Also the Lazines Factor
There's also a laziness factor here, both by developers and users.
I've noticed a lot of basic apps (for a typical example, displaying the periodic table) go along with their minor updates with no problem, but then suddenly required e-mail, text message, and camera permissions, which a basic reference app shouldn't require.
It could be evil-doings I suppose, but in my opinion it's more likely (since it happened across many apps at about the same time) that developers changed or upgraded their development platforms, and never bothered to change the default-all permissions of the platform when they ported their code.
I uninstalled a lot of apps at the time1.
The other side of the laziness coin are the users of course, who have been using these apps without incident for so long that answering "yes" to the special permissions requests must seem like a natural progression.
1. Except for one that had managed to install itself as a system app -- I do attribute that to evil on their part, and will have nothing ever to do with them.