[Linux-aus] Re: [Osia-discuss] [Fwd: [SLUG] Re: returning windows software]

Con Zymaris conz at cyber.com.au
Wed Nov 2 09:27:02 UTC 2005

On Mon, Oct 31, 2005 at 01:29:10PM +1100, Del wrote:
> Hi,
> This issue of returning windows software provided with a name brand
> laptop has come up again on the SLUG list.  I have suggested that someone
> possibly from LA needs to take this up with the ACCC.  I know that OSIA
> have discussed the issue and there have been pros and cons put forwards
> on either side.  A few OSIA members have taken some complaints to the
> ACCC, but nothing concrete has come out of the organisation so far.
> So I will raise this one with LA and OSIA again.  Because it's an issue
> that affects Linux users rather than Linux companies, perhaps it's best
> brought to bear by LA.
> This is probably the most relevant of the emails, containing most of
> the background information required.
> I note the comment below that ACCC hasn't received any number of complaints
> about the issue -- perhaps it's time to start making some.

The problem is one of perception, psychology and mindset. To most people,
software is hidden from view - software is part of the computer, not
something separate which needs to be conceptually handled differently.

 "PCs cannot run without Windows, right?"
 "Windows is always there because all consumers want it, right?"

I've been dealing with the ACCC for about a year on this and it's not an
easy path up the hill - the perception that Windows is merely the natural
order of things is indeed that strong. Still, we have a case, so we trudge
along that path regardless.

The approach outlined below is the right one, especially section 45. The
relevant text is:
Section 45                                                                      
 Contracts, arrangements or understandings that restrict dealings or 
 affect competition
 (2) A corporation shall not:

  (a) make a contract or arrangement, or arrive at an understanding, if:

   (ii) a provision of the proposed contract, arrangement or understanding 
   has the purpose, or would have or be likely to have the effect, of 
   substantially lessening competition         
Whoever wants to join the journey, let me know.

Con Zymaris <conz at cyber.com.au> Level 4, 10 Queen St, Melbourne, Australia 
Cybersource: Australia's Leading Linux and Open Source Solutions Company 
Web: http://www.cyber.com.au/  Phone: 03 9621 2377   Fax: 03 9621 2477

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