Linked by Thom Holwerda on Mon 13th Sep 2010 20:57 UTC
Microsoft Who said a public outcry - even if it's just on the internet - never helped anyone? Yesterday, we reported on The New York Times' findings that Microsoft lawyers were taking part in raids on opposition groups in Russia. Today, Microsoft has announced a number of steps to fix the situation - the most significant of which is a unilateral software license extended to all NGOs in Russia and several other countries.
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You completely misunderstand the point everyone is making. They are referring to the cost of donation not the cost of development. No where on Microsoft balance sheet will you see a $390 million dollar expense for software donations. The cost of donating those copies has nothing to do with the cost of developing the software or the retail pricing.


This is the first time that I can recall where Microsoft has got PR cred from even the EFF:
Fortunately, at this juncture, Microsoft has recognized this as an important human rights issue, and has responded responsibly and innovatively. The company plans to offer protection to advocacy groups and others who might be targeted for political reasons by issuing a blanket software license to advocacy groups and opposition newspapers in Russia and at least some other places in the world. The software license — which would allegedly be made easily and widely available — should help groups insulate themselves from political attacks and human rights violations clothed as accusations that Microsoft software has been stolen.

Not bad for a zero-cost-to-Microsoft "donation" from Microsoft.

No where on Microsoft balance sheet will you see a $390 million dollar expense for software donations.

Hmmm, I'd wonder about that. You might see it written down as a tax loss.

Edited 2010-09-16 03:36 UTC

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