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Penguinista.org: BSA's Campaign of Terror

Nov 14, 2000, 18:52 (3 Talkback[s])
(Other stories by Joe Barr)

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"The BSA, an organization of software publishers which presents itself as a faux-officious police enforcement bureau, is conducting a global campaign of threats, bullying, and terror on behalf of Microsoft and other of its members. The goal of the campaign is to frighten users of unlicensed software into buying legitimate, licensed copies."

"The BSA/MS alliance has come under scrutiny before. In South America in the early 1990s, it appears that the BSA was simply turning pirates of other vendors' products into legal Microsoft users. That is to say, if businesses were found using illegal copies of AutoDesk or Corel Draw, settlements were being negotiated that only required they become legal MS customers."

"Is the BSA acting solely on Microsoft's behalf in this current campaign? That level of detail isn't known at this time. But what is known is that MS and the BSA are in lock-step in the timing and content of their delivery. More than one Austin firm, neither of which use MS products, received a "Special Offer" to get 20% off of Microsoft licenses purchased during the BSA "truce" period in order to come into compliance. That "Special Offer" bears an MS copyright, and it was followed three days later by another BSA letter threatening fines and/or jail time. A copy of the "Special Offer" appears below."

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