Apple Reporting Inaccurate Readership Numbers to Publishers ➝

Jack Marshall and Steven Perlberg, reporting for The Wall Street Journal:

The company mistakenly has been underestimating the number of readers using the News app since its launch, and passing that inaccurate information on to publishers. […]

Eddy Cue, Apple’s senior vice president of Internet Software and Services, said the company missed the error as it focused on other aspects of the product. The company didn’t explain how the problem occurred or say exactly when it might be rectified.

“We’re in the process of fixing that now, but our numbers are lower than reality,” he said. “We don’t know what the right number is,” but he added that it was better to undercount than overcount traffic.

This seems like an odd thing to admit publicly — would anyone have complained if Apple just fixed this on the backend silently?