by Mike Masnick
Tue, Mar 10th 2009 11:02pm
Some of the big proprietary software companies keep insisting that "piracy" is a big threat to their business (even if they quietly will admit that they actually benefit from piracy). After all, would a proprietary software company prefer that someone uses a competing product over using an unauthorized version of their software? In almost all cases, they'll prefer the unauthorized version, recognizing that it's much more likely to lead to future sales. So why do they keep taking actions that lead people to go to alternatives -- usually of the open source variety? The latest examples comes to us via Slashdot, which points out that in the spectacularly bankrupt country of Iceland, Microsoft has been pushing hard to get Microsoft resellers to pay up for licenses they sold to companies. The problem is that thousands of those underlying companies have gone bankrupt -- but Microsoft insists the resellers still need to pay. Their response has been to stop selling Microsoft products all together, and focus on open source alternatives instead. Perhaps it doesn't matter so much in a small, bankrupt country -- but these sorts of things have been happening elsewhere as well, and will quickly drive Microsoft customers right into the hands of competing products.
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