SIIA's Bogus Bounty For Turning In Software Counterfeiters: Read The Fine Print

from the good-luck-with-that dept

We've already talked about the BSA's misleading program to get people to turn in their employers for using unauthorized copies of software. Now, sister organization, SIIA, has introduced its own silly program. Reader Jon writes in to let us know that the SIIA is supposedly offering $500 to anyone who "turns in" someone who sold them counterfeit software online. While the SIIA says it hopes that the recipient of the $500 uses it to buy legitimate copies of the software, they don't have to. At first glance, this program looks like it creates a system that gives people incentives to buy counterfeit software. After all, why not buy the counterfeit software, collect the reward and pocket it, while keeping the software? However, if you read the fine print, you'll realize that the program is quite limited. It's not really $500. It's "up to" $500, apparently at the SIIA's sole discretion. And... it's only open to the first 100 people who qualify. And... they'll get to use your name in press releases and force you to post feedback on eBay about how the seller sold you counterfeit software. And... it doesn't appear that you get any amnesty for having the software, meaning you could eventually be liable yourself for using counterfeit software (though, you have to give up the software to the SIIA, but if you installed it first...). Then, there's the best part. If the SIIA winds up in a court case with whoever you turn it, you may be required to testify -- and (wait for it...) the SIIA may reimburse your expenses, but if they do, those expenses will be reduced by the amount the SIIA paid as a reward. In other words, the "reward" simply becomes a prepayment on just some of the expenses you incur to testify on the SIIA's behalf. How nice of them.


Reader Comments (rss)

(Flattened / Threaded)

  1.  
    identicon
    Alfred E. Neuman, Dec 21st, 2007 @ 8:43am

    Wow, that sounds like a really good deal.

    This sort of humor may already be patented. Do I get a reward for turning them in?

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  2.  
    identicon
    TheDock22, Dec 21st, 2007 @ 9:01am

    You know...

    Most people won't read the fine print before enrolling in the program. I can't wait to see the lawsuits against SIIA for this one.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  3.  
    identicon
    Chuck Norris' Enemy (deceased), Dec 21st, 2007 @ 9:05am

    A Challenge

    Techdirt,
    Will you also match this reward as you will match BSA's reward if it is ever given? Of course, I have no idea how you would match SIIA's proposal, but you'll think of something.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  4.  
    identicon
    Max Powers, Dec 21st, 2007 @ 9:37am

    Casting Call

    This seems like it's their way of finding a few people that they can use for a marketing campaign.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  5.  
    identicon
    Thom, Dec 21st, 2007 @ 9:48am

    Haha

    I read of this moments after it appeared as a topic on Slashdot. Plainly obvious in the sentence describing the bounty was "up to" so I started to comment and make fun, but I thought to gave the terms a cursory glance first. I made as far as the part about the first 100 people before I quit and passed on commenting because I assumed nearly everyone would be pointing these obvious things out.

    Imagine my surprise when I returned hours later to find that of the hundreds of comments only two people had noticed the "up to" and maybe one had read the further terms. Everyone else was busy planning on how they'd spend their $500.

    Jeeze Slashdot-ers, could you possibly be a bigger bunch of morons? I bet even the digg users picked up on the "up to". No wonder the SIIA felt they could include such rediculous terms.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  6.  
    identicon
    James, Dec 21st, 2007 @ 11:11am

    HAHAHAHA!!

    Anyone who helps these a-holes gets exactly what they deserve.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  7.  
    identicon
    Hey, Dec 21st, 2007 @ 2:06pm

    Re: Haha

    Angry Dude, is that you?

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  8.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Dec 23rd, 2007 @ 10:09am

    Re: Re: Haha

    Angry Dude, is that you?
    Angry Dude would be on the SIIA's side. He's all for this kind of stuff.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  9.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Dec 23rd, 2007 @ 10:10am

    Re: HAHAHAHA!!

    Anyone who helps these a-holes gets exactly what they deserve.

    I doubt it. They actually deserve much worse.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  10.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Dec 25th, 2007 @ 1:09am

    Sounds like a counterfeit bounty.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  11.  
    identicon
    technodirt diver, Feb 19th, 2008 @ 12:18am

    Duhh

    wow, siia; another great example scam artists exploiting people. siia is just a bunch of deadbeats looking to make some big bucks by exploiting innocent individuals and their annonymity by laying out lawsuits; of which the actual company who creates the software to begin with gets virtually nothing from the lawsuits; nearly all goes into the greedy bastards at siia's pockets. siia = scam artists

    siia go ahead and try to sue me too!

    kudos to everyone here on techdirt.com!!! keeping the truth alive!

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]


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