The proposed SOPA legislation sucks; there’s no two ways around it. Unfortunately, despite the fact that SOPA could break the Internets, many of the top business organizations around still support the ridiculous act. To show their displeasure, some of the big tech companies that are members of these organizations are taking their proverbial balls and going home. We’ve already reported that Google may quit the U.S. Chamber of Commerce due to the Chamber’s staunch SOPA support, and now Kapersky has announced that it is leaving the Business Software Alliance for the very same reason.
Almost half of the computer users in the world are criminals; no good, stinkin’ pirates who pilfer programs they don’t hold the proper licenses for. At least, that’s what the Business Software Alliance (a trade group whose entire purpose is stopping the use of pirated software) says after conducting a 15,000 user study in 32 countries. You’re probably a hypocrite, too – at least according to the BSA numbers.
The Business Software Alliance has an easy way to stimulate the economy, all the government has to do is curb software piracy. In a study titled "The Economic Benefits of Reducing Software Piracy," (PDF) the BSA contends that reducing the piracy rate for PC software by 10 percentage points -- or 2.5 points per year for four years -- would create $142 billion in new economic activity, generate $32 billion in new tax revenues, and create half a million new high-tech jobs by 2013.
"The impact of software piracy goes beyond revenues lost to the software industry, starving local software distributors and service providers of spending that creates jobs and generates much-needed tax revenues for governments around the world," the BSA writes in its report.
The BSA claims that curbing piracy would have the reverse effect, stimulating the entire IT economy. What's more, 80 percent of the benefits of cutting down on stolen PC software would accrue to local economies, and in some cases more than 90 percent, according to the study.
"I was aware that the BSA offers a financial payment but I never expected this much money," the whistleblower, only identified as a Microsoft certified IT Professional, was quoted as saying by the BSA. "This is definitely an extra motivation for other people like me, already frustrated by a management that thinks that they can get more with less."
This news comes on the heels of BSA's revelation that it settled with more than 1,000 companies in the first six months of 2010. It further said that these “settlements” helped it recoup £6.5 million in damages and licensing fees.