Linked by Thom Holwerda on Sun 12th Sep 2010 21:16 UTC
Microsoft Piracy is a big problem for large software vendors licensors like Microsoft. As such, the Redmond giant is undertaking several anti-piracy efforts all over the world, and, of course, it attempts to make its software harder to crack through activation and validation. As The New York Times has discovered, however, the prevalence of pirated Microsoft software in Russia is giving the Russian authorities a pretence to raid the offices of outspoken advocacy groups or opposition media - supported by Microsoft lawyers. Update: Microsoft responds with a blog post that says all the right things, including "Microsoft will create a new unilateral software license for NGOs that will ensure they have free, legal copies of our products."
Thread beginning with comment 440669
To read all comments associated with this story, please click here.
ballmerlikesgoogle
Member since:
2009-10-23

So the advocacy groups legally buys licensed Microsoft software, and still end up getting screwed over by the government by a pretence that it is pirated software.

Then Microsoft goes and hides, because its not interested in helping the common man from getting screwed over by a government that is using Microsoft's own piracy issues as a cover to stifle dissent.

Guess your on your own from now on, Microsoft is only interested in your $ and nothing else.

More or less shows again how an American company has no interest in the concepts of freedom and democracy, the very things that allowed it to become a company in the first place....

Go Linux....

Reply Score: 9

Thom_Holwerda Member since:
2005-06-29

Exactly.

If one company screws over another - alas. If one company screws over its customers - alas, you have a choice. However, this is just plain wrong - ethically speaking.

Reply Parent Score: 4

Moredhas Member since:
2008-04-10

It would make great publicity for Microsoft to come out on the side of Good for once. Make an example of legal software owners, show the world it's better to buy than to pirate because of the protections you are afforded. The message this sends is that the environmental group might as well have pirated Windows and Office for all the difference it makes. Since everyone pirates Windows, obviously every Windows user is a pirate.

Reply Parent Score: 4

WorknMan Member since:
2005-11-13

More or less shows again how an American company has no interest in the concepts of freedom and democracy, the very things that allowed it to become a company in the first place....

Go Linux....


The irony of this statement is that without the participation of some of these American companies, Linux would not be where it is today.

Reply Parent Score: 4

ballmerlikesgoogle Member since:
2009-10-23

Linux is where it is today because of the GPL, not necessarily because of how an American or any other national company, foundation, or individual has made contributions to Linux kernel (that includes Microsoft)

The GPL is what keeps the companies (and everyone else) in line who use and contribute to the Linux code. Linux would not be what it is today had it not been put under this particular license.

Reply Parent Score: 4

lemur2 Member since:
2007-02-17

So the advocacy groups legally buys licensed Microsoft software, and still end up getting screwed over by the government by a pretence that it is pirated software.


Clearly, the best thing to do is to completely avoid running commercial-licensed software. This way, even the most unscrupulous of authorities cannot go after you, and confiscate your computers, through claiming "investigation of piracy" as an excuse. One cannot pirate software for which everyone has unconditional permission to execute.

In an environment like Russia, I am surprised that advocay groups apparently did not figure this out for themselves.

Reply Parent Score: 4

Moredhas Member since:
2008-04-10

I'm sure something about patent violation could be trumped up. Even if they used GNUsense, they could blow some smoke about GUIs, or file management concepts, even if it's all unfounded.

Reply Parent Score: 2

qbast Member since:
2010-02-08

Cannot? They went after group that had fully licensed Microsoft software. What makes you think that using GNU would prevent authorities from raiding them, taking the computers and then slowly and carefully investigating if their software is indeed legal?

Reply Parent Score: 3

Laurence Member since:
2007-03-26

[qClearly, the best thing to do is to completely avoid running commercial-licensed software. This way, even the most unscrupulous of authorities cannot go after you, and confiscate your computers, through claiming "investigation of piracy" as an excuse. One cannot pirate software for which everyone has unconditional permission to execute.

In an environment like Russia, I am surprised that advocay groups apparently did not figure this out for themselves. [/q]
Running Linux (for example) wouldn't protect you.

These people weren't raided because they were running Windows, they were raided because they were suspected for running illegal copies of Windows.

You can be running Linux and still be a piracy suspect and sadly the only way to prove yourself innocent is to have your computers seized.


This is why Microsoft should have stepped in. But clearly they've always been more motivated by money than customer experience.

Reply Parent Score: 5