The Business Software Alliance Claims PC Users Are Ignorant Thieves And Hypocrites

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iheartpcs

If I didn't pirate Win 7, I certainly wouldn't pay for it, I would use Ubuntu. So how can they say they are losing money from me pirating?

 

In fact, because I use win 7, and love it, I tell others to BUY it and use it. So my pirating is actually making more money for MS.

 

 

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bling581

I hate these articles when they throw out ridiculous numbers of lost revenue due to piracy. It's impossible to calculate but there's a large percentage of pirated software that people would never have paid money for period. If they would never have purchased the software to begin with then how can they count it as lost revenue?

One major issue I have with software is the price of "professional" programs. Even student versions of programs like 3DS Max or the Adobe series cost hundreds of dollars per title. Most student versions can't even be obtained without a student ID. This makes it very difficult for people who wish to learn a program at their own leisure or stay up to date with software after graduation.

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Architek9

Open source all the way I'm running ubuntu 10.04 with all open free software

These dinosaurs need to adapt or die and quit crying about a few people getting free(usuaslly less than perfect) copies of their software.

Jay-z and microsoft arent going to be hurt by the fact some people got free versions of their content online

 

and you know what I pirate and torrent every day just for the principle of it i torrent windows 7 every day and burn it to discs and just hand them out

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szore

I pirate software on a regular basis.

 

If any of you don't like it, kiss my white A$$.

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Caboose

Well aren't you just all kinds of cool then! </sarcasm>

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RaptorJohnson

Careful Caboose, he might be one of those Internet Tought Guys.  Best watch what you say around him.

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Svetty Parabols

These software companies only lose what they think they are going to make, not actual losses. As long as they retain a master copy of the software, they haven't lost anything. Piracy is the biggest bag of bullshit to come from the invention of the internet. Think of the millions of copies of Windows OS that have been downloaded. Microsoft is certainly not hurting for money. The same with Adobe and others. I agree with the others that have said the BSA is nothing more than the software version of those scumbag assholes the RIAA and MPAA. They recoupe nothing for the actual artist or designers and keep making money for themselves. You people that believe otherwise need to open your eyes and learn the facts.

That being said, the only real argument about piracy is a moral one. Do you take and use something that is not yours?

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scoop6274

I seriously dislike pirated software. I honestly think pirating is wrong. Here's why, it is someones property. Imagine for a moment you created a piece of art. Being an artist was your livelyhood. Now you've got a picture that has become very popular. Would you want everyone and their brother to just be able to download it for free? I don't think so. How do you feed your kids? How do you pay your rent? Obviously you would charge what you thought was a fair price. So how would you feel about all those people just downloading it because they want it but don't want to pay for it?

Now, is software in most cases outtrageously priceed and out of the relm of the average user. HELL YES! I will never own Photoshop, Lightroom or the like. I don't have that kind of cash to throw around. The only reason I have copies of Office 2007 or Windows 7 is because of beta testing, and getting them for free from Microsoft through feedback programs and hosting launch parties. Otherwise, LibreOffice would be my go to office suite, and OpenOffice was for years before. I was a huge proponent for OpenOffice, and recommended it to everyone who was looking for an office suite. I still recommend LibreOffice, Gimp, MSE, Malwarebytes(free), Superantispyware(free), VLC and many other freeware programs to those in need of solutions. Often times I prefer the free version. It usually gives me more flexibility. Instead of pirating (which just shows software companies their product is in demand) use free alternatives. And we as power users in the know, need to share as much of our knowledge as possible about free alternatives.

Don't just recommend the program, show it to them on your computer. Show them the things it can do. Show them the value. This is the approach I take when showing someone linux. I show it to them on my computer. I ask them what they want to do, and then show them how I can do it on linux. So far, the only stumbling block I have encountered is netflix (the casual user isn't willing to set up a VM). But WINE is so easy now for many programs people want to carry over from Windows, it's a couple of clicks and you're ready to go.

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Eoraptor

You know, I installed the beta of Ubuntu 11.10 last night. I was shocked by how much polish it shows even in the fine details that most people would never see, like the "advanced" section of an update screen. say what you want to about its interface, but you can't deny the sheer level of polish and finess that exists in it. That's a free operating system. Compare that to Windows 7, which, while a fine operating system itself, costs AT LEAST $100 US for an installed license, and does not honestly offer much that is particularly compelling over ubuntu? And that's if you know how to buy an OEM license. the average schmuck is going to pony out $250 or more to get that operating system with the pretty little piece of holographic numbered cardboard.

And then on. My uncle runs a small theater in Columbia, MO. and he NEEDED to set up a website for it. Have you seen the price tag on a Copy of CS? Considering HTML 4 and XHTML has not changed in over a decade, and thus the underpinning programs such as Fireworks, Dreamweaver, and so on have only changed cosmetically or in operating system compatibility in the same time span, where do they get the cojones to charge $300 or more per component?

Piracy is a crime of complex motivations, but casual piracy or societal piracy is usually a response to skewed price pressures. Just look at the "pirate coves" of the past. To a number, they were in response to taxed, embargoed, or otherwise inaccessable goods. When the tax or embargo went away and prices returned to a justifiable level, the pirate coves dissapeared and only the hard core criminals persisted. (another prime example being alcohol prohibition in the twenties and thirties Vs Moonshiners and Rum Runners and the mob)

I had no problem paying fifty bucks for Allaire Homesite in 1997. But Adobe Dreameweaver CS5 for $300?!  Considering it essentially IS Allaire homesite from fifteen years ago with a snazzy interface and windows XP+ compatibility? A six fold increase for a program that is fundamentally unchanged? Yeah, it's hard to find a qualm with feeling jusitified in being a modern day pirate.

Seriously, just in the US, there's at least fifty million computers running Windows. (of one form or another spanning 98-v7) If we throw the conservative pricing of $99 per OEM license onto each of those OS's, We come to 4.9 Billion dollars. I don't think it cost Bill that much to churn out XP and Vista combined before he left.

 

but you'll notice that the article cited does not attempt to identify motivations for piracy, because then they'd be forced to admit "gee, maybe if we didn't ask for the first born male offspring of our customers for something it only cost us a few thousand/million dollars to develop, they might not be so apt to go steal it." But I'll stop before I REALLY start to ramble.

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MrBlueCheese

"say what you want to about its interface, but you can't deny the sheer level of polish and finess that exists in it. That's a free operating system."

Free for the end user, but for the people who made it...

"Compare that to Windows 7, which, while a fine operating system itself, costs AT LEAST $100 US for an installed license, and does not honestly offer much that is particularly compelling over ubuntu?"

Ubuntu has been catching up there with Windows, but Windows is the king when it comes to supporting products. Also, more people are familiar with Windows then any other OS out there. I've grown up with Mac' in the school system, used PCs at home, but never dabbled with Linux until college.

"LEAST $100 US for an installed license, and does not honestly offer much that is particularly compelling over ubuntu? And that's if you know how to buy an OEM license. the average schmuck is going to pony out $250 or more to get that operating system with the pretty little piece of holographic numbered cardboard."

Like any good PC user, you would upgrade your OS regularly, in order to save on licensing costs. Upgrade versions of a Window's OS is a whole lot cheaper then shelling out a huge amount for a complete license.

"Considering HTML 4 and XHTML has not changed in over a decade, and thus the underpinning programs such as Fireworks, Dreamweaver, and so on have only changed cosmetically or in operating system compatibility in the same time span, where do they get the cojones to charge $300 or more per component?"

HTML 4 has no "official" standard and XHTML is not where these products are focusing on. XHTML is the "old" standard, while (at least for Microsoft) is a shift to XML (mixed in with XHTML). , and it hasn't been around around for 10 years, so idk what your talking about. Also don't get the "cosmetically, nothing has changed" because HTML code has changed a lot over that time period.

"I had no problem paying fifty bucks for Allaire Homesite in 1997. But Adobe Dreameweaver CS5 for $300?!"

Actually, $300 bucks is quite cheap, considering that the cost of things usually double every ten years, and the rate of inflation has icreased over that time period as well.

"Seriously, just in the US, there's at least fifty million computers running Windows. (of one form or another spanning 98-v7) If we throw the conservative pricing of $99 per OEM license onto each of those OS's, We come to 4.9 Billion dollars. I don't think it cost Bill that much to churn out XP and Vista combined before he left."

Considering that we are talking about hiring a ton of programmers who earn top dollar and have great benifits at Microsoft, and also considering that Microsoft is a business, what does it matter how much they earn? All of Bill Gate's Wealth is going to be donated to his charity (Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation) once he dies.

"but you'll notice that the article cited does not attempt to identify motivations for piracy, because then they'd be forced to admit "gee, maybe if we didn't ask for the first born male offspring of our customers for something it only cost us a few thousand/million dollars to develop, they might not be so apt to go steal it." But I'll stop before I REALLY start to ramble."

Really? Your telling me that a corporation is going to spend only a "few thousand/million dollars to develop" when they have to pay their  1,000's of workers (which are some of the best compensated in the industry) benifits, vacation time, etc? I think the problem lays with the fact lays with the people themselves. My best friend's sister thinks it is perfectly ok to download music for free, and if she doesn't like the artist, then who cares? Don't like Justin Bieber, pirate the heck out of it is her philosophy. However, if the band is "Death Cab for Cutie" then don't do it. I think the problem is that our actions have unintended concequences.

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Nimrod

I like most users have never pirated a program i would have ever otherwise bought. The real temptation is not in the fact that its free. Its after the fact that you decide something isnt worth your money. The idea of being able to try it out anyway is hard to resist.

And just like the other study found, i like most pirates generally pirate about as much content as i actually pay for.

 

And yeah, i might just DL screeners of crappy movies and burn copies of them for my friends for no other reason than to make the RIAA /rage more. Because quite frankly, if their going to act like trollbait, im going to troll them.

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Holly Golightly

This actually sort of seems true. I do know a lawfirm in the Ukraine that uses pirated software. Problem is, some software is outrageously priced. Photoshop being $1k+, MS Office Ultimate which is like $500, and it does not stop there. To buy each license for each and every single computer in a firm for each employee, must drive the company out of business. Insanity is what it is.

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MrBlueCheese

I'm not familiar with the Ukraine side of business (in accordance to Microsoft) but there are benefits of contacting a Business Consultant. Microsoft (and many places) have them on staff (not sure if Microsoft has an office in the Ukraine) but what they get is "bulk licensing" which includes other benefits like: Software Assurance (if a product is "upgraded" (Office 2007 to Office 2010 for example) then the new product is free of charge), Open Value Subscription (the amount of licenses can fluctuate every year, depending on the organization's needs), Open License (use the software immediately, then pay over time), lower prices per license, and many others (depending on the organization's size).

If i were them, i would seriously consider looking into this. It may not be the same as "pirated software" but it would be one less skeleton in the closet (along with the other company's secrets).

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Holly Golightly

Oh, I am not sure. They are small compared to other firms out there. They are handing out incetives over there too. But they are small in size compared to some international firms out there. I am not sure they could even pay for the set bulk packages... I really am unsure how this works. They are no Baker and McKenzie, but they have been on TV several times. So I am not sure if they can or can not afford the bulk. I usually like to see things from a small business perspective.

As for the free upgrades, I have never seen that happen. Heck, most of the jobs I worked out are STILL using MS Office 2003 on Windows XP. Although there has been some talk, but I am sure there was a reason why these corporate firms have not upgraded. Be prices, compatability or security. I mean, 10 years is such a long time to not upgrade. Firms try to save money as many ways as possible.

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Slugbait

The real eye-opener I noticed in the article is that China plummeted to 86%.

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Gezzer

I guess like a lot of people I used to pirate software, but have since moved on to Open Source and/or Freeware.

Of the programs I did pirate I only really used AV and burning suites a lot. Now the stuff for sale is so bloated and major system hogs that it's a total PITA. Most OS and Freeware are light footprint, easy to use programs, that do what you need them to do and no more.

I had a buddy at work ask me to track down PS Essentials for him and I suggested he check out Gimp. He said sure, but the next day told me with a beeming face how he'd found PSE and didn't need to try Gimp. Poor SOB doesn't know what he's missing other then the maleware infections he comes down with ever 6 months or so. lol

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Biceps

So, I admit that I rarely pay for software.  However, I do NOT pirate software or download illegally.  I use a lot of freeware.  OpenOffice, GIMP, VLC player, copious Chrome Apps for just about anything conceivable.... the only software I spend money on now are games.

I am just pointing out that just because someone 'rarely' pays for software doesn't mean they are stealing it.  And the BSA are a bunch of douchebag vampire lawyers who should be drug out into the street and kicked in the nuts repeatedly by a large group of children. :)

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aarcane

in agreement with everyone else, $59 Billion is highly inflated.  For every program I've ever used in the past without license I wouldn't have if there had been a suitable alternative, and now there is for most of them.

Being twelve is bad for piracy, but at the same time, being twelve you can't agree to the EULA anyway, so it's moot.  I remember being twelve I had 0 income, but had a need of applications to do things.  downloading an application was an easy way to obtain it, but if my choice was pay for it or don't use it at all, I would have had to chose not to use it at all.

Being an adult now, my decision making process is similar.  I can't afford adobe suite.  when I needed it, I downloaded the trial, used it for a few days to do what I needed to do, then rolled back to a restore point before I installed ( so I can use the trial again later, if I ever need to).  I have an ass-ton of microsoft software that I paid zilch for.  All my systems have one type of license or another.  I have slic certificates on most of my portables, and my desktops have paper certificates sitting in the CD cases over yonder.  I purchased Office 2007 on the Ultimate Steal, and got a few copies of 7 and a few 2010 suite apps and Visual Studio from MSDNAA because I'm a student.  I seldom use any of that stuff though.  I do most of my development in Eclipse, and most of my web stuff too.  I have Linux running on all my servers (though I may eventually throw 2010 on a VM for AD integration with windows 7, but samba is sufficient for now).  I can't list a program on any of my systems that isn't legitimate, though I wouldn't assert that there are none, as I have a poor memory I've probably overlooked something small.  I didn't pay for most of it.  I have norton free through comcast, I've already covered all the microsoft apps, and the rest is open source.

If I had to purchase any software, I'd find the cheapest or closest to free alternative I could, and if I didn't need it, I'd find a damn good free alternative.  I sure as hell wouldn't give adobe $2600, I'd go through the academic channels (even if I had to reenroll for a semester at my local CC.  I can always use some personal enrichment) and pay half that.

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West996

The catch 22 is that legit software is out rageously priced for the average user. Who is going to pay $500 for photoshop? Even $150 for an opporating system is hefty.

If you could buy a copy of windows for about the price of a game, 40-50 I think more people would buy them just to have a legit copy. When you go into the store and see the $150 - $300 price tag just for your OS you start asking around for alternatives and before you know it one of your buddies hands you a burned copy.

The flip side of that is that I'm sure part of the reason software prices are so inflated is because they have to compensate for how many people they know will just pirate it anyway. Its like the welfare system, people that actually spend the money on it are also buying it for those who will pirate it.

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damicatz

The BSA is nothing but a racket. They shake down small businesses, often over completely fictitious allegations.  They rely on the fact that most small businesses cannot afford the lawyers needed to fight them.  Never, under any circumstances, sign any agreement with the BSA or agree to an audit by them.  The BSA's definition of unlicensed software includes things like software that was legally purchased on eBay.  In addition, a BSA audit is a guilty until proven innocent system.

If software "piracy" was ended, the BSA would go out of business.  They would no longer have anyone to sue and make money off of. 

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Captain_Steve

I think much of the piracy is simply the fact that people don't know that 90% of software has a free version. People pirate PS because they don't know about GIMP; people pirate Nortan because they don't know about AVG or Anti-Vir. Heck, since I discovered Steam and the amazing sales they have, I don't even have to pirate games like when I was 12 (though having an income also helps with that).

 

TL;DR version: People think they need some of that software because they didn't know there was an option.

 

Also; if one more person asks me if they can get the Yahoo and Google on Firefox, I'm shanking someone.

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mattman059

SO...you never answered the question...CAN you get Yahoo and Google on Firefox?

:lolface: 

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TerribleToaster

Do you know if I can get Bing on Firefox?

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Captain_Steve

Don't know; never been there outside of Opera.

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CaptainFabulous

Actually the BSA is an extortion-based group that relies upon disgrunted workers to rat out their current or former employers. They are no different from the MPAA or RIAA, often going after completely innocent companies that cannot afford a protracted legal battle and simply pay up.

Short version: they're fucking scumbags.

And yeah, I'm a card-carrying software pirate. Come and get me BSA.

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stradric

This is such flawed reasoning that it completely deligitimizes the BSA's efforts.  There's nothing scientific about this, and it suffers tremendously from confirmation bias.  For example, saying that $59 billion was lost assumes that everyone who downloaded pirated software would have purchased it if it wasn't available in the black market.  In other words, would the average consumer pay $500 for photoshop or just learn how to use GIMP instead?

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Trooper_One

I've always thought about the the same thing.  If there's some magical way that software can employ some magical encryption that 100% hack proof and everyone is forced to pay for software they want to use, I highly doubt that the number of sales would be at $59 Billion.  The actual sale will be much less.  One simple fact is that people just can't afford it or buy brand new software every year.

The same goes with music, video, books, etc...

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