Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) and Google Inc (NASDAQ:GOOG) are trying to end the explosion of ‘Flappy’ games by force, turning down new apps that have the word flappy in the title and kicking existing games out of the iTunes App Store and Google Play respectively (though it looks like the games can come back with changed names), reports Sarah Perez for TechCrunch.

Flappy Bird Apple Google

Flappy Bird was a popular mobile game that became a mainstream talking point when its founder, who must have been raking in cash, withdrew his game from the App Store because he found the acclaim to be unbearable.

While it might sound irrational, the first impulse many people have when they hear that a game has been removed from the App Store is apparently to search for it on the App Store. Mobile game developers have been cashing in on this by creating Flappy Bird clones, changing the name slightly. Now they’ll have to change the titles a little bit more.

Flappy games ‘leverage a popular app’

Flappy Dragon, developed by Ken Carpenter at Mind Juice Media, was one of the first to be rejected by the Apple Store, and Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL)’s email explained that: “We found that your app, and/or its metadata, contains content that could be misleading to users, which is not in compliance with the App Store Review Guidelines. We found your app name attempts to leverage a popular app.”

Apple, Google treat ‘flappy’ like spam

It’s a funny justification, because the app that Flappy Dragon and others are ‘leveraging’ isn’t available, so there isn’t an original developer to protect in this instance and arguing that Apple wants more originality from developers doesn’t make sense. Cloning successful games has been standard practice for some time, and neither Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) nor Google Inc (NASDAQ:GOOG) has tried to stop the practice, but it seems that both companies have decided to treat the word ‘flappy’ like spam. Flappy Fish, for example, is still available under the name Splashy Fish, so it must be that Apple and Google are just tired of hearing the f-word.

“Apparently Flappy Dragon (or whatever I end up calling it) will need to stand on its own. Probably change it to Derpy Dragon,” tweeted Carpenter.