The myth of open source rests on two improbable assumptions. The first is that a significant proportion of users can fix bugs. That is true at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, where the concept of open source was first formalised in the 1980s by Richard Stallman and others, and it is true in some of the geekier corners of the internet. But on programs intended for use by the non-programming public, it’s a very different story.
This is important because of the second crucial false assumption: that even if not all users can fix a bug, they can help find them. They can’t. Most users just think: «The computer isn’t doing what I want.»