[Fsf-friends] Interview on Software Piracy - Microsoft India Chairman Ravi Venkatesan

Viswanath Durbha viswanath.durbha@[EMAIL-PROTECTED]
Wed Aug 22 11:18:42 IST 2007


There was an interesting interview with Microsoft India Chairman Ravi
Venkatesan on software piracy.

The following are some highlights which most of us would not agree,
but nevertheless, we can get some insight as to how they perceive this

Here's what he says about the issue.

1. Almost all developing countries tend to be high-piracy markets.
2. Bulk of the economic success in the near future will depend on
"Intellectual Property", hence it makes sense for India to have a good
regime around "Intellectual Property Rights".
3. Microsoft is trying to "educate" policy makers and governments and
helping in setting up IPR courts.
4. If you are using a pirated version, your experience should be
perceptibly different and worse.
5. NASSCOM has taken a very strong view on the importance of IPR,
genuine software and so forth.
6. Indian businesses today are making record profits, and their
refusal to pay for the software they use is a bit unconscionable.
7. If you have got a non-genuine copy of software, it will not be able
to access those services. This is a very promising trend for software
companies to crack down on piracies.
8. The best Microsoft or any technology company can do is to make it
harder and harder, so that the casual pirate is deterred. It will be
hard to stop the determined pirate.

It doesn't matter whether we agree with any single point mentioned
above, but the lens through which they see the issue of giving freedom
to the users is very different from the lens through which our free
software world looks at it.

A worrying point in the interview may be how Microsoft is trying to
"educate" policy-makers and governments and convince them that sharing
is bad.

Thanks and Regards,

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