Hello Boris I used to think like you, and then I learned a few things about computer users. To paraphrase the much regretted Steve Jobs, people do not want to learn how to use a computer, in fact they would rather not use a computer at all, people want to write a letter, listen to a song, watch a video, and in order to make more sales we need to provide a means to do that that is as friendly as possible and requires as small of a learning curb as possible.
This is he is ultimately right in his assessment of people at large. I am a computer guy, I love computers, I love being able to do interesting things with them (and graphics is one of them), and I also love the process of using my computer for that; but I must understand that there is a huge amount of people, and they are the majority, whether we like it or not, who are only artists, not computer people + artists, and they just want to make their art, in an intuitive environment.
Adobe understands that, so they aim to make Lightroom simple; hence the part about them applying slight dynamic range tweaking behind the scenes and other things we sometimes end up discussing in this forum - things that make images arguably prettier but inaccurate.
Adobe understands another thing as well; that beyond simplicity in use, most people get addicted to the convenience of what they are used to, and that can actually extend to stupidly great lengths. I mean I have a friend who chose Lightroom over RawTherapee because she prefers a dark theme …and by the time RawTherapee had one, she was already used to the layout in Lightroom and wouldn’t leave it. Point is, people get used to things and are not willing to let go and learn something new, and Adobe is willing to profit off of it. Adobe also reinforces that by having made a name for themselves, as what they like to call “industry standard” and people will go for the software for which most youtube tutorials are made for, and the software Universities teach. They want to make money off of their product, and they want as much of that as possible, and they apply as much manipulation as they can to make it so. We may not like it, but it is how competitive commerce goes; after all that is what it is, commerce …unlike projects like RawTherapee that are in it to produce good software rather than profit; while Adobe wants to produce a good profit, and if must be, they will also improve on their product, when means of enslaving people through legislation-backed subscription licenses aren’t enough
Both of the two things you mention here are not by coincidence; they were both intended and what Adobe did, they did in order to make them happen; namely to create dependency to their own products and to create the illusion of inexistency of alternatives. It’s dirty, but very lucrative business.
Microsoft tried it before …back around 2004 when they hailed Linux as being the cancer of the software industry; while now many hail Microsoft and a good agent that supports Linux our of the goodness of their hearts. One of the biggest BSes I have heard that so many people seem to gladly swallow and it is unexplainable to me.