It's been pointed out before how much Microsoft has benefited from having its operating system and office suites "pirated," in that it helped make Microsoft a de facto standard, that created lock-in and network effects, that helped make Microsoft into the massively successful company it is today. Even Bill Gates has famously said
"And as long as they're going to steal it, we want them to steal ours. They'll get sort of addicted, and then we'll somehow figure out how to collect sometime in the next decade."
Except... of course, Microsoft has been pushing hard to "stop" that kind of "piracy" in China, and it may be having an unintended effect. Slashdot
points us to the news that a group that had
been offering pirated copies of Windows is now offering a copy of Ubuntu Linux, designed to look just like Windows XP
. So, congrats, Microsoft, in "stopping" some piracy in China, you may just be driving users to Linux instead.