WWDC Boycott of Feedback Assistant

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2024-06-05 04:30:07

I really want to report bugs to Apple. In fact I do frequently report bugs to Apple via the WebKit Bugzilla. I want to report bugs to Apple so badly that sometimes I write entire blog posts here about Apple bugs. But Apple's Feedback Assistant is a frustrating nightmare, for a number of reasons, and I'm refusing to use it. Back in November I blogged about the Apple developer boycott of Feedback Assistant, which also has an official web page. I won't rehash the list of reasons for the boycott from the earlier blog post; if you've used Feedback Assistant frequently, you can probably come up with a similar list off the top of your head. The point of mentioning the boycott again now is that Apple's Worldwide Developer Conference (WWDC) starts next week. At that time, developers will have our maximum leverage. Apple needs us as an unpaid QA labor force to test their beta operating systems, find bugs, and report them. The news media covering WWDC is also interested in developer impressions. WWDC is the perfect time to strike, that is, to go on strike.

Working within the system, filing bugs against Feedback Assistant itself, has proven futile. Over many years, decades even, countless bugs have been filed against Feedback Assistant and its predecessor Radar, yet Feedback Assistant remains fundamentally terrible, hostile to developers. At best, it has received a few minor, superficial, palliative tweaks—lipstick on a pig, as it were—but nothing to alter the relationship between Apple and developers. The bug reporting system doesn't treat developers with respect, as valuable contributors to the system.

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