I'm working on a large scale project and assessing XStream versus other object serializers. The ability to control error handling when encountering unexpected xml is essential to us and is a dealbreaker in this case.
We're creating a fairly mature migration feature, which requires serialized data to be forwards and backwards compatible. We'd love to use XStream, but without fixing this bug there seems to be no support for continuing deserialization after encountering unexpected xml... This is a pretty serious drawback, and I think its fair to say that many projects are running into this same problem.
Having an "ignore errors" flag should be easy enough and would go a long way. An equally cheap alternative that would be helpful is delegation of xml parsing errors via some callback object.
At this point, I don't think anyone here is being especially picky – any simple solution would be extremely helpful.