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."
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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

lemur2 Member since:
2007-02-17

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.


In the face of protests from the accused, this is not a PR-credible act for a government ... at the very least it is considerably less credible than the case where the accused admit to be using commercial software.

It is quite possible (you could even go so far as to say easy) to run a perfectly clean "no piracy" shop using freedom software, but it is actually a bit of a task to ensure your operation is 100% copyright compliant when you are running commercial software on multiple machines.

Edited 2010-09-13 13:09 UTC

Reply Parent Score: 2

Thom_Holwerda Member since:
2005-06-29

In the face of protests from the accused, this is not a PR-credible act for a government ... at the very least it is considerably less credible than the case where the accused admit to be using commercial software.


We're talking about Russia. Russia is pretty much a dictatorship at this point. If even in the US large corporations control the legal agenda, how do you think Russia is going to be?

Russia's government doesn't need to worry about PR because they control most of the media, and use fear as a means to silence the rest.

Reply Parent Score: 2

Laurence Member since:
2007-03-26

In the face of protests from the accused, this is not a PR-credible act for a government ... at the very least it is considerably less credible than the case where the accused admit to be using commercial software.


Somehow I don't think the Russian government has much to worry about when it comes to PR. ;)

Edited 2010-09-13 14:04 UTC

Reply Parent Score: 4