The BSA "Safe" office environent

The BSA "Safe" office environent

Post by mlw » Wed, 13 Feb 2002 05:03:53



With all the draconian, orwellian tactics of the BSA, the Linux community
should come up with a BSA "Safe" HOWTO with Star Office, Gimp, and all the
others.

Everything from Accounting to zope. How to create a BSA immune office
environment.

What do you all think?

 
 
 

The BSA "Safe" office environent

Post by Kenneth Down » Wed, 13 Feb 2002 05:47:44



> With all the draconian, orwellian tactics of the BSA, the Linux community
> should come up with a BSA "Safe" HOWTO with Star Office, Gimp, and all the
> others.

> Everything from Accounting to zope. How to create a BSA immune office
> environment.

> What do you all think?

If you are volunteering to coordinate, I will help.

--
Ken
oSigBlock = createobject("sigblock")

 
 
 

The BSA "Safe" office environent

Post by Linon » Wed, 13 Feb 2002 14:35:16


After takin' a swig o' grog, mlw belched out this bit o' wisdom:

Quote:> With all the draconian, orwellian tactics of the BSA, the Linux community
> should come up with a BSA "Safe" HOWTO with Star Office, Gimp, and all the
> others.

> Everything from Accounting to zope. How to create a BSA immune office
> environment.

> What do you all think?

It would be good parody, and yet be somewhat useful, all at the same
time.

--
A day without some form of UNIX sucks

 
 
 

The BSA "Safe" office environent

Post by Mike » Wed, 13 Feb 2002 18:15:30



Quote:> With all the draconian, orwellian tactics of the BSA, the Linux community
> should come up with a BSA "Safe" HOWTO with Star Office, Gimp, and all the
> others.

> Everything from Accounting to zope. How to create a BSA immune office
> environment.

> What do you all think?

Do most companies worry much about the legal tactics of the BSA? The company
I work for has documentation for each computer, showing all the installed
software. We do all that because the consequences (the BSA folks) could be
pretty serious.

At the same time, it's a solved problem, and our IT guys don't spend alot of
time worrying about it. So, the "draconian and orwellian tactics" argument
isn't likely to make much of an impact.

-- Mike --

 
 
 

The BSA "Safe" office environent

Post by Craig Kelle » Wed, 13 Feb 2002 21:24:18



> With all the draconian, orwellian tactics of the BSA, the Linux community
> should come up with a BSA "Safe" HOWTO with Star Office, Gimp, and all the
> others.

> Everything from Accounting to zope. How to create a BSA immune office
> environment.

> What do you all think?

Excellent idea, and about time too.

With all this complaining about the BSA, the solution is obvious:
spend your money on the development of open source software instead.
If Lockheed Martin diverted all the money they spend on commercial
software into open source development, the problem would have gone
away a long time ago.  Certain companies (IBM, Compaq, HP, Sun, Intel)
are starting to see the light now.

--
It is financially more expensive to go to prison than to attend Harvard.


 
 
 

The BSA "Safe" office environent

Post by Terry Port » Thu, 14 Feb 2002 08:02:55


Mike went insane and wrote the following
on his bedroom wall with an old crayon:



>> With all the draconian, orwellian tactics of the BSA, the Linux community
>> should come up with a BSA "Safe" HOWTO with Star Office, Gimp, and all the
>> others.

>> Everything from Accounting to zope. How to create a BSA immune office
>> environment.

>> What do you all think?

>Do most companies worry much about the legal tactics of the BSA? The company
>I work for has documentation for each computer, showing all the installed
>software. We do all that because the consequences (the BSA folks) could be
>pretty serious.

Here is a post I saved a while back, where the poster felt quite differently
about this matter.

Quote:> > Several years ago one of my supposedly-minor duties was system
> > oversight for a company of about 50.  The license administration
> > was so hosed up that even though it was pretty obvious that we
> > had paid (retail no less) for every byte, *proving* it would
> > have taken weeks for several people and shut down much of the
> > office for days while we reinstalled from unique masters for
> > each machine.  It just wasn't worth it -- I finally advised the
> > Management to just bend over and get a license pack.

--
Kind Regards from Terry
My Desktop is powered by GNU/Linux. Debian 2.2 kernel 2.2.20  
Free Micro burner: http://w3w.arafuraconnect.com.au/~tp/burn.html          
** Registration Number: 103931,  http://counter.li.org **
 
 
 

The BSA "Safe" office environent

Post by Mark Ke » Thu, 14 Feb 2002 20:02:55



Quote:>With all the draconian, orwellian tactics of the BSA, the Linux community
>should come up with a BSA "Safe" HOWTO with Star Office, Gimp, and all the
>others.

>Everything from Accounting to zope. How to create a BSA immune office
>environment.

>What do you all think?

That is an excellent idea.

--
Mark Kent
                                               Take out the ham to mail me.

 
 
 

The BSA "Safe" office environent

Post by T. Max Devli » Sat, 16 Feb 2002 02:15:15


In comp.os.linux.advocacy, I heard Mike say:



>> With all the draconian, orwellian tactics of the BSA, the Linux community
>> should come up with a BSA "Safe" HOWTO with Star Office, Gimp, and all the
>> others.

>> Everything from Accounting to zope. How to create a BSA immune office
>> environment.

>> What do you all think?

>Do most companies worry much about the legal tactics of the BSA?

An interesting question.

Quote:>The company
>I work for has documentation for each computer, showing all the installed
>software. We do all that because the consequences (the BSA folks) could be
>pretty serious.

So the answer is "yes", obviously.  ;-)

Quote:>At the same time, it's a solved problem, and our IT guys don't spend alot of
>time worrying about it.

Guffaw.  Your experience is idealistic, let's say.

Quote:>So, the "draconian and orwellian tactics" argument
>isn't likely to make much of an impact.

One has to question the validity of your proclamations of working for a fully
documented company.  AFAIK, such a thing only exists in a mythical world.
Though certainly it goes without saying that your company is pretty much all
monopoly crapware, I'd bet.  Companies not under the thumb of Microsoft are
more concerned with purchasing the right software rather than proving they
have done so.

--
T. Max Devlin
  *** The best way to convince another is
          to state your case moderately and
             accurately.   - Benjamin Franklin ***

 
 
 

The BSA "Safe" office environent

Post by <twil.. » Tue, 19 Feb 2002 06:15:47



> Everything from Accounting to zope. How to create a BSA immune office
> environment.

> What do you all think?

Since when have the Boy Scouts of America been infecting offices and how
would zope wielding accountants be an effective defense?

Or, have I got this all wrong... <g>

--
Tom Wilson
Registration #194021 - http://counter.li.org

 
 
 

The BSA "Safe" office environent

Post by Darre » Tue, 19 Feb 2002 07:09:34




>> Everything from Accounting to zope. How to create a BSA immune office
>> environment.

>> What do you all think?

> Since when have the Boy Scouts of America been infecting offices and how
> would zope wielding accountants be an effective defense?

> Or, have I got this all wrong... <g>

No.. you've got the basic idea all right ..
 
 
 

The BSA "Safe" office environent

Post by mjcr » Thu, 21 Feb 2002 00:46:28



on Tue, 12 Feb 2002 at 03:47 GMT,



>> With all the draconian, orwellian tactics of the BSA, the Linux community
>> should come up with a BSA "Safe" HOWTO with Star Office, Gimp, and all the
>> others.

>> Everything from Accounting to zope. How to create a BSA immune office
>> environment.

>> What do you all think?

> If you are volunteering to coordinate, I will help.

If I can be of assistance, count me in.

--
I run Linux, no *y RedHat, Debian, Slackware, or Corel, just Linux.
May all that you wish upon me and mine be visited upon you ten fold.

 
 
 

The BSA "Safe" office environent

Post by Martha H Ada » Sun, 03 Mar 2002 16:21:26


I came across an interesting piece on the BSA (Business Software
Alliance) in the current issue of Computer User (February).

Computer User: see www.computeruser.com, James Matheson, editor.

The piece is Brian O'Connell, Compliance Stormtroopers at the Gates,
small businesses beware, the Business Software Alliance may be
stalking you.  Starts on p.10.  I think anyone operating a business,
especially a small business, wants to find this piece and read it.

My first response to it is, BSA works just like the IRS.  You have
about the same options to protect yourself.  As I read the thing, BSA
must be a well-connected arm of Microsoft, masquerading under another
name.  At least, their style and mission seem a perfect fit to it.

O'Connell's piece seems to say either you're renting or buying your
(closed-source) software or you're a pirate.  It does not mention any
other options such as Linux and the software available to Linux users.
But in fact, for anyone in the know, I can't imagine a more convincing
argument for whoever relies upon computer technology, to distance
themselves immediately and completely from closed-source, the BSA, and
Microsoft.

Meanwhile, Microsoft's "improved" XP comes with that registration
scheme, "for the user's convenience."  I see things differently.  I
think among serious computer users, those who rely upon computers for
their business or even (in medical service) to stay alive, closed
source can only be too buggy, too unreliable, for such service.  Even
without the BSA breaking into their systems to monitor for "piracy."
Microsoft's registration scheme attempts to force users into software
that *can't stand on its own in a real market.*

Can you imagine a better reason to change your home and business
systems to a Microsoft Free Zone?  Namely, Linux?  *Now?*  Of course,
that will cost, a little.  But then you are free of your closed-source
licensing, fees, controls, and bugs.  What's the worth of that, even
if you don't reckon in the BSA, compared to the cost?

Mathewson's editorial in the same issue takes a slight but detectably
less severe line than does O'Connell, but also doesn't mention Linux.

Cheers -- Martha Adams

 
 
 

The BSA "Safe" office environent

Post by Kenneth Down » Sun, 03 Mar 2002 18:21:23



> I came across an interesting piece on the BSA (Business Software
> Alliance) in the current issue of Computer User (February).

> Computer User: see www.computeruser.com, James Matheson, editor.

> The piece is Brian O'Connell, Compliance Stormtroopers at the Gates,
> small businesses beware, the Business Software Alliance may be
> stalking you.  Starts on p.10.  I think anyone operating a business,
> especially a small business, wants to find this piece and read it.

> My first response to it is, BSA works just like the IRS.  

Probably true, in that, you only have a 1% chance of being audited, but the
consequences of an audit if you have something to hide are not supposed to
be worth even that 1% chance.

Quote:> You have
> about the same options to protect yourself.  As I read the thing, BSA
> must be a well-connected arm of Microsoft, masquerading under another
> name.  At least, their style and mission seem a perfect fit to it.

Nobody I know has ever obtained any copy of commercial software, legally or
otherwise, without knowing that the vendor expects to be paid.

Piracy of Microsoft software is absolutely rampant.  Anybody has the option
not to use their products, though M$ makes it as difficult as possible to
exercise that option.  Nevertheless, that option does exist.

I have seen companies where dozens or hundreds of PC's were running
massively pirated M$ products, with full knowledge of what they were doing
and deliberate intent to do so.  I was once told by the VP/IT of one
company that he estimated they were pirating $175,000 worth of software,
mostly from Microsoft.

Given that most piracy is done knowingly and deliberately, it is difficult
to condemn Microsoft for attempting to recover what they legally are
entitled to.

Now, whether or not the BSA's tactics are legit, or the software is worth
paying for, is a problem that completely evaporates when you go to Linux.

Quote:

> O'Connell's piece seems to say either you're renting or buying your
> (closed-source) software or you're a pirate.  It does not mention any
> other options such as Linux and the software available to Linux users.

Sad ommission.  

Quote:> But in fact, for anyone in the know, I can't imagine a more convincing
> argument for whoever relies upon computer technology, to distance
> themselves immediately and completely from closed-source, the BSA, and
> Microsoft.

Well said.  Hurrah.  Richard Stallman looked at the way people copied
software 15 years ago and decided there was "something there is that
doesn't love a EULA" (apologies to Robert Frost).  So many people copy so
much software so much of the time that it caused him to ask why?  And he
concluded simply that that is the nature of software.

The FSF's full position is something like this.  Software was meant to be
freely distributed and copied.  Closed-source commercial software is
counter-intuitive.  People simply do not respect the vendor's rights if
they don't have to.  So he decided to write free software and protect it
under a license that would make it always free.

And for his efforts, and thousands upon thousands of other anonymous
heroes, we now have a tremendously powerful operating system, loads of
applications, tools, and supporting community.

The only reason now to stay with commercial software is because you simply
want to.  If the entire thing does not sit right with you, you can do
anything you want with free software.

Quote:

> Meanwhile, Microsoft's "improved" XP comes with that registration
> scheme, "for the user's convenience."  I see things differently.  I
> think among serious computer users, those who rely upon computers for
> their business or even (in medical service) to stay alive, closed
> source can only be too buggy, too unreliable, for such service.  Even
> without the BSA breaking into their systems to monitor for "piracy."
> Microsoft's registration scheme attempts to force users into software
> that *can't stand on its own in a real market.*

Extremely well said.  Microsoft themselves were the first to release
software with all traditional copy protection removed.  Remember Lotus 123
Release 1, that required the original "key" floppy to be in the drive just
to run it?  Remember dongles?  

Microsoft gave us systems with no copy protection of any kind, or so we
thought.  We've now learned they were tracking more than anyone knew.  And
everyone copied them.  

One wonders if Microsoft products could have taken over the world as they
did if M$ had demanded payment for every single running copy.

Quote:

> Can you imagine a better reason to change your home and business
> systems to a Microsoft Free Zone?  Namely, Linux?  *Now?*  Of course,
> that will cost, a little.  But then you are free of your closed-source
> licensing, fees, controls, and bugs.  What's the worth of that, even
> if you don't reckon in the BSA, compared to the cost?

One of Linux's greatest strengths is that it is not freeware, shareware, or
trialware.  It is free, via the GPL, in a way that most people are not
aware of and have a very hard time understanding.

Try explaining the GPL to someone who has never heard of it.  The most
common reaction I get is disbelief and tremendous curiousity.  They
intensely want to know "how can this be?"  "What's the catch?"  "how does
it work?"   With GPL'd software there is no catch, it really is what it
claims to be: free-to-use as you wish.  

The number one question I get when I explain the GPL to someone who has
never heard of it is, "What's to stop someone from buying this Red Hat
company or whoever they are and just closing it up?"  Although anyone with
funds could buy Red Hat, Red Hat does not control Linux, so it would be an
empty purchase.

Linux truly eliminates the entire licensing nightmare from your life,
forever.  

Quote:

> Mathewson's editorial in the same issue takes a slight but detectably
> less severe line than does O'Connell, but also doesn't mention Linux.

> Cheers -- Martha Adams

--
Ken
Linux, the more you learn, the more you love
 
 
 

The BSA "Safe" office environent

Post by T. Max Devli » Mon, 04 Mar 2002 06:05:54


In comp.os.linux.advocacy, I heard Kenneth Downs say:


   [...]
>Piracy of Microsoft software is absolutely rampant.  Anybody has the option
>not to use their products, though M$ makes it as difficult as possible to
>exercise that option.  Nevertheless, that option does exist.

Nevertheless, MS's attempts to make it difficult invalidates their license
rather thoroughly according to the law.  Unlicensed use of MS products is not
a crime.  At most, it is a civil suit, and MS is free to sue you.  That isn't
good enough for them, though,  thus the BSA stormtrooper/FUD tactics.

Quote:>I have seen companies where dozens or hundreds of PC's were running
>massively pirated M$ products, with full knowledge of what they were doing
>and deliberate intent to do so.  I was once told by the VP/IT of one
>company that he estimated they were pirating $175,000 worth of software,
>mostly from Microsoft.

>Given that most piracy is done knowingly and deliberately, it is difficult
>to condemn Microsoft for attempting to recover what they legally are
>entitled to.

Given that most unlicensed use of software is *not* piracy (your example
*might* qualify, but the term really only applies to selling unlicensed
software, not simply using it, though the efforts of the BSA have made this
position difficult for most people to believe), it is not as cut-and-dried as
you may presume whether MS is "legally entitled" to extracting exorbitant
profits.

--
T. Max Devlin
  *** The best way to convince another is
          to state your case moderately and
             accurately.   - Benjamin Franklin ***