[Linux-aus] Young Aussies say pirated software is OK

Paul Wayper paulway at mabula.net
Thu Feb 19 07:42:38 EST 2009

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Glen Turner wrote:
| Note that I totally agree about the lack of incentive arising from
| headcount-based license fees. The trick is to negotiate an alternative
| with an implementation cost which is not large and which you can
| convince Microsoft to accept.

The problem with this is that Microsoft Australia (at least) has it's
"Education Fund", which internally is acknowledged to be a slush fund for
undercutting any open source implementation costs in competitive bidding.  So
even if you do bid $10,000 to install Linux on a thousands computers,
Microsoft can easily offer to install Windows on all of them for $2,000, and
once again Open Source software is shown to be non-competitive in the
education industry.

And, as the Victorian government has proved, all of that doesn't even matter
when Microsoft can convince the _government_ to subsidise the cost of Windows!
~ I suspect the old 'take the decision makers out to a lavish lunch' process
still works well.

So the only thing that will break this cycle is when regulators crack down on
it, the public starts asking for something else (freedom, perhaps), or schools
(and industry) require something one of the FOSS tenets that Microsoft can't
match - open access to source code, free contribution to same, unlimited
distribution, etc.

Have fun,

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