Are we allowed to discuss?

Forum
iOS & iPadOS

Before anyone jumps down my throat saying, are you stupid? You should know better, absolutely 100 percent no, let me say this, I know that about the private developer seed betas of Apple software, but, here's my question. iOS 13 public beta has been released. As long as I am talking about the public beta, and *not!* and I repeat, *not!* the private seeds, are we allowed to share our findings? If not, it's no biggy, I'll gladly refrain. I just didn't wanna say anything until I new. Again. I get totally that the private seeds are completely off limits to discuss, but the public beta, I mean, come on! They don't call it public for no reason.

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Submitted by AppleVis on Tuesday, June 25, 2019

Chris,

Set out below is the key part of our rules concerning discussion on AppleVis of beta and preview releases of Apple software. 

Apple requires that anybody who legally downloads and installs beta or preview versions of its software accept a Non-Disclosure Agreement. By accepting this NDA, you are limited to what you can publicly say about the software. If you do not follow these limitations, Apple may take legal action against you.

In particular, we direct you to the following sections of the agreement:

6. Nonuse and Nondisclosure of Confidential Information.Except as expressly permitted in this Section 6, you agree that you will not disclose, publish, or otherwise disseminate any Confidential Information to anyone other than individuals who are enrolled in the same individual seed as you, or as otherwise expressly permitted or agreed to in writing by Apple.You further agree to take reasonable precautions to prevent any unauthorized use, disclosure, publication, or dissemination of Confidential Information, including preventing access to or display of the Apple Software to third parties.You agree to use the Confidential Information solely for the permitted uses as set forth in this Agreement.You agree not to use Confidential Information otherwise for your own or any third party’s benefit without the prior written approval of an authorized representative of Apple in each instance.You hereby acknowledge that unauthorized disclosure or use of Confidential Information could cause irreparable harm and significant injury to Apple that may be difficult to ascertain.Accordingly, you agree that Apple will have the right to seek immediate injunctive relief to enforce obligations under this Agreement in addition to any other rights and remedies it may have.

10. Discussion Forums.As part of the Beta Program, you may have the ability to participate in discussion forums provided by Apple about the Pre-Release Software and other Confidential Information that Apple may make available to you.For purposes of such discussion forums, Apple is providing a limited exception to Section 6 by allowing you to discuss certain Apple Confidential Information received by you in connection with a particular seed with other seed participants who are in the same seed as you in the Apple designated discussion forum for such seed, and only within this discussion forum.

Except for the limited purpose of discussions with other seed participants within such forums, you acknowledge and agree that this Agreement does not grant you the right to copy, reproduce, publish, blog, disclose, transmit, or otherwise disseminate any Apple Confidential Information.

When posting to the AppleVis website, we ask that everybody respects and honors the Apple NDA (even if you have not personally installed the software or signed the agreement).

This means that the following types of posts are not permitted on the AppleVis website:

  • Anything which could be considered as technical support with beta software. For example, seeking help with installing/using beta software or problems with native or third-party apps after installing a beta.
  • Discussion of bugs introduced or fixed in a beta release.
  • Detailed descriptions, reviews or walk-throughs of how new or changed features are implemented in a beta release.

Any information publicly shared by Apple about new features or changes in a forthcoming software release is not covered by an NDA. This typically includes information made available at events such as new product launches, Apple’s Worldwide Developers Conference, and on the preview pages of Apple’s website. Consequently, this information can be freely shared and discussed on the AppleVis website. Additionally, new or changed features in a beta release can be freely shared and discussed on the AppleVis website - even if not originally made public by Apple itself- provided that any post satisfies the rules set out above on this page.

Please note that we reserve the right to remove from the AppleVis website any posts which we believe to be a breach of these rules, as well as questions that could only be answered by breaching them. Removing user-submitted content is never a pleasant decision for us, and something that we only do on the rare occasions when we believe it is necessary in order to protect the reputation and best interests of the AppleVis community.

Our full rules covering the discussion of pre-release Apple software (and the reasons for them) can be read here.

Submitted by Chris Gilland on Tuesday, June 25, 2019

This NDA you're talking about is for the private developer seeds. As far as I know, it is not for the public beta seeds. I know it's a gray area. I agree, but, ultimately, I definitely did not have to sign any agreement at all when enrolling in the public beta. The only NDA I had to sign was the one associated with my developer membership. Why am I doing both the private and the public? Now that! Would! break NDA. I can't go into that. I can only say that yes. I'm doing both, and that with the public seeds, there was no such NDA. Yes, there were terms I had to follow, like, don't come crying to us if you kill your purple/green barny the dinosaur dall, Just kidding, but in all seriousness, yeah, that! I had to agree to, yes. But there was nothing stating that the things found in the public seeds were confidential. If they were confidental, then why are they (notice the quote marks,) "public?" I'll refrain from posting my findings, since you all really insist, with all due respect, but please do point me where specifically you are seeing these terms in the public beta terms, and also, please site the source URL where you are specifically seeing this. This isn't a challenge. It's only that I am wanting to see this online myself, not just in a post forum comment. What you pasted above was verbatim the TOS I see on developer.apple.com, but not on beta.apple.com. Which the ladder is for the public beta seeds, for those wondering the difference. Enough said. I'm not gonna argue this. I respect your wish, though I entirely 1 million percent disagree.

Submitted by Chris Gilland on Tuesday, June 25, 2019

OK. I just read this over again more thoroughly, and you are correct. I stand corrected, and hope you accept my sincere appology.

Submitted by Holger Fiallo on Tuesday, June 25, 2019

Interesting. Whenever a public beta of iOS comes out, you can find a video in youtube about what is new. Same in different web pages that focuses in technology about apple. To learn what is new about the many beta in the past, I check the many articles you can find in news in my iPhone or youtube.

Submitted by David Goodwin👨‍🦯 on Tuesday, June 25, 2019

As this topic was discussed recently in the forum, I will cheat somewhat here and quote part of one of my replies in that thread:

It really couldn't be any clearer. Apple does not want beta testers talking publicly about its beta software.

Quite reasonably, you might direct me towards the myriad of websites, podcasts, and social media accounts which clearly disregard this.

I would look foolish if I tried to claim that Apple's beta software wasn't widely discussed elsewhere.

I would look foolish if I tried to claim that I didn't myself read and listen to some of that discussion.

I would look foolish if I tried to claim that AppleVis would be the one website out of thousands that Apple would choose to target for legal action if we were to post about even a single bug in its beta software.

However, what I will argue, is that the motives and priorities of the AppleVis community are quite different to those of commercial websites with staff salaries to pay; and also different to those of many individuals posting to their own website, blog, or social media account.

I am not saying that we are right and everybody else is wrong. What I am saying, is that any policy on Apple's non-disclosure agreement has to reflect and be to the benefit of the motives and priorities of the AppleVis community.

For me, right at the top of the list of our community's priorities are raising awareness of accessibility; asking software developers to listen to the needs of those who rely on software being accessible, wanting software developers to actively engage with our community; and encouraging software developers to make accessible design a priority.

I don't see how on one hand we can be asking this from developers, whilst at the same time showing a disregard for what developers reasonably ask of us when using their software.

Essentially, we can't have it both ways. We can't ask software developers to listen to our community, whilst at the same time refusing to listen to them.

In the case of Apple, I can state with complete certainty that it does indeed currently listen to and respect our community.. Things said on AppleVis can and do make a difference.

I see no benefit from potentially sacrificing this for being able to talk about a bug which may only ever exist for the lifetime of one release during the beta cycle.

If you are going to challenge me on what's the point of Apple listening and respecting our community if that doesn't turn in to something meaningful, such as actually fixing the bugs that exist in the publicly available releases of its software, it's most certainly not because they don't want to.

Nobody at Apple wants there to be bugs in its software. In the case of its accessibility features, there's a significant number of Apple's Accessibility Team who are themselves users of these features, so it's crazy to think that they wouldn't want to do everything possible to have the best experience.

And as long as Apple listens and respects our community, we have the capacity to make a positive difference.

I personally see no benefit from weakening our community's relationship with Apple and other developers by ignoring what they ask of us in regard to the use of their beta software, but do recognize that not everybody agrees, and that this is a topic that occasionally needs to be revisited.

I should mention that there are numerous other reasons for our policy being what it is, and that these can be found on the policy page.

Submitted by Chris Smart on Tuesday, June 25, 2019

Guys, just join the mailing list
public-beta-users at groups.io, and talk about it all you want.

CMG: Your imaginary Jesus just told me to tell you to keep taking your meds.

Submitted by Holger Fiallo on Tuesday, June 25, 2019

Beta group. I prefer checking youtube or apple insider or 9 to 5. I just hope people respond to those question that people put her when they ask for help. Like I did but so far nothing, nothing, did I said nothing. Just asking for help mail.

Submitted by AnonyMouse on Tuesday, June 25, 2019

I just hope that people insisting to be on the beta testing are actually filing bugs in the Feedback than just comparing notes and talking about it.

Submitted by tunmi13 on Thursday, June 27, 2019

I'm going to state this in two ways, one being from my perspective, and the other being from Apple's.
My perspective: I think that beta software is often buggy or fragile. In fact, going back 2 years, iOS 11 Beta was just insanely beuggy. Apps froze, my iPad practically crashed at least twice a day, and it was not a fun experience.
However, back on the topic, the site specifically says "Public" Beta. Several people, when they gear the word Public, think that it represents something that can be talked about, in the open.
In fact, the definitions of public, taken from Oxford American Dictionary, are
1. of or concerning the people as a whole, or
2. perceived, or existing in open view
When public is said in such a way, people infer that it can be posted on various forums and/or site/blogs. Even when signing up and enrolling your devices at beta.apple.com, no reference to an NDA is given.
Apple's perspective however, may be different. When they say public beta, they probably are going with definition 1, and I quote, of or concerning the people as a whole, but probably only people as a whole in a small group of testers.

I'm not necessarily sure if this is the case, but it can be rather confusing since people are honing on definition 2.

Submitted by jcdjmac (not verified) on Friday, June 28, 2019

Hi, Here's my take. I've been participating in the beta program since it launched in 2009, and since then, I've been following all rules and agreements, as well as filing all bugs using feedback assistant. I actually agree on what the previous poster said. that's all.