AltConf Barred From Streaming WWDC


It is not clear why Apple has decided to crack down on AltConf’s plan to stream WWDC content as AltConf has been able to do so in the past. This is the first year that AltConf has offered a $300 paid ticket option, but AltConf’s organizers do not believe that is a factor as paid tickets do not guarantee seating for the WWDC viewing theater.

Apple is being tone deaf here, but I can’t help but think that involving copyrighted media while generating revenue, even with the best of intentions, significantly increases the risk of legal action. I also suspect that ignoring AltConf, particularly given its proximity and size to WWDC, could be bad for Apple if their content is somehow unreasonably re-used at some point.

What I don’t understand is why can’t Apple acknowledge the obvious supply/demand situation leading to AltConf and simply grant them some level of permission.

Update: Would you look at that! Apple has apparently given AltConf permission to stream the WWDC Keynote and Platforms State of the Union address, but not the developer sessions. This resolution seems appropriate to me. AltConf gets to provide enthusiasts another venue to gather for the publicly available keynote, but not stream the developer sessions under NDA. I still think Apple should have done a better job handling this, particularly in terms of timing. That said, the lack of gratitude towards Apple in AltConf’s press release, which only thanks “the community”, comes off to me as a bit entitled. I am sure Apple probably wasn’t very friendly or accommodating during this whole snafu and that the community was the main factor for the change of heart, but Apple also had no obligation to provide any streaming access. After everything they’ve undoubtedly been through, I understand if AltConf doesn’t want to thank Apple, but not doing so at this juncture does more damage to their cause than good.