Bonum Certa Men Certa

Microsoft Sends Its 'Partners' to Prison

"It's easier for our software to compete with Linux when there's piracy than when there's not."

--Bill Gates (2007)



FROM TODAY'S news about China:

A court in Shenzhen, China, sentenced 11 members of a software counterfeiting operation Wednesday, with the defendants getting between one and a half and six and half years in prison, according to Microsoft.

[...]

Microsoft applauded the PSB and FBI for their work in the case. "Software counterfeiting is a global, illegal business without borders," David Finn, associate general counsel focused on piracy at Microsoft, said in a statement. "Criminals may be on the other side of the globe and may not even speak the same language, but they prey upon customers and partners all over the world. This case is a testament to the importance of Microsoft's commitment to close collaboration with government bodies and local law enforcement agencies around the world to bring these criminals to justice, wherever they may be."

PSB raids in July 2007 lead to arrests and the convictions. The PSB, with tips from Microsoft and the FBI's Los Angeles bureau, found about 55,000 copies of counterfeit software and traced them back to the same syndicate, based in the province of Guangdong.


Microsoft sure loves calling them "criminals" -- a word that it repeats several times in the official statement. Again, regarding China specifically:

"It's easier for our software to compete with Linux when there's piracy than when there's not."

--Bill Gates (2007)



Why the sudden change? Here is what Gates said about China:

“They’ll get sort of addicted, and then we’ll somehow figure out how to collect sometime in the next decade.”

--Bill Gates



Microsoft needs money now. It's imploding. These crackdowns are good news to Free software.

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