Archive for September 19, 2022

Monday, September 19, 2022

Extra iOS 16 Paste Prompts

Sami Fathi:

The new prompt was added to iOS 16 as a privacy measure for users, requiring that apps ask for permission to access the clipboard, which may have sensitive data. The prompt, however, has become an annoyance for users as they install iOS 16, as it constantly asks for permission whenever they wish to paste something into an app.

As user annoyance with the behavior boils high, Apple has finally responded, saying the constant pop-up is not how the feature is intended to work. MacRumors reader Kieran sent an email to Craig Federighi and Tim Cook, complaining about the constant prompt and advocating for Apple to treat access to the clipboard the same way iOS treats third-party access to location, camera, microphone, and more.

Ron Huang, a senior manager at Apple, joined the email thread saying the pop-up is not supposed to appear every time a user attempts to paste.

I don’t understand why there’s a prompt at all if the paste was initiated by the user from an OS-provided button. Are they worried about apps faking button clicks? If so, how does the prompt actually protect against that if sometimes I do want to paste? Plus, there’s a bug where the paste button in the popover is blank before the first time you paste.

Michael Love:

I’m actually grateful for this botched rollout, because it’s going to make it next to impossible for Apple to shift blame to developers for future annoying clipboard alerts.

We still get blamed for TCC forgetting things…


Update (2022-09-23): Cyclebrity:

Thanks, I need all the help I can get to save auto-paste from death 💀

Stanislav Dvoychenko:

Apple’s decision to have it as their own UIControl makes sense to me. But they went for “security via obscurity” when it comes for how this control works. If you don’t obey rules that are not documented, it will be asking for permission all the time or even randomly.

John Gruber:

The best thing about this copy-paste permission alert that is driving everyone nuts in iOS 16: the apostrophe in “Don’t Allow Paste” is the wrong one. It’s upside down.

Funding The App Association (ACT)

Malcolm Owen:

Advocacy groups and lobbying parties often make claims to sway public, judicial, and political opinion one way or another, and that has been quite evident for some news stories about the tech giants. The App Association (ACT), which aims to fight for the rights of developers, generally offers favorable opinions about Apple.

Apple is said to be the source of most of the funding of the ACT, according to four former employees speaking to Bloomberg. While ACT has confirmed it receives more than half its funding from Apple, the employees claim the percentage received is a lot higher than half.


That funding gives Apple a lot of sway in the group, with the employees believing this provided Apple the opportunity to control the policy positions of the organization.


The App Association has large sponsors such as Apple, Intel and VeriSign. Microsoft, eBay and Oracle used to sponsor the App Association.


Update (2022-09-23): Florian Mueller:

I would also strongly encourage the European Commission to reject any submissions by ACT | The App(le) Association on whatever topic. And should one or more antitrust decisions come down against Apple in the App Store context, the European Court of Justice should not allow an organization mostly funded by Apple to join as a “third-party” intervenor.


While low-key compared to Apple, the “(Application) Developers Alliance” is basically the same thing as ACT, just that they’re funded by Google.

Florian Mueller:

According to what Bloomberg researched, ACT has a budget of approximately $10 million. It never made sense that those funds would come from 5,000 small app developers: there’s no way that small app developers would pay an average of $2K/yr. for a “membership” in a lobbying organization.

Astroturfing is bad enough in its own right. But Apple and ACT added insult to injury at the start of the COVID-19 pandemic when ACT applied for, and received, PPP funding.


That level of following is consistent with pictures that have been shown from ACT events. Also, I attended an ACT event in Berlin three years ago, where I was the only actual app developer in the room. The rest was in-house and outside counsel of the usual suspects (Apple and its allies on standard-essential patent policy).

See also: Hacker News.

Update (2023-05-23): Florian Mueller:

It speaks volumes about Apple’s values that even after Bloomberg exposed ACT | The App(le) Association as an astoturfing operation, they still attempt to fool policy makers--such as European Commission officials--into believing that ACT represents small app developers and IoT startups. They continue to issue statements, to lobby policy makers, to organize events, and to participate in debates--all of that in the name of small companies, even when they actually work against them, such as on App Store issues.


A former de facto ACT employee indirectly and inadvertently threw the organization under the bus on Friday: Alexander Prenter, a Brussels-based native New Zealander who is now a policy officer at the Fair Standards Alliance. […] In other words, Mr. Prenter conceded that SMEs don’t pay for ACT’s work (as Bloomberg had also found out).

Weathergraph 1.0.117

Tomas Kafka:

Lock screen widgets! Ready for iOS 16 and Apple Watch Ultra.

Two large widgets with a signature weather graph and text weather summary. Inline widgets to tell you current conditions, wind speed and direction, precipitation or time of the next rain, or UV index. And many small widgets for individual weather metrics.

Support for Lock Screen widgets is welcome, but I’m finding it far less useful than the Apple Watch complication. With the widget being monochrome and also fading into the photo background, it’s harder to see what’s happening on the graph. Also, slots for widgets are scarce, with only two for larger widgets if I want to keep the date visible.


Update (2022-09-26): Ashley Bischoff and dkhamsing note that there is a third widget slot at the top, though I find that shape less useful for widgets and dislike how it abbreviates the date.

20 Years of RSS 2.0

Dave Winer (via Manton Reece):

I announced here on Scripting News that the final RSS 2.0 spec was out. But! -- no one had a problem with it. I guess we were ready to go to the next stage, with a clear way forward.


A list of blog posts from 2002 leading to the publication of the RSS 2.0 spec on 9/18/2002.