Richard Gaywood called me and others out over at TUAW today and asks this of us about Apple’s policy change:
To the bloggers above and to the many others passionately defending this change, I simply ask: why am I supposed to be happy about this? Or to put it another way: if all those apps disappear from my devices, what’s in it for millions of end users like me?
The better question is: how has this negatively impacted you, the user, thus far? Sure Readability was rejected, but apps are rejected every day. You can’t be negatively impacted by that rejection unless you work for Readability — meaning you never had that app to begin with so you don’t know if you would have even liked it.
The entire basis of Gaywood’s frustration (and others) is predicated on the idea of “what might happen” and not on a more clear “what is happening”. The App Store has never been black and white, so to call these new rules “clear” is to show a fundamental lack of comprehension of how the App Store has been run to date. The App Store has been built on a set of gray rules — granted and very dark gray, but gray nonetheless. To assume now that the rules are suddenly black and white is to make a rather bold assumption.
Again, we all need to take two steps back, a deep breath, and wait to see how this plays out in June — when supposedly it is do or die time for current apps violating these rules.