire 530 running Android v6.0.1
  • LegogramLegogram PA USAMember Posts: 320
    I have a Samsung Note 5, and it appears I have lost all of my owned sets and minifigs and notes.
  • lego_mini_manlego_mini_man OntarioMember Posts: 2
    As here Nexus 5. First, it shown my owned list is empty. So I tried to remove the app, then reinstalled the app. Now I CAN'T even login. I still see all the list in bricksets website, and using same app in my tablet.
  • SumoLegoSumoLego New YorkMember Posts: 14,089
    Seems to be widespread, as I cannot log-in, either.

    @RikTheVeggie - help!
  • MaffyDMaffyD West YorkshireMember Posts: 2,984
    All working for me, for reference. Although logging in is a bit slower than normal.
  • RikTheVeggieRikTheVeggie CanadaMember Posts: 352
    Sorry for the delay, I have a case of man-flu atm.

    It looks like brickset's api may be experiencing issues - I cannot log in from here either.  I shall do some poking from my test harness and ask Huw to take a look from his end.
    LegogramVorpalRyustluxSumoLegokiki180703SlapNuts
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