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Reality Macedonia: Government Chooses Microsoft, Irritating the Open Source Software Proponents

Oct 06, 2003, 17:00 (22 Talkback[s])
(Other stories by Mirche Jovanovski)

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On September 29, 2003 the Government of Republic of Macedonia gave green light for the beginning of negotiations for accomplishing a deal for strategic partnership with the leading software corporation in the world--Microsoft. This deal, according to the announcement from the Government meeting, would legalize the existing software used in the state institutions; and aid the creation of Macedonian version of the Microsoft products, firstly of the operating system Windows. So far, the Government has not reveal how much the prospective deal with the corporation owned by software guru [sic] Bill Gates will cost Macedonia, but they are stressing that a large part of the money will return to the country. The deal includes free training for the government staff, financing Government projects, for example the so-called 'e-government,' while Microsoft would be obligated to donate products for the educational institutions, and also 20 local companies will be helped in development of their own software solutions and favorable legalizing of the software at all business subjects in the country.

"This deal caused reactions among some computer experts in the country, devoted to using other operative systems, mostly Linux. The loudest are the members of the Free Software Macedonia, non-governmental [civic] organization of about 50 users, which attempts to convince the public and the responsible Government officeholders that using Microsoft software is not favorable solution for Macedonia and that lot of countries in the world switch to other operating systems..."

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