By Philip Elmer-DeWitt
June 29, 2011
June 29, 2011

After 600 negative reviews and a 5,000-signature petition, it offers 4 ‘not yet’s and 2 ‘soon’s

Eight days after releasing Final Cut Pro X, the latest update to its popular professional video editing software, Apple AAPL issued an FAQ designed to answer what it describes as “a lot of discussion in the pro video community.”

“A lot of discussion” is an understatement.

The program was lampooned on Conan O’Brien. It triggered the current No. 1 letter-writing campaign on PetitionOnline, with more than 5,000 signatures. And it drew more than 600 one-star reviews (the most negative Apple allows) on the Mac App Store.

The FAQ itself is a classic. Apple continues to describe the update as “a breakthrough” that has “impressed many pro editors.” But in its answers, it is forced to acknowledge the limitations of the version released last week and ask customers to take what is, in effect, a rain check.

By our count we read:

  • 4 “not yets”
  • 1 “in a limited manner”
  • 1 “as soon as they are updated”
  • 1 “will be available soon”

Apple has issued some refunds to disgruntled buyers, but they are not guaranteed.

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