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Software Piracy

Crime?

Victimless?

Punishment?

Misinformation?

Who Has The Final Word?

"THE POLICE"?

INSIDER STORIES

"THE REBELS"?

Chief Inspector Absolutely loaded with info if you want to be legal; how piracy can hurt you & your computer; how to buy genuine software.

Workin' 8 to 5 16 straightforward Q's & A's on job use of software; "It's only a few copies!"; "I'm new, is the ex-employee's software legal?"; "Me squeal?"

The Watchdog Truce dates when the dog ain't biting (get fully licensed without penalty); downloadable tool to identify & detect pirated software; report piracy.

Takin' Care of Business Key piracy terms; the law's do's & don'ts; how to keep a business legal (includes a sample policy statement).

Brains Short and to the point; nails down applying the copyright law; Q's & A's on what can and cannot be done.

Seedy Stuff In-depth, 3-part series; tackles "Police" & "Rebels"; balanced interviews and background info.

Go Anywhere, Steal Anything Booming piracy on the Internet; fun & profit of it; industry losses may be exaggerated.

Online Auctions Can you trust what's out there? Low prices but is it pirated?

Open Source Letters from VIPs who support open source or proprietary software models; alternative ways of thinking about piracy.

Stuff the Duck Become an expert quick; comprehensive and detailed whirlwind tour. 

Real Pirates Anti-government & big software monopolies; fallacy of lost revenue & jobs; irreverent style.

Asian Connection Economic necessity; databases for $25; bribery.

Steal This! Amazing scoop & dirt on tech insiders who pirate for pride.

Rings of Thieves Organized and unusual bedfellows.

Belly to Belly Nitty gritty of the pirate life.

POINT: Software companies are in business to make money.   They supply you and me with products and services that are revolutionizing the way we live.  Large-scale counterfeiting operations, unauthorized resellers and friends loaning disks to friends or copying software from work or school for personal use are all considered in violation of copyright laws in the USA.  That's part of the legal problem.  Penalties can be 5 years in prison and/or a $250,000 fine.  The economic facts are in multiplied billions of dollars lost every year in company revenue, taxes, and potential wages that could be in your area directly or indirectly.  The quality factor is that software, even if you think that it came through a legitimate reseller or website could be infected with viruses that may damage your computer.   Further, pirated software does not provide you with access to upgrades or innovations.  Read your end-user license agreement about what are the legal limitations of copying that product and get acquainted with how to identify your software as real.  Protect yourself. COUNTERPOINT: I'm really sorry that the rich geeks at the big software companies don't like "illegal" use of their overpriced products.  If software were more affordable for the average buyer, most would buy their own.  If they are so concerned about software piracy, why don't they take some of their billions and make it impossible to copy?  What about lost jobs and those wonderful taxes we pay?  Governments get too much of our money anyway and there are other employers besides those in computers you know!  Oh, yes, those viruses you can get if you use pirated software?  Haven't they ever heard of virus protection software that is updated all of the time?  Let's not forget about missing out on upgrades, innovations and let me add to that list, technical support.  Ever try to talk with a "tech support" person when you really need help?  Forget it!  They're "gone with the wind"!  Upgrades can be bought with pooled money among friends and family and then copies made (thank you) for everyone.  Or, you can just go to a free website or auction and get it at a decent (read it, fair) price.  What about the copyright violations?  It's like the speed limit!  You go at the speed you think is right for you.  Nearly everybody drives this way without being reckless and you know it.  Don't worry!  There will always be enough people who do not mind paying full price for every copy at home or the office.  They'll keep the software companies rolling in the money.

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An idea from d.brown