Editor's desk: Forumed, friendless, and fined
This week was a blur punctuated by something neither tragic nor triumphant. Part gut check, part gut punch. So let's spin up the FTL drives and jump right to it...
iMore Forums app
Earlier this week we launched the iMore Forums app for iPhone, iPod touch, and iPad. Thousands of you have downloaded it already, but in case you somehow managed to miss it, it's FREE, it's fabulous, and it's available via the App Store:
(If you have any trouble logging in, just see here.)
Friendless; or: whose followers are they anyway?
While I was busy ranting about Twitter restricting third-party clients, I completely forgot to address the parallel dickosity of Twitter turning off API access to Instagram and Tumblr. Both services were using Twitter's service to help you find your friends -- they'd show you the people you follow on Twitter so you could follow those same people on Instagram or Tumblr. Now you can no longer do that. Twitter's happy with Instagram and Tumblr pumping gazillions of tweets into their service, but apparently not with Instagram or Tumblr pulling any social value back out.
To our dismay, Twitter has restricted our users’ ability to “Find Twitter Friends” on Tumblr. Given our history of embracing their platform, this is especially upsetting. Our syndication feature is responsible for hundreds of millions of tweets, and we eagerly enabled Twitter Cards across 70 million blogs and 30 billion posts as one of Twitter’s first partners. While we’re delighted by the response to our integrations with Facebook and Gmail, we are truly disappointed by Twitter’s decision.
So that demands the question: Who owns my follow list anyway? Is it the property of Twitter, the service that enables it, or my property, the user who builds it?
Obviously, Twitter thinks it's them. But the way they're going about it makes me want to strongly disagree. And throw things. Is that really the best strategy?
I've written and said far too much already about the Apple vs. Samsung U.S. court verdict, but two things have stuck with me over the course of the weekend:
First, it was almost uncomfortable watching Apple paint the board aluminum (or whatever color represents Apple in these things). A good fight is a spectacle, but there's no spectacle to be had in a beating like that. Sadly, there was also no Big John McCarthy to pull the jury off, no one gracious enough at Apple to stop the pounding, and no one smart enough at Samsung to throw in the towel. Let's hope now that the bell has rung, this gets settled and settled well before the appeals, bans, and further infringement cases are brought. I don't know who was being more stubborn in the talks to date, Apple or Samsung, but the time for stubborn is over. There's way too much blood on the mats already.
Second, the reaction by extreme Apple and Android supporters on both sides was difficult for me to comprehend. Make no mistake, this was a loss for Samsung, but it was no cause for strutting by Apple. To argue either way is silly. These companies should be fighting over us, not us over them. If you hate a company, or worse, if you hate the people who work for or even just use the products of a company, you need to stop. Now. It's not okay. The bits of plastic in your pockets, and the bits of plastic in other people's pockets are just that -- bits of plastic.
There's much more important stuff for all of us to expend energy on.