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michaelzap
March 18th, 2008, 04:51 PM
You know what really bugs me about this whole conversation? A lot of us can't really say what we believe because we'd be accused of advocating something illegal and perhaps have our posts removed or forum accounts suspended. Censorship begins when people are afraid to say what they think, and I don't see how any community benefits from any form of censorship.

popch
March 18th, 2008, 04:56 PM
A lot of us can't really say what we believe because we'd be accused of advocating something illegal (...) I don't see how any community benefits from any form of censorship.

While you think that any community benefits from advocating illegal things? I do not quite see how that can be true.

michaelzap
March 18th, 2008, 05:24 PM
While you think that any community benefits from advocating illegal things? I do not quite see how that can be true.

Then you do not believe in freedom of speech. I won't hijack this thread with a defense of it or examples of the many times when "legality" is on the wrong side of ethics, morality, or justice. But it would be nice to be feel comfortable in expressing the added value of "sticking it to the man" that I feel I get from Linux in its proper context, which is a Windows-dominated world where most people don't feel obligated to obey Microsoft's interpretation of copyright law.

I'm off to install Ubuntu on computers in the offices of a local NGO that currently only uses Windows...

aysiu
March 18th, 2008, 05:36 PM
If people don't mind, I've moved this discussion to its own thread.

As a moderator, I'm always a bit conflicted about the issue, as I believe people should be able to admit the truth--that piracy does occur, and that some of our forum members do pirate proprietary software, and that in their countries, this is not necessarily illegal.

At the same time, I realize this forum is hosted in America and is subject to US laws. It is also the official forums for Ubuntu and should be kept professional and not put Ubuntu at any legal risk in any country for its content.

There is sometimes, in discussions like these, a fine line between admitting to piracy and advocating piracy.

michaelzap
March 18th, 2008, 05:42 PM
I totally understand your position and appreciate your attempts to manage it constructively. Seems to me that moving this discussion to its own thread makes sense, especially since it was a bit of a sidetrack from the original post. Thanks!

NightwishFan
March 18th, 2008, 05:47 PM
I think perhaps a comparison to something else illegal would be a good way to think about it. Perhaps purchasing drugs. I think it would not be out of line to say that it happens or I agree/disagree and why. Admitting I do it is on the line and saying how has crossed it, in my opinion.

rune0077
March 18th, 2008, 05:48 PM
If people don't mind, I've moved this discussion to its own thread.

As a moderator, I'm always a bit conflicted about the issue, as I believe people should be able to admit the truth--that piracy does occur, and that some of our forum members do pirate proprietary software, and that in their countries, this is not necessarily illegal.

At the same time, I realize this forum is hosted in America and is subject to US laws. It is also the official forums for Ubuntu and should be kept professional and not put Ubuntu at any legal risk in any country for its content.

There is sometimes, in discussions like these, a fine line between admitting to piracy and advocating piracy.

Funny, there's now political parties within the EU who are advocating piracy and encouraging citizens to pirate music, movies and software. It's based on a simple fact: all surveys indicate that 90% of the European population are pirates, so by criminalizing it you are also criminalizing 90% of the population - and if 90% of the population breaks a law, then it's time to change that law, and the way to make this obvious is to keep breaking it, as much and as often as possible.

I have not myself broken this law in quite a while now, but I can certainly see what they're trying to say, and it makes sense to me.

NightwishFan
March 18th, 2008, 05:51 PM
I can say I do not agree with 95% of the countless USA laws but to disagree does not make me a criminal. I do not break laws myself or encourage others to.

Forrest Gumpp
March 18th, 2008, 07:16 PM
At the same time, I realize this forum is hosted in America and is subject to US laws. It is also the official forums for Ubuntu and should be kept professional and not put Ubuntu at any legal risk in any country for its content.
.

I'm just a little confused or uncertain as to what this really means. I recall reading a post somewhere on the Forum in recent days that stated that the Ubuntu Forums servers were located on the Isle of Man.

Does that not mean that for legal purposes the Forums lie neither within US, EU, or UK jurisdiction, but within the Manx jurisdiction, with the relevant legislature being the House of Keys? (The Isle of Man is not strictly part of the UK, although under UK protection, and the House of Keys is its parliament.)

I have always thought how very astute of Canonical to place some or all of its activities within that jurisdiction.

PS Speaking of maimed cats (manx cats have no tails), is new meaning by any chance about to be given to the scenario of "The Mouse that Roared"?

LaRoza
March 18th, 2008, 07:20 PM
To make it simple, just follow the Ubuntu Forums Code of Conduct :)

aysiu
March 18th, 2008, 07:22 PM
I'm just a little confused or uncertain as to what this really means. I recall reading a post somewhere on the Forum in recent days that stated that the Ubuntu Forums servers were located on the Isle of Man.

Does that not mean that for legal purposes the Forums lie neither within US, EU, or UK jurisdiction, but within the Manx jurisdiction, with the relevant legislature being the House of Keys? (The Isle of Man is not strictly part of the UK, although under UK protection, and the House of Keys is its parliament.)

I have always thought how very astute of Canonical to place some or all of its activities within that jurisdiction.

PS Speaking of maimed cats (manx cats have no tails), is new meaning by any chance about to be given to the scenario of "The Mouse that Roared"?
Perhaps things have changed recently, but I recall ubuntu-geek saying that he hosts the forums in the US and that Ubuntu helps fund the forums. In any case, Ubuntu as an organization generally tends toward the most conservative of international laws.

popch
March 18th, 2008, 08:55 PM
This is in its fashion a fun thread because it can be addressed on so many levels. Fear not, I am not going to do so all in one post. I may even decide to address only some of them.

First, the (somewhat arbitrary) title of the newly spawned thread: Is talking about piracy different from advocating piracy?

That's an easy one. Let's say that 'talking about piracy' is the same as 'making a statement about piracy'. Let's also say that 'advocating piracy' means encouraging someone to do an act of piracy.

Then it becomes quite clear that the statements which encourage acts of piracy are a subset of the statements which are in favor of piracy, those in turn are a subset of all statements about piracy.

Caution: the following reflects purely the opinion of myself as a member. It must not be understood as a guideline for forum staff, and points I mentioned have been debated in some of the posts following this one. If in doubt, read the CoC.

Talking about piracy can indeed be different from advocating it.

The current practice in this forum reflects this fact quite nicely. You can, for instance,
define what constitutes piracy
report that it is being done in some parts of the world or some social strata and so on
report that it can be difficult or easy to do
boast that you have done itand much more without any admins appearing to wake from their apparent slumbers.

On the gripping hand, if you
tell others to do it
or relate how to do ityou probably can reckon the time in minutes until someone calls a halt to it.

Management summary:

What: you can talk about piracy here, but you can not encourage others to do it and you can not give recipes on how to do it.

Why: You have agreed to the CoC

LaRoza
March 18th, 2008, 08:59 PM
This is in its fashion a fun thread because it can be addressed on so many levels. Fear not, I am not going to do so all in one post. I may even decide to address only some of them.

First, the (somewhat arbitrary) title of the newly spawned thread: Is talking about piracy different from advocating piracy?


Is talking about talking about piracty or advocating piracy ok?

aysiu
March 18th, 2008, 08:59 PM
I really wasn't sure what to call this thread, so the title was rather arbitrary and not well-thought-out... something I came up with on at the spur of the moment.

The thin line to which I referred earlier is the boast that you have done it, which can be considered advocacy, even if it's not explicity instructions on how to achieve it.

LaRoza
March 18th, 2008, 09:06 PM
I really wasn't sure what to call this thread, so the title was rather arbitrary and not well-thought-out... something I came up with on at the spur of the moment.

The thin line to which I referred earlier is the boast that you have done it, which can be considered advocacy, even if it's not explicity instructions on how to achieve it.

You didn't start it...

Did you move it here?

Yes, I agree with you.

aysiu
March 18th, 2008, 09:07 PM
You didn't start it...

Did you move it here?

Yes, I agree with you.
Yes, it started as a few off-topic posts in another thread, so I moved it and had to come up with a new title for the thread.

popch
March 18th, 2008, 09:08 PM
Is talking about talking about piracty or advocating piracy ok?

***STACK OVERFLOW***


I really wasn't sure what to call this thread, so the title was rather arbitrary and not well-thought-out... something I came up with on at the spur of the moment.

The thin line to which I referred earlier is the boast that you have done it, which can be considered advocacy, even if it's not explicity instructions on how to achieve it.

The title had an arbitrary air, but then, it seemed very apt for the kind of thing going on in the thread which spawned it.

I agree that boasting could be construed as advocating; it would then become reprimandable, if there's such a word.

mips
March 19th, 2008, 01:10 AM
At the same time, I realize this forum is hosted in America and is subject to US laws. It is also the official forums for Ubuntu and should be kept professional and not put Ubuntu at any legal risk in any country for its content.


I'm sorry but you are wrong here, it used to be the case that the forums were hosted in the usa and the domain was registered in the usa but that is no longer the case so USA law no longer applies.

The forums ae now the property of Canonical. The domain is registered in the UK, the servers are located in the UK, the company is registered in the Isle Of Man.

So to be blunt I don't see what this has to do with USA law whatsoever. If you dont believe me do your own lookups.

If I'm wrong I will eat humble pie :)

LaRoza
March 19th, 2008, 01:32 AM
I'm sorry but you are wrong here, it used to be the case that the forums were hosted in the usa and the domain was registered in the usa but that is no longer the case so USA law no longer applies.

The forums ae now the property of Canonical. The domain is registered in the UK, the servers are located in the UK, the company is registered in the Isle Of Man.

So to be blunt I don't see what this has to do with USA law whatsoever. If you dont believe me do your own lookups.

If I'm wrong I will eat humble pie :)

Yes, the servers changed, but it doesn't matter. I am sure ubuntu-geek won't break any laws of his country (he is in the USA) and since he is the overlord, that is the way it is.

Forrest Gumpp
March 19th, 2008, 01:38 AM
The forums ae now the property of Canonical. The domain is registered in the UK, the servers are located in the UK, the company is registered in the Isle Of Man.

Your statement may be clear enough with respect to the location of the servers, but does it mean exactly what it says? Are the servers located on the Isle of Man, or elsewhere within the UK? It would be easy for many not to perceive any difference between these two scenaria, but an important one nevertheless exists.

mips
March 19th, 2008, 01:40 AM
Yes, the servers changed, but it doesn't matter. I am sure ubuntu-geek won't break any laws of his country (he is in the USA) and since he is the overlord, that is the way it is.

That is irrelevant when it comes to the law. USA law no longer applies, period!

I you doubt me refer it to Canonicals legal team and they will probably tell you the same.

mips
March 19th, 2008, 01:43 AM
Your statement may be clear enough with respect to the location of the servers, but does it mean exactly what it says? Are the servers located on the Isle of Man, or elsewhere within the UK? It would be easy for many not to perceive any difference between these two scenaria, but an important one nevertheless exists.

The servers are located in London the last time I checked. If not London then somewhere in England which does not change much.

The Isle of Man still follows english common law although there are several differences when it comes to comapny taxes etc.

LaRoza
March 19th, 2008, 01:48 AM
That is irrelevant when it comes to the law. USA law no longer applies, period!

I you doubt me refer it to Canonicals legal team and they will probably tell you the same.

No it doesn't. I never said it did. I don't care if it does or doesn't.

The point is that illegal activities on this forum break the UbuntuForums Code of Conduct.

mips
March 19th, 2008, 02:01 AM
No it doesn't. I never said it did. I don't care if it does or doesn't.

The point is that illegal activities on this forum break the UbuntuForums Code of Conduct.


Yes, the servers changed, but it doesn't matter. I am sure ubuntu-geek won't break any laws of his country (he is in the USA) and since he is the overlord, that is the way it is.

Yeah we know you don't care. But I care even less what you care about to be honest. ubuntu-geek is not the be all and end all you know.

Things that are illegal in the USA due to your DMCA laws etc do NOT appky to the rest of the world. Wake up, the rest of the world does not revolve around the USA and it's laws. DeCSS is illegal in the USA but not the rest of the world. But discussions about libdvdcss are tolerated on these forums. A user trying to transfer a legit windows partition gets reprimanded, why?. It honestly reaks of hypocricy to be very blunt.

Can anyone else smell the stench here?

Forrest Gumpp
March 19th, 2008, 02:04 AM
The servers are located in London the last time I checked. If not London then somewhere in England which does not change much.

The Isle of Man still follows english common law although there are several differences when it comes to comapny taxes etc.

I suppose the taxation aspects alone justify this prudent domiciling of Canonical. Full marks for this foresight!

However, I wasn't thinking so much about taxation, and I certainly took the applicability of English common law as a given, in seeking to clarify possible reasons for Canonical's choice of the Isle of Man as its domicile. It was more the applicability of treaty obligations entered into by the UK to the activities of any entity on or from the Isle of Man that I find interesting.

mips
March 19th, 2008, 02:20 AM
I suppose the taxation aspects alone justify this prudent domiciling of Canonical. Full marks for this foresight!

However, I wasn't thinking so much about taxation, and I certainly took the applicability of English common law as a given, in seeking to clarify possible reasons for Canonical's choice of the Isle of Man as its domicile. It was more the applicability of treaty obligations entered into by the UK to the activities of any entity on or from the Isle of Man that I find interesting.

Mark is no idiot. If I was to register a international comapany I would probably also register it in a place like the Isle of Man, just makes so much sense. I actually researched this at one stage and it really is not 'that' expensive to register a company there.

KiwiNZ
March 19th, 2008, 02:20 AM
I dont care about what people do with piracy , that is up to them and how they settle their conscience.

But when it comes to piracy and Ubuntu Forums it is simple .
One can discuss it , its ethic's etc .

I do not believe advocating it here is a good thing , and as for displaying how to's and providing links to pirate content, simple, the answer is no .It puts the Site and its owners at risk.

We have all witnessed site take downs , do we really want to lose what we have here?

The is a zillion other locations to do that , let those sites stand the risk

mips
March 19th, 2008, 02:39 AM
But when it comes to piracy and Ubuntu Forums it is simple .
One can discuss it , its ethic's etc .

I do not believe advocating it here is a good thing , and as for displaying how to's and providing links to pirate content, simple, the answer is no .It puts the Site and its owners at risk.


I have no objection to that. Piracy (Copyright Infringement to be more correct) does happen in everyday life though which I do not support at all.

If it matters at all before I started using Linux I will admit that I was a guilty party when it came to software, now I'm 100% legit and I have always brought my own music as I actually like ownibg a CD (although I still think music companies are raping the the consumer).

What I do not appreciate is USA law being applied to me, I do not live in the USA, I'm not a USA citizen so I could care less and I think others outside the USA feel the same (sorry if I assume wrong). Another thing that rubs me the wrong way is the hypocracy on these forums, technically we all know DeCSS is illegal in the USA, msttcorefonts & w32codecs are illegal but yet it is allowed (and I have mentioned this before) but still people get hammered for lesser transgressions.

I'm beginning to feel I should just call it a day and be on my way somewhere else.

KiwiNZ
March 19th, 2008, 03:02 AM
I have no objection to that. Piracy (Copyright Infringement to be more correct) does happen in everyday life though which I do not support at all.

If it matters at all before I started using Linux I will admit that I was a guilty party when it came to software, now I'm 100% legit and I have always brought my own music as I actually like ownibg a CD (although I still think music companies are raping the the consumer).

What I do not appreciate is USA law being applied to me, I do not live in the USA, I'm not a USA citizen so I could care less and I think others outside the USA feel the same (sorry if I assume wrong). Another thing that rubs me the wrong way is the hypocracy on these forums, technically we all know DeCSS is illegal in the USA, msttcorefonts & w32codecs are illegal but yet it is allowed (and I have mentioned this before) but still people get hammered for lesser transgressions.

I'm beginning to feel I should just call it a day and be on my way somewhere else.

I completely understand your sentiments Mips , but what we need to remember , that unlike the social forums out there , Ubuntu Forums are owned by Canonical and are the Official support forums for Ubuntu.

Therefore as such we are controlled and guided by the Corporate wishes of the owners.

Canonical affords us a good level of freedom and autonomy however if we were to allow them to come under risk ,that freedom and autonomy would be removed. I dont want that , and I am sure our membership doesnt want it either.

So I ask , why risk it for something that can be done at other venues?

LaRoza
March 19th, 2008, 03:13 AM
Yeah we know you don't care. But I care even less what you care about to be honest. ubuntu-geek is not the be all and end all you know.

Things that are illegal in the USA due to your DMCA laws etc do NOT appky to the rest of the world. Wake up, the rest of the world does not revolve around the USA and it's laws. DeCSS is illegal in the USA but not the rest of the world. But discussions about libdvdcss are tolerated on these forums. A user trying to transfer a legit windows partition gets reprimanded, why?. It honestly reaks of hypocricy to be very blunt.

Can anyone else smell the stench here?

He isn't? Maybe not in a philosphical sense, but he is the creator of this forum and makes the decisions (as part of the Forum Council)

I have a feeling you think the USA laws are somehow being imposed on other people here, or that I think they are the most important laws. They aren't.

Were you reprimanded for such a thing? If you have a problem with a staff's actions, post in the Resolution Centre.

You are getting very hostile, and I do not feel like you are understanding what I was saying...

The Ubuntu Forums Code of Conduct is used and enforced on this forum It has a part about illegal activities. If you find that to be confusing, don't post when you doubt the legality of something.

Pretend like the EULA of any software package is binding law and you'll be fine in this regard.

mips
March 19th, 2008, 03:31 AM
It's 04:25 here and I need sleep. I will respond tomorrow when I'm more awake.

Edit: I mean later today, just goes to show.

KiwiNZ
March 19th, 2008, 03:38 AM
It's 04:25 here and I need sleep. I will respond tomorrow when I'm more awake.

Edit: I mean later today, just goes to show.

Good grief man

kiwi sends peacefull sleep enducing sounds

bluej774
March 19th, 2008, 06:01 AM
At the same time, I realize this forum is hosted in America and is subject to US laws. It is also the official forums for Ubuntu and should be kept professional and not put Ubuntu at any legal risk in any country for its content.

I'm not a lawyer, but I don't think the community as a whole could get into any trouble unless someone on the boards offers a link to a pirated program or offers knowledge on how to pirate a program. Just saying you use pirated software could only get yourself into trouble. At least, that's my understanding of law in practice.


I have a feeling you think the USA laws are somehow being imposed on other people here, or that I think they are the most important laws. They aren't.

Actually, I feel that US law is being imposed. Of course, this doesn't really change anything for me since I live in the US anyway. However, you said earlier that ubuntu-geek lives in the US. I feel it was implied that when the code of conduct was drafted, it was structured with US law in mind when it came to sections regarding legalities. However, the kink comes when many users join from out of the country. If they are subject to the code of conduct to remain active in the forums, which they are, and the portions of the code regarding "the law" refer to US law, then, yes, they are having US law imposed upon them despite it not applying to them, at least where this forum is involved.

LaRoza
March 19th, 2008, 06:05 AM
Actually, I feel that US law is being imposed. Of course, this doesn't really change anything for me since I live in the US anyway. However, you said earlier that ubuntu-geek lives in the US. I feel it was implied that when the code of conduct was drafted, it was structured with US law in mind when it came to sections regarding legalities. However, the kink comes when many users join from out of the country. If they are subject to the code of conduct to remain active in the forums, which they are, and the portions of the code regarding "the law" refer to US law, then, yes, they are having US law imposed upon them despite it not applying to them, at least where this forum is involved.

Well, in general, it just means to respect the licenses.

Although murder may not violate the laws of any country in an area not claimed by any country, it is still murder.

If the license of a script is scrawled in a comment in as "just mention my name if you use this for your work", I would respect it. Not out of fear of retribution, but because it is the respectful thing to do. In like manner, the EULA of Vista, which forbids virtualization is respected by me not because I think it makes sense, but because that is the license of the software and it is the right thing to do. Naturally, if an EULA required some I couldn't accept be done, I wouldn't accept it and not use the software.

So to me, it isn't specific to the laws of a country (even if it is), it is just following the spirit of Ubuntu and isn't that what it is all about?

bluej774
March 19th, 2008, 06:13 AM
I understand all that and I can respect your viewpoint here. I guess the bottom line of this thread is this. I value honesty. I like being as honest as I possibly can be in all situations. So, where is the line drawn in this forum? Can I admit to pirating software if I hypothetically did so? Perhaps "boast" should be defined in this context. I would never think of introducing any links or information about pirating, but do I have to pretend to be a choir boy in order to dodge intra-forum discipline?

jken146
March 19th, 2008, 06:20 AM
The problem I have with the Code of Conduct is that it does not mention which laws it is referring to. It says "You agree not to post any ... material that may violate applicable laws," and "Messages containing sexually oriented/violent/illegal dialogue, images, content, or links to these things will be deleted. Messages with links to or suggesting illegal activity will also be deleted." There is no explanation of whose laws are referred to.

This has never actually affected my giving tech. support and advice to people though.

LaRoza
March 19th, 2008, 06:20 AM
I understand all that and I can respect your viewpoint here. I guess the bottom line of this thread is this. I value honesty. I like being as honest as I possibly can in all situations. So, where is the line drawn in this forum? Can I admit to pirating software if I hypothetically did so? Perhaps "boast" should be defined in this context. I would never think of introducing any links or information about pirating, but do I have to pretend to be a choir boy in order to dodge intra-forum discipline?

Well, that is a tough question.

It would be up to the staff involved. Recently, a staff member reported a post that they were confused about and not sure if it were legal. We discussed it, and talked about the aspects of it and came to the conclusion it was alright.

But that shows that there are no lines clearly drawn that we can see.

My way of dealing with things is to remove the content or lock the thread, if it seems to be breaking the rules, but doesn't link to or openly condone illegal content.

(Infractions are reserved for blatent violations when I issue them) Some may feel closing a thread to be a big thing, but it isn't. I have had threads of mine closed before (before I was a mod) because they were going in a bad direction or for other reasons.

As usually, the Resolution Centre will allow the Forum Council to review any issue.

k2t0f12d
March 19th, 2008, 06:24 AM
Although murder may not violate the laws of any country in an area not claimed by any country, it is still murder.

Would you seriously have me believe that ending the life of another person is equivalent in any possible sense with unauthorized sharing or usage of ideas expressible as executable computer programming? :rolleyes:

LaRoza
March 19th, 2008, 06:25 AM
Would you seriously have me believe that ending the life of another person is equivalent in any possible sense with unauthorized sharing or usage of ideas expressible as executable computer programming? :rolleyes:

No, it was just a hyberbole.

k2t0f12d
March 19th, 2008, 06:47 AM
No, it was just a hyberbole.

Yes I see that the exaggeration is self-evident; however, even in the case of hyperbole, the exaggerated idea must be equivalent in some sense to the non-exaggerated.

Killing someone, whether in the jurisdiction of social authority that objects or not, has real, tangible, and permanent consequences. Creating an installation of Vista in a virtual machine, whether in a jurisdiction whose laws support its EULA or not, has none whatsoever, aside from some movement of bits in some computer hardware components.

That was an awful comparison that I found misleading, inaccurate, and personally distasteful.

LaRoza
March 19th, 2008, 06:52 AM
Yes I see that the exaggeration is self-evident; however, even in the case of hyperbole, the exaggerated idea must be equivalent in some sense to the non-exaggerated.

Killing someone, whether in the jurisdiction of social authority that objects or not, has real, tangible, and permanent consequences. Creating an installation of Vista in a virtual machine, whether in a jurisdiction whose laws support its EULA or not, has none whatsoever, aside from some movement of bits in some computer hardware components.

That was an awful comparison that I found misleading, inaccurate, and personally distasteful.

Sorry.

It meant to signify that following a rule shouldn't be dependant on the probabily of enforcement.

hyper_ch
March 19th, 2008, 08:34 AM
Even if the servers are not in the US it doesn't matter much.

The US is still in control over .com/.net/.org domains and hence they also control ubuntuforums.org.

k2t0f12d
March 19th, 2008, 11:25 AM
It meant to signify that following a rule shouldn't be dependant on the probabily of enforcement.

A rule should not also be followed simply because it is a rule. Obedience should be given when the rule is good and helpful, and denied when the rule is harmful and unjust, regardless of the possibility of retribution. So while your stated point isn't bad, it is really terribly overshadowed by the attempt to tie the egregious moral connotations of murder to the act of unauthorized usage and copying which do not share this moral question in any way, shape, or form. What the other side was saying is that the ludicrous instantiations of copyright law in the U.S. does not automatically imply that the behavior those laws are meant to restrict are also morally questionable, because in other, more sensible countries it is both accepted legally and unquestioned morally.

rune0077
March 19th, 2008, 11:47 AM
Creating an installation of Vista in a virtual machine, whether in a jurisdiction whose laws support its EULA or not, has none whatsoever, aside from some movement of bits in some computer hardware components.


Hey, Microsoft just changed their license agreement, and it should now be perfectly legal to install all versions of Vista on a virtual machine (provided that you bought the version legally, of course). To cheers to that, I'm no longer violating the law.

frodon
March 19th, 2008, 12:08 PM
Hey, Microsoft just changed their license agreement, and it should now be perfectly legal to install all versions of Vista on a virtual machine (provided that you bought the version legally, of course). To cheers to that, I'm no longer violating the law.The question is not to tell you if you violate the law or not as we surely not have the knowledge and power to affirm this (neither you BTW), the question is to protect ubuntuforums.

If tomorrow we get legal pursuit because of such material on the forum and are forced to close the forum this kind of arguments (even if they are right) are not going to make ubuntuforums reopen and the whole community here would be impacted. I think you will agree that there're more benefit keeping this forum open than allowing you to post something dangerous for ubuntuforums.

Unfortunately we can't pay a lawyer to confirm that one thing or another can't be the starting point of legal pursuits so till we get one we have to be prudent, understand by prudent surely a bit more restrictive than we could be if we would be international law experts.

So if you post such thing now you are more likely to get the thread closed or post removed to protect ubuntuforums and not to censor you.

hyper_ch
March 19th, 2008, 12:21 PM
(provided that you bought the version legally, of course)

You cannot buy Windows, you can only licence it ;)

mips
March 19th, 2008, 12:50 PM
He isn't? Maybe not in a philosphical sense, but he is the creator of this forum and makes the decisions (as part of the Forum Council)

No he is not. He is the original creator but no longer has ownership. Yes he makes decisions but in conjunction with the FC, they are not unilateral decisions.



I have a feeling you think the USA laws are somehow being imposed on other people here, or that I think they are the most important laws. They aren't.

I never said it, staff did however.

Originally Posted by aysiu
At the same time, I realize this forum is hosted in America and is subject to US laws.



Were you reprimanded for such a thing? If you have a problem with a staff's actions, post in the Resolution Centre.

No I was not reprimanded but others have been and this discussion is about illegal activities so I do not see where that comes from.



You are getting very hostile, and I do not feel like you are understanding what I was saying...


Hostile? Why do you say that? Simply because I do not agree with you and pointing things out that make it a bit uncomfortable?



The Ubuntu Forums Code of Conduct is used and enforced on this forum It has a part about illegal activities. If you find that to be confusing, don't post when you doubt the legality of something.

Yes, we understand that all to well. Why does the CoC exclude things like DeCSS, w32codecs, msttcorefonts, OSX in VM but nails a user for trying to transfer a legitimate os to another computer? Are you telling me the above activities are not illegal?



Pretend like the EULA of any software package is binding law and you'll be fine in this regard.

EULA violated here, http://ubuntuforums.org/showthread.php?t=727994
EULA violated when people install MS components in Linux which they never might have owned(licenced) in the first place

Artificial Intelligence
March 19th, 2008, 02:12 PM
What!?! And have one of my posts reported? Uh no, to many of those has already been reported. Besides, no need to get anyone else in trouble. But I think we are all well aware of the issues you're raising (maybe except for the staff, who apparently would rather chose to "ignore" such things, and we all know how easily problems are solved if only we close our eyes and pretend they're not there, eh?).

yah, better to be on side-line and pointing fingers. It's so easy and painless...
[/sarcasm]


On topic;
There's a view I think people forget here, it's that piracy (when it comes to software and games is pretty harmful to the Open Source movement. Especially when it comes to Linux Game industry (loki games anyone). So it's also in our own interest to remove such elements if we want Linux to be supported.

p_quarles
March 19th, 2008, 02:35 PM
This thread is about piracy, and the ethics of discussing it. If you wish to talk about other things, please do so in another thread.

sajro
March 19th, 2008, 02:46 PM
It seems people are focusing on the 'piracy' of software. Are music and films not equally important?


While you think that any community benefits from advocating illegal things? I do not quite see how that can be true.

It is an international community, In some countries, so-called 'piracy' is completely legitimate. These countries include Canada and Sweden, and most likely, the European Union members will be joining soon. Despite the fact my country (and the one housing this forum's server) hasn't caught up with the times (darn DMCA), it is no reason to deny others of expression of their thoughts on such subjects.

Such a question could be likened to, "Is the discussion of murder the same as advocating murder?" Both are illegal in the country this forum is hosted in, yet one may talk about murder. They are both crimes, thus if you may discuss one (w/o it being considered advocation), you may discuss the other, especially considering it's a MUCH less serious offense.

And, yes, I'm advocating it (you got a problem with that? tough cookies), though I prefer to shed any affiliation [of the act] with nasty criminals by using the term "copy liberation." Copy liberators are not criminals, they are simply consumers of art. If one creates art (including software) they have no right to hold it hostage, since it will outlive them and DEFINITELY outlive any money they make from it.

saulgoode
March 19th, 2008, 02:51 PM
I would propose that the wording of Section I Paragraph 6 of the Code of Conduct be amended to


Adult Content/Violence/Criminal Activity: Messages containing sexually oriented/violent/criminal dialogue, images, content, or links to these things will be deleted. Messages with links to or suggesting criminal activity will also be deleted. Posting or linking to any of these could result in a ban.

This substitution of the word "criminal" for "illegal" would provide a proper distinction between breaches of civil law (disagreements between citizens where no crime has been committed) and violations of criminal law.

The presumption that someone violating the terms of a contract or licensing agreement should be considered a "criminal" is misguided. Personally, I doubt that such a disagreement between the contracting parties would be considered "illegal" but, even if it were, the nature of such disputes would dictate that the legality of the activities would only be decided after a civil trial has been held.

Violation of a EULA is not criminal, it might be considered illegal but only in the sense that remedies are sought through application of contract law (does this even imply illegality?). It would be more logical if the CoC only addressed the issue of criminality and not the disagreements between private parties.

sajro
March 19th, 2008, 02:57 PM
This substitution of the word "criminal" for "illegal" would provide a proper distinction between breaches of civil law (disagreements between citizens were no crime has been committed) and violations of criminal law. .

The amendment would need to mention the definition of criminal/illegal. Meaning, what country's definition of it?


Even if the servers are not in the US it doesn't matter much.

The US is still in control over .com/.net/.org domains and hence they also control ubuntuforums.org.

Correct me if I'm wrong, but the domain name system is controlled (from what I remember) by ICANN, which is an international organization. The US, I believe, only controls .us, .gov (but not .gov.uk, .gov.ie, etc.), an .edu (but not .edu.*).

OrangeCrate
March 19th, 2008, 03:08 PM
Stealing proprietary software where you live may not be technically illegal, but it sure in the hell is unethical, and if you do it, in my book, you're just another form of low-life.

As it relates to following the rules set up by whoever runs this forums, it's their ballyard, and if you don't want to abide by their rules, go find some place else to play. In fact, if a poster threatens to leave, in support of something he posted, IMO, he ought to be banned on the spot.

<snip>

k2t0f12d
March 19th, 2008, 03:12 PM
There's a view I think people forget here, it's that piracy (when it comes to software and games is pretty harmful to the Open Source movement. Especially when it comes to Linux Game industry (loki games anyone). So it's also in our own interest to remove such elements if we want Linux to be supported.

There already is operating system software that provides vastly superior support for software distributed by those who find the idea of user's having rights unappealing. The Open Source movement is flawed in its predication that proprietary and free software can or should coexist socially. They cannot, and so long as both exist, the cultural dynamic of having both in the same social space will cause them to strive to destroy one another regardless of the intentions of those that have created and licensed the software. The entire shift in the discussion from rights and freedom to technical superiority, and other less meaningful terms such as "openness", has been an unnecessary and unfortunate impediment to the spread, support, and acceptance of software freedom. The question in whether or not business can or should support free software operating systems such as GNU/Linux is not something that hinges on whether or not some kids are trading copies of software in violation of that software's licensing on the web. Ultimately, it is we, the users of free software, and the forward-thinking businesses that already support free software, who are going to decide the social mandate demonstrating that the most advantageous and ethical way to handle computing is in freedom, and those who would not have otherwise supported free software will either have to change the way they do business, or leave the market.

hyper_ch
March 19th, 2008, 03:39 PM
Stealing proprietary software where you live may not be technically illegal, but it sure in the hell is unethical, and if you do it, in my book, you're just another form of low-life.
There aren't global ethics and also ethics do change over time. So you might consider it unethical but that's just because of the milieu you have been in your whole life


Correct me if I'm wrong, but the domain name system is controlled (from what I remember) by ICANN, which is an international organization. The US, I believe, only controls .us, .gov (but not .gov.uk, .gov.ie, etc.), an .edu (but not .edu.*).
Pro forma it is... but actually the US is still in charge of it...
http://yro.slashdot.org/article.pl?sid=08/01/24/1241232
http://www.domainnamenews.com/icann-policy/icann-issues-plea-for-independence-from-us-government/1397
http://community.zdnet.co.uk/blog/0,1000000567,10007149o-2000331761b,00.htm
http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/technology/7205609.stm

OrangeCrate
March 19th, 2008, 04:06 PM
There aren't global ethics and also ethics do change over time. So you might consider it unethical but that's just because of the milieu you have been in your whole life
]

If you steal a new car (a proprietary product) off of a lot in Switzerland, or any other country in the world, what will happen to you? Why should proprietary software be any different?

LaRoza
March 19th, 2008, 04:10 PM
A rule should not also be followed simply because it is a rule. Obedience should be given when the rule is good and helpful, and denied when the rule is harmful and unjust, regardless of the possibility of retribution. So while your stated point isn't bad, it is really terribly overshadowed by the attempt to tie the egregious moral connotations of murder to the act of unauthorized usage and copying which do not share this moral question in any way, shape, or form. What the other side was saying is that the ludicrous instantiations of copyright law in the U.S. does not automatically imply that the behavior those laws are meant to restrict are also morally questionable, because in other, more sensible countries it is both accepted legally and unquestioned morally.

I understand, you are right. It was a hastely written statement and not thought out.

There is another side as well, the GPL. Why should we expect others to respect it if we don't respect their licenses?

hyper_ch
March 19th, 2008, 04:42 PM
If you steal a new car (a proprietary product) off of a lot in Switzerland, or any other country in the world, what will happen to you? Why should proprietary software be any different?

For the simple fact that material products can't be multiplied indefinitively... immaterial products can...

If I steal your car then I have the car and you don't have it anymore...

When I copy a piece of software then it's like a creatio ex nihil... you still have your software and I also have it ;)

But as said before, ethic is not a universal standard and ethics do vary...

rune0077
March 19th, 2008, 04:57 PM
On topic;
There's a view I think people forget here, it's that piracy (when it comes to software and games is pretty harmful to the Open Source movement. Especially when it comes to Linux Game industry (loki games anyone). So it's also in our own interest to remove such elements if we want Linux to be supported.

That really depends on what "our own interests are". Personally, I would love to see Linux prosper, but I would love much more to see a change in law that means we wouldn't have to throw roughly 90% of every teenager in the world in jail - hence, I would rather support piracy than I would Linux, if it came to a choice (luckily, it don't). Yeah yeah, I know, we don't actually throw them in jail but you get my point.

Also let me just say, before everyone starts to think that I'm blatantly attacking the staff here, that I was merely trying to point out the issue that mips mentioned. Of course staff does not, and should not be required to, keep track of every single post on this forum. They're not machines after all, and making mistakes is perfectly legit. It's just to say, than when looking in from the outside, without having much understanding of the inner workings of things, it does seem that some things are being punished rather severely, while many other, arguably more severe, things goes completely unnoticed. And whether it's because these other posts where never reported or not, it still creates a feeling of "unfairness" that I think the staff would do well to try and understand (and probably already understands).

OrangeCrate
March 19th, 2008, 05:04 PM
When I copy a piece of software then it's like a creatio ex nihil... you still have your software and I also have it ;)
.

And, you took away the profit on a finished product, wherein a company invested considerable resources in R&D, manufacturing, and marketing and sales costs. They also paid employees, accrued benefits, and incurred other costs associated with operating the company.

The software product was designed, manufactured, distributed, and clearly marketed with a disclosure that it was a copyrighted, and protected product. All of this was done with the intent of making an operating profit, and enhancing stockholder equity in the company.

No matter how you justify copying the software based on your perceived ethical values, IMO, it's still theft - just like stealing the car off of the lot. There is no difference.

p_quarles
March 19th, 2008, 05:04 PM
That really depends on what "our own interests are". Personally, I would love to see Linux prosper, but I would love much more to see a change in law that means we wouldn't have to throw roughly 90% of every teenager in the world in jail - hence, I would rather support piracy than I would Linux, if it came to a choice (luckily, it don't). Yeah yeah, I know, we don't actually throw them in jail but you get my point.
Actually, Microsoft has supported piracy in the past. For a long time, they turned a blind eye to China's rampant use of unlicensed Windows software, on the grounds that it would produce vendor lock-in in the long run.

Respecting license agreements -- whether or not it is treated as a criminal, civil, or contractual matter -- is certainly in the interest of F/LOSS communities, and you will find that a number of these communities will feel the same way about this as this one does.

rune0077
March 19th, 2008, 05:12 PM
Respecting license agreements -- whether or not it is treated as a criminal, civil, or contractual matter -- is certainly in the interest of F/LOSS communities, and you will find that a number of these communities will feel the same way about this as this one does.

I didn't claim otherwise, I just said that it is more important to me to see the laws on piracy change than it is to see Linux prosper.

Artificial Intelligence
March 19th, 2008, 05:16 PM
I agree with OrangeCrate and p_quarles.

As much I love free software (both as in beer and in speech) as anyone else on this board (hopefully ;) ), I think there still need to respect to those who want money or have restricted license as part of their software. You may then disagree with it. Then in my book you have the option to go and use the free alternative, not stealing properity(sp?) software.
This way you can tell people around you how you want the world.

I think "it should be free or I steal it" (note the "") will backfire greatly if we try to force other people in our way of thinking/acting.


It may be naive thinking of my side, but I have always been a sucker for mutual respect ;)

aysiu
March 19th, 2008, 05:31 PM
If Bill Gates is for piracy, I don't see how continuing to pirate software is some kind of civil disobedience. You're doing what "the man" wants. Granted, it's his second choice (the first choice is you paying for the license), but it's still in the top two.

From Gates, Buffett a bit bearish (http://www.news.com/2100-1023-212942.html); July 2, 1998:
Although about 3 million computers get sold every year in China, but people don't pay for the software. Someday they will, though. As long as they are going to steal it, we want them to steal ours. They'll get sort of addicted, and then we'll somehow figure out how to collect sometime in the next decade. From Gates: how piracy worked for me in China (http://business.timesonline.co.uk/tol/business/industry_sectors/technology/article2098235.ece); July 18, 2007:
It's easier for our software to compete with Linux when there's piracy than when there's not
Microsoft does not break out figures, but sales in China this year are expected to hit about $700 million.

That is still less than the group’s earnings in California, but up threefold from 2004.

OrangeCrate
March 19th, 2008, 05:39 PM
It may be naive thinking of my side, but I have always been a sucker for mutual respect ;)

Agreed. I choose not to buy and use MS products (as an example), and I use and am committed to FOSS. But, I do respect their right to come to market in their own manner.

@p_quarles:


Actually, Microsoft has supported piracy in the past. For a long time, they turned a blind eye to China's rampant use of unlicensed Windows software, on the grounds that it would produce vendor lock-in in the long run.

It is just a matter of semantics, but I would rather not think of MS's philosophy as "supporting piracy", but more of a strategy of simply giving away the product, with long term penetration goals in mind.

It was/is a pretty good marketing strategy, and not really any different than car manufacturers offering deep discounts (potentially unprofitable) to stimulate sales, and to support profitable service on the car, or the sale of add-ons and extended warranties later in the sales cycle.

hyper_ch
March 19th, 2008, 06:05 PM
And, you took away the profit on a finished product,
That's a wrong assumption... you assume because you can get a product for free (legally or not) that you are also willing to pay for it if it wasn't free... that assumption is totally wrong.

Furthermore you assume that there is actually a right to make profit... it might be a right to make profit in your country but that might not be the case everywhere...

LaRoza
March 19th, 2008, 06:10 PM
That's a wrong assumption... you assume because you can get a product for free (legally or not) that you are also willing to pay for it if it wasn't free... that assumption is totally wrong.

Furthermore you assume that there is actually a right to make profit... it might be a right to make profit in your country but that might not be the case everywhere...

Supporting freedom for other people is a good way to support it for yourself.

DRM and other lockins didn't come about because they suddenly thought it would be cool.

rune0077
March 19th, 2008, 06:15 PM
I agree with OrangeCrate and p_quarles.


I agree to an extent here to. The problem is, that most teenagers today have been raised with the notion that pirating software is neither illegal nor unethical, and that it is perfectly okay. I do see ethical issues in pirating, but I doubt my kid brother does, nor any of his friends and peers. Go ten years into the future, and these people will be running the show and setting the rules, at which point anyone who thinks that pirating is illegal will be considered the "old and dying dinosaurs" that everybody else is laughing at.

I guess my point is, that it is really entirely unimportant what you or me or any "adult" considers right or wrong, because if we want to keep evolving with the world, we really need to take some of our cues from the coming generation.

bapoumba
March 19th, 2008, 06:25 PM
Split discussion is here :
http://ubuntuforums.org/showthread.php?t=729029

popch
March 19th, 2008, 06:26 PM
... most teenagers today have been raised with the notion that pirating software is neither illegal nor unethical, and that it is perfectly okay. ... Go ten years into the future, and these people will be running the show and setting the rules, at which point anyone who thinks that pirating is illegal will be considered the "old and dying dinosaurs" that everybody else is laughing at.

I guess my point is, that it is really entirely unimportant what you or me or any "adult" considers right or wrong, because if we want to keep evolving with the world, we really need to take some of our cues from the coming generation.

That's as much as saying that (very) young people are being raised with the notion that taking and eating candies in the supermarket is okay, and as they will become shopkeepers in the future, they will give away all their merchandise and laugh their heads off when we old fossils insist on merchandise being paid for.

sajro
March 19th, 2008, 06:37 PM
That's as much as saying that (very) young people are being raised with the notion that taking and eating candies in the supermarket is okay, and as they will become shopkeepers in the future, they will give away all their merchandise and laugh their heads off when we old fossils insist on merchandise being paid for.

No it isn't. You can never run out of copies of software, so long as you have disk space. You can run out of physical merchandise, like candies, which makes it theft.

Theft means you take someone's use of something away. If I stole your laptop or iPod, you couldn't use it. However, digital 'piracy' is copying, rather than stealing. This is because both the originator and the 'pirate' can use their software/media/etc.

Thus, 'piracy' is not theft. Some may argue that you're stealing their money. In that case the response is "Well, if I stole their money, why can't I use it?" It's not like you physically have their money in your wallet.

EDIT: I applaud the moderators for their civil discussion in topics such as this and "Double standards in how staff...". They manage to maintain an egalitarian mindset and don't say "I'm a staff member, how DARE you contradict me, you lowly forum member!" It makes me happy to be part of such an intelligent and highly civilised community.

LaRoza
March 19th, 2008, 06:41 PM
Thus, 'piracy' is not theft. Some may argue that you're stealing their money. In that case the response is "Well, if I stole their money, why can't I use it?" It's not like you physically have their money in your wallet.

That is a very weird statement.

The criminal codes of the States (in the USA) are the primary source of criminal definitions.

Every state has different terms and definitions, and none follow the Model Penal Code.

"theft" would be a crime in PA (PA. CSA. Title 18 Chapter 39) and would encompass many crimes. In your state, "theft" may not be defined at all.

If one wanted to take the common law definition, the elements of piracy would not be larceny (the common law term).

aysiu
March 19th, 2008, 06:43 PM
I don't believe people who simply take software and digital music can rightly assess whether or not they would have paid money for it. Do these people also sneak into movie theaters that aren't full, with the logic that they wouldn't have paid to see the movie anyway and that the movie theater isn't losing money, since no one bought those seats anyway? Or the same deal for a music concert?

Piracy on a large scale affects business and the economy, whether the product is easily replicable or not.

popch
March 19th, 2008, 06:44 PM
Thus, 'piracy' is not theft. Some may argue that you're stealing their money. In that case the response is "Well, if I stole their money, why can't I use it?" It's not like you physically have their money in your wallet.

Eating the shopkeeper's candies is not theft. For one, in several nations there is a legal difference between taking something and consuming it and taking it without consuming or using it yourself.

Then, the shopkeeper will not miss it. If the candies are not sold by the end of some period of time, they are thrown away. Also, you perform an act of charity because someone will be spared the consumption of so much sugar or diarrhea causing sweetener.

p_quarles
March 19th, 2008, 06:47 PM
Then, the shopkeeper will not miss it. If the candies are not sold by the end of some period of time, they are thrown away. Also, you perform an act of charity because someone will be spared the consumption of so much sugar or diarrhea causing sweetener.
I hope you're not advocating stealing candy, here. It's one thing to discuss the ethics, but please don't provide or link to instructions on stealing candy. Such posts will be deleted.

:D

aysiu
March 19th, 2008, 06:50 PM
It is not up to you to decide what to do with the shopkeeper's candies just because you think you're some kind of saccharine Robin Hood. The shopkeeper owns those pieces of candies. If the shopkeeper wants to have them rot and then throw them away, that's the shopkeeper's right, and you're welcome to then dig the rotting candy out of the trash.

If I have rotting food in my fridge, burglars do not have the right to break into my apartment and steal that rotting food to save me from consumption and diarrhea. I'm in charge of my own food and possessions and my own health. I don't need stealthy small-big brother to watch out for how I use my own possessions.

sajro
March 19th, 2008, 06:50 PM
I don't believe people who simply take software and digital music can rightly assess whether or not they would have paid money for it. Do these people also sneak into movie theaters that aren't full, with the logic that they wouldn't have paid to see the movie anyway and that the movie theater isn't losing money, since no one bought those seats anyway? Or the same deal for a music concert?

Piracy on a large scale affects business and the economy, whether the product is easily replicable or not.

This part I cannot comment on. We differ greatly here in that I have a very liberal thought that all art (including software; programming is an art), like information, should be free of cost and limitations. I feel no people are expressly superior to others and thus noone has the authority to decide what another may do in their own home, including what they may or may not do with said "art." This, I guess, is similar to the libertarianism advocated by Eric Raymond.

Open Source is ideal for my view, because nothing is hidden from you, noone may secretly control you, and you can do whatever you want, as long as you continue the chain of freedom.

There are my thoughts on the subject. (BTW, A.Y., love your essays. Very thoughtful. It's probably on your site, but I didn't find it; are you a professional writer?)

rune0077
March 19th, 2008, 06:50 PM
That's as much as saying that (very) young people are being raised with the notion that taking and eating candies in the supermarket is okay, and as they will become shopkeepers in the future, they will give away all their merchandise and laugh their heads off when we old fossils insist on merchandise being paid for.

No it's not. That's saying that as a person grows up, they take the moral standpoint of their childhoods with them into adulthood. To wit: my grandparents had a very different view of sex, marriage and having children than people of my generation. When I was a teenager, it was no longer socially unacceptable to have sex outside of marriage, and yes, we did laugh at our grandparents when they made such claims. Now that my generation is "in charge", single mothers are considered strong and interdependent and being congratulated rather than scorned, and people who insists on scorning them are in turn being called prudish and old-fashioned. I meant to imply, that I feel fairly certain that software piracy will undergo the same type of moral change that sex outside of marriage did during mine and my parents generation.

sajro
March 19th, 2008, 06:57 PM
I propose a question, continuing the candy theme.

If I were to download a movie from a BitTorrent swarm, both I and the owner of the movie's copyright would have use of it, as opposed to if I went into his office and took the only copy of the movie he had, which would be theft.

Now, if one were to steal a Hershey's bar, then the shop no longer has use of it and it is theft. However, my question is:

Do you think it would be theft to look at the ingredients/recipe for the candy but not buy it, then go home and make it yourself? This could be likened to 'digital piracy,' because both parties maintain use of the product in question.

aysiu
March 19th, 2008, 06:58 PM
This part I cannot comment on. We differ greatly here in that I have a very liberal thought that all art (including software; programming is an art), like information, should be free of cost and limitations. I feel no people are expressly superior to others and thus noone has the authority to decide what another may do in their own home, including what they may or may not do with said "art." This, I guess, is similar to the libertarianism advocated by Eric Raymond. Thank you for recognizing our difference in assumptions. I agree with that as a lofty ideal to strive toward, but I also believe that you cannot just demand that others adhere to your goals or visions of utopia. I would certainly have the world be a very different place if I were to have it my way, but I also believe in adhering to society's rules within reason, and most rules about possession, theft, and access are ones that I think are reasonable for the time being.



There are my thoughts on the subject. (BTW, A.Y., love your essays. Very thoughtful. It's probably on your site, but I didn't find it; are you a professional writer?) I am not a professional writer, but I appreciate the compliments. I just write for fun.

popch
March 19th, 2008, 06:58 PM
I feel fairly certain that software piracy will undergo the same type of moral change that sex outside of marriage did during mine and my parents generation.

By which you mean, of course, that in the future anyone will admit to having it done, while today no one admits it even if it's frequently done?

Go and have a look at your birth registries and do a quick correlation with the marriage registry of your grandparent's generation.

aysiu
March 19th, 2008, 07:00 PM
Plenty of people admit to software piracy and sex outside of marriage now... at least where I live.

sajro
March 19th, 2008, 07:01 PM
but I also believe that you cannot just demand that others adhere to your goals or visions of utopia

Are you saying I implied such an idea of force? I think that would be contradictory with allowing one to do as they please, within lines of decency (so no Michael Jacksons run around freely). I do not believe this is what you meant, but I would like some clarification.

rune0077
March 19th, 2008, 07:04 PM
By which you mean, of course, that in the future anyone will admit to having it done, while today no one admits it even if it's frequently done?

Go and have a look at your birth registries and do a quick correlation with the marriage registry of your grandparent's generation.

Yes, that would be exactly what I meant: that it would go from being a controversial topic that can arouse this much attention from an internet forum (not to mentioned getting people charged for criminal activity), to be something openly accepted and discussed without raising an eyebrow.

popch
March 19th, 2008, 07:05 PM
including software; programming is an art

off topic, but still: what makes you say so? Have you any experience in that art form?

aysiu
March 19th, 2008, 07:06 PM
Are you saying I implied such an idea of force? I think that would be contradictory with allowing one to do as they please, within lines of decency (so no Michael Jacksons run around freely). I do not believe this is what you meant, but I would like some clarification.
Let me put it this way.

You believe that art should be open to all. The artist believes her art should be open to those who pay.

You then, according to your beliefs, "steal" (or whatever word you think is most appropriate) the art from the artist.

Well, that's kind of demanding the artist adhere to your vision of art as being free and open without really respecting her wishes.

If I'm reading you wrong here, please correct me. I'm more of a Torvaldsian than a Stallmanian in this respect. I believe whoever writes or commissions the code should choose the license, and by extension that that license should be respected. While I would love for people to create open and free art, programs, music, etc., if the artists and creators choose to release their works under a restricted license, I will respect that license.

sajro
March 19th, 2008, 07:13 PM
off topic, but still: what makes you say so? Have you any experience in that art form?

Very little, sadly. I'm working on simple project to learn Python and I have a working knowledge of PHP, HTML (not programming, I know, but important), and some JavaScript. However, I don't have as much opportunity (due to school) to learn these things as I'd like.

@aysiu: It is difficult for me, as a 13-year-old to take into consideration the viewpoints of someone older than I am. It's difficult for me to "put myself in your shoes," I guess you'd say.

I'll have to say I'm not quite like Stallman. More like Raymond (yep, I'll reference him again!). I respect peoples' right to make money and I support that. If a piece of software is extremely good, I will donate to the developer/foundation. If I enjoy music and want a physical backup, I may buy the CD and I would go to a favorite artist's live performance. I myself am a musician and take the left-leaning stance on my own stuff; it's more about getting my message out and less about what I get [superficially] from it.

What I don't respect is people thinking they have a right to come to my home and tell me what I'm doing with what I own is wrong.

OrangeCrate
March 19th, 2008, 07:18 PM
This thread is heading south fast. I think I'll move on...

Thanks for the conversation.

:)

lavinog
March 19th, 2008, 07:25 PM
do[/I] see ethical issues in pirating, but I doubt my kid brother does, nor any of his friends and peers. Go ten years into the future, and these people will be running the show and setting the rules, at which point anyone who thinks that pirating is illegal will be considered the "old and dying dinosaurs" that everybody else is laughing at.

I guess my point is, that it is really entirely unimportant what you or me or any "adult" considers right or wrong, because if we want to keep evolving with the world, we really need to take some of our cues from the coming generation.

I saw this in one of my classes. When asked about if piracy is ethical or not, the younger students said there is nothing wrong with piracy while the older students insisted that it was wrong.

I think it either has to do with the younger group being the internet generation where the internet always existed, or the older group has gained the experience of putting a lot of hard work into something and not gaining anything from it.

I don't know about other countries, but the American dream is about being rewarded for hard work...If I am a software company that makes it known that payment is required to use my software...then it should be unethical to pirate it.
The fact that piracy is overlooked shouldn't mean that the owners are ok with it...there is really nothing they can do about it. One issue with piracy is the redistribution of software...people would crack wpa on software and resell it as a cheaper alternative. In this case you can't argue that the software company didn't lose any money. What is worse is that this happens to the open source community too. Many open source software is recoded in to proprietary software and sold to unknowing consumers.

I am not a fan about paying over $100 for an operating system...most people don't think they should because they don't get any entertainment value from the operating system. What is great is I have an open source alternative to the major software out there...something that I wish I knew about 20 years ago. (Microsoft will still audit companies that use MS-DOS.)
People I come across that don't think that pirating is wrong are usually happy to switch to things like open office and other alternatives , because I think they know it is wrong, but money is just not available to buy what they think they needed.

Artificial Intelligence
March 19th, 2008, 07:43 PM
Now to the lighthearted post: http://youtube.com/watch?v=Yz-grdpKVqg

:lolflag:

sajro
March 19th, 2008, 07:47 PM
Now to the lighthearted post: http://youtube.com/watch?v=Yz-grdpKVqg

:lolflag:

You gotta love Weird Al! He's great at subtle sarcasm (...artists just like me/How else can I afford another solid gold Humvee?) while appearing sincere. Reminds me of the South Park episode about music and 'piracy'.

dptxp
March 19th, 2008, 07:59 PM
What happens when we discuss about some software developer encouraging piracy in indirect way ? What happens if we express our thought that it does so to keep competition down and to make its own software popular ?

Is it advocating piracy ?

sajro
March 19th, 2008, 08:05 PM
@dptxp: Nah, they're just tolerating it until they can exploit the people doing it.

eye208
March 19th, 2008, 08:14 PM
Piracy on a large scale affects business and the economy, whether the product is easily replicable or not.
Copyright on a large scale affects cultural diversity (http://www.wired.com/culture/lifestyle/news/2001/11/48625), education (http://www.futureofthebook.org/blog/archives/2006/02/drm_and_the_damage_done_to_lib.html), scientific research (http://www.cs.cmu.edu/~dst/DMCA/Gallery/index.html) and free speech (http://archive.salon.com/tech/log/2001/08/31/dmca_animals/index.html). Ultimately it will turn your country into a police state (http://news.zdnet.co.uk/itmanagement/0,1000000308,39238422,00.htm). Once this happens, business and economy will be your least concerns.

Forrest Gumpp
March 19th, 2008, 08:24 PM
It is just a matter of semantics, but I would rather not think of MS's philosophy as "supporting piracy", but more of a strategy of simply giving away the product, with long term penetration goals in mind.


In the context of international trade, the strategy you refer to is known as 'dumping'. When it occurs, it is generally done with the deliberate intent of destroying another's trade in an erstwhile free market. It is generally accompanied by, or leaves a legacy of, distortions of the market that are ultimately to no one's advantage.

Language is generally accepted as being a non-proprietary basis for communication between human beings. Much of such communication is now intimately intertwined with digital technology, which includes software. Microsoft's self-confessed desire to embrace software piracy in, for example, China, provided such piracy results in the widespread 'addiction' to Microsoft's process of communicating is thus easily able to be seen as an attempt to appropriate the very right of people to communicate itself.

Microsoft has thus levied war on the world: a language war. Like all would-be tyrants, one of its first resorts in trying to sway public opinion to its cause in this war has been to brand those who prefer to adopt a different, and free, process of communicating as pirates or the supporters thereof. Such threaten Microsoft's existing and intended 'tax base'!

So, provided you do not stoop to the indignity of actually advocating piracy or deliberately engaging in it, it is entirely proper and productive to discuss the subject. After all, the major symbiont in the process, the human, as opposed to digital, language happens to be English, and, as everybody knows, that doesn't belong to Microsoft, but to the King (or, as is the case at present, the Queen).

Wonder what royalties arrears Microsoft owes there?

michaelzap
March 19th, 2008, 09:57 PM
Wow this thread has really taken off while I've been away! All I've had time to do is skim it so far today, but I found a number of posts to be concise and illuminating. And I'm also impressed by the staff and community's openness in facilitating a real discussion of a touchy subject despite a great deal of fundamental disagreements and the (remote) possibility of legal consequences.

I don't really have time to formulate a proper reply, so I'll just post some random thoughts:

I have pirated software, and I don't feel the least bit bad about it. I've also snuck into movies and yes I've stolen candy. In some cases those actions may have hurt those who would've charged me for those things, and in some cases I hope that it did.

I would never steal software from a small developer or an individual programmer, and I've paid for and donated money to many such folks to support what they're doing because I found their efforts helpful and I believed they should be rewarded. And I'd never steal candy from a small business or sneak into the local café cinema (I probably wouldn't steal candy from anyone anymore, since I don't eat candy, and the local café cinema actually closed when the multiplex opened, but anyway...), but I might from a WalMart or huge multplex. I believe that large corporations and their extension of the concept of "property rights" to all aspects of life on earth are the principal causes of severe injustice and potentially catastrophic destruction of the natural environment, so actions that hurt them are positive contributions to humanity and the world in my opinion.

I don't really go around swiping candy under the illusion that I'm somehow sticking it to WalMart, of course. That would be kind of a ridiculous way to attempt to bring about social change, and probably more of an excuse to get some free candy. But the fundamental point is that not all property "owners" are created equal, and some of them assert rights that should be violated, whether or not that violation is considered a criminal act in your location.

For example, I've set up systems with pirated software for many people who otherwise would never have been able to turn their computer into a useful tool. Is the generosity of spending time and effort to help someone be able to work and communicate using their computer somehow unethical because the software was pirated? I still view such activities as good deeds, and I'm not particularly troubled if others don't agree or the law prohibits it.

Nowadays of course I can do the same thing with Ubuntu and I don't need to use any pirated software, and in addition I am able to introduce others to the FOSS community and philosophy, but that wasn't the case for me some years ago...

k2t0f12d
March 19th, 2008, 10:42 PM
There is another side as well, the GPL. Why should we expect others to respect it if we don't respect their licenses?

We don't, or at least, realistically, we shouldn't. If one could distribute software with the expectation that people would always voluntarily behave with it in ways unobjectionable to the author, no copyright would ever be required for anything anywhere. The author only licenses because of the expectation that people will not behave in unobjectionable ways, and will want to have the leverage to force compliance from those who would not otherwise comply voluntarily. The advantage of free software licensing is that its terms most closely match the natural behavior of human beings with respect to ideas, knowledge, and culture as expressed in executable computer software. The license in this case is not naturally aimed to give leverage against users, but against those who are hostile to the idea of user's having rights and might otherwise attempt to infringe upon the software's freedom. The problem with proprietary licensing terms is that its terms collide with behavior that an author can reasonably expect. The license in this case is egregious and designed solely to leverage against the user in ways that are contrary to the behavior that can be naturally expected with ideas, knowledge, and culture expressible as executable computer software.

The reality is that people everywhere all the time will use the ideas, knowledge, and culture that comes into their possession in every way that he or she wishes and is technically able to do. The license document is not sentient, and cannot dislodge itself from the medium it is distributed upon to arrest non-compliant behavior. It is easy (or at least feasible) for those who find the idea of intellectual freedom unappealing to prevent the sharing of ideas, knowledge, and culture if they can only be had in a fixed physical form. But no one cannot realistically prevent the sharing of ideas, knowledge, and culture if they are spoken (or performed) audibly in person. DRM cannot be imposed to prevent air molecules from passing the vibrations that originated from a speaker until those vibrations "check-in" as it were for compliance with the wishes of a third party unrelated to the speaking. Likewise is it scorned, reviled, and circumvented when introduced in the electronic devices with which we communicate.

In short, we as free software authors do not expect that our wishes will be respected, but make it as easy as is humanly possible for the most number of people comply by respecting their rights and their freedoms first. The proprietary license respect no user's rights and freedoms at all, and therefore is itself not respectable.

LaRoza
March 19th, 2008, 10:47 PM
In short, we as free software authors do not expect that our wishes will be respected, but make it as easy as is humanly possible for the most number of people comply by respecting their rights and their freedoms first. The proprietary license respect no user's rights and freedoms at all, and therefore is itself not respectable.

Interesting point.

KiwiNZ
March 19th, 2008, 11:10 PM
I spend a lot of time promoting open source software in the corporate world.

The objection I get time and time again relates to the cavalier attitude prevelent in open source community to law.

Believe me it is a real barrier to acceptence.

rune0077
March 19th, 2008, 11:19 PM
I spend a lot of time promoting open source software in the corporate world.

The objection I get time and time again relates to the cavalier attitude prevelent in open source community to law.

Believe me it is a real barrier to acceptence.

But again, we're talking generation gap here, since a lot of young people I've met are exactly drawn towards open source for that very same reason ("Does that mean, that if I use Linux, I can download all the torrents I want and not have to worry about malware?" - best selling point Ubuntu could ever hope for)

aysiu
March 19th, 2008, 11:22 PM
But again, we're talking generation gap here, since a lot of young people I've met are exactly drawn towards open source for that very same reason ("Does that mean, that if I use Linux, I can download all the torrents I want and not have to worry about malware?" - best selling point Ubuntu could ever hope for)
But that can change as Ubuntu grows more popular. If people want to download indiscriminantly from the internet, it will be easy for malware creators to implement social engineering-reliant malware for Ubuntu.

KiwiNZ
March 19th, 2008, 11:24 PM
But again, we're talking generation gap here, since a lot of young people I've met are exactly drawn towards open source for that very same reason ("Does that mean, that if I use Linux, I can download all the torrents I want and not have to worry about malware?" - best selling point Ubuntu could ever hope for)


That is true. And in a some years in the future that generation will hold the Corporate purse strings. Right now they don't , and there lays the problem.

Those who currently hold the purse string do not have very good view of the community. Thus affecting investment , NOW.
Can we survive ? I don't know .

rune0077
March 19th, 2008, 11:37 PM
That is true. And in a some years in the future that generation will hold the Corporate purse strings. Right now they don't , and there lays the problem.

Those who currently hold the purse string do not have very good view of the community. Thus affecing investment , NOW.
Can we survive ? I don't know .

I think we can survive, yes (should hope so), but your point isn't wasted on me and I can see how this can hinder the growth for the moment (nothing wrong with thinking ahead, though). Either way, like I said, growth isn't my major concern and as pointed out above may end up damaging Linux/Ubuntu more than it does good.

This thread may be getting a wee bit pointless, so I'm off it. I shall make my closing words wise (ha, that'll be the day). The admins and moderators are right, these forums are owned by Canonical, and hence Canonical gets to set the rules. We may not always like the rules, but to be fair, we have to play by them - if I invited you into my house, I'd also appreciate it if you followed my house-rules. To the admins and moderators: please recognize that due to the many nationalities present on the forums, and the somewhat "open to interpretation" nature of the Code of Conduct, it is not always easy for the user to understand just what these rules are - someone may be encouraging what Canonical considers illegal activities without being at all aware of this and meaning to do nothing wrong.

Well, that's as close to wisdom as you're ever gonna get from me.

k2t0f12d
March 19th, 2008, 11:38 PM
The objection I get time and time again relates to the cavalier attitude prevelent in open source community to law.

Of course not. Corporations have the money and leverage to control the law, it is completely unsurprising that they would be hostile to a community of people that reject the means of their control over society. Neither is it surprising that they are hostile to the idea that their organizations, however large, should participate as peers, rather then masters, of users in society. Forward-thinking business already supports software freedom, and I sincerely hope that your efforts to endear free software to those who find the idea of user's having rights and freedoms objectionable continue to be met with endless frustration and failure. Those organizations should be encouraged to respect software's freedom instead of expecting the users who cherish that freedom to try to endear themselves to those who are actively pursuing its repression.

sajro
March 20th, 2008, 12:30 AM
Wow this thread has really taken off while I've been away! All I've had time to do is skim it so far today, but I found a number of posts to be concise and illuminating. And I'm also impressed by the staff and community's openness in facilitating a real discussion of a touchy subject despite a great deal of fundamental disagreements and the (remote) possibility of legal consequences.

I don't really have time to formulate a proper reply, so I'll just post some random thoughts:

I have pirated software, and I don't feel the least bit bad about it. I've also snuck into movies and yes I've stolen candy. In some cases those actions may have hurt those who would've charged me for those things, and in some cases I hope that it did.

I would never steal software from a small developer or an individual programmer, and I've paid for and donated money to many such folks to support what they're doing because I found their efforts helpful and I believed they should be rewarded. And I'd never steal candy from a small business or sneak into the local café cinema (I probably wouldn't steal candy from anyone anymore, since I don't eat candy, and the local café cinema actually closed when the multiplex opened, but anyway...), but I might from a WalMart or huge multplex. I believe that large corporations and their extension of the concept of "property rights" to all aspects of life on earth are the principal causes of severe injustice and potentially catastrophic destruction of the natural environment, so actions that hurt them are positive contributions to humanity and the world in my opinion.

I don't really go around swiping candy under the illusion that I'm somehow sticking it to WalMart, of course. That would be kind of a ridiculous way to attempt to bring about social change, and probably more of an excuse to get some free candy. But the fundamental point is that not all property "owners" are created equal, and some of them assert rights that should be violated, whether or not that violation is considered a criminal act in your location.

For example, I've set up systems with pirated software for many people who otherwise would never have been able to turn their computer into a useful tool. Is the generosity of spending time and effort to help someone be able to work and communicate using their computer somehow unethical because the software was pirated? I still view such activities as good deeds, and I'm not particularly troubled if others don't agree or the law prohibits it.

Nowadays of course I can do the same thing with Ubuntu and I don't need to use any pirated software, and in addition I am able to introduce others to the FOSS community and philosophy, but that wasn't the case for me some years ago...

Glad you're back, Robin. Little John was getting bored and wants to challenge you to an archery competition.

michaelzap
March 20th, 2008, 01:04 AM
Glad you're back, Robin. Little John was getting bored and wants to challenge you to an archery competition.

Robin Hood was one of my favorite tales when I was young! It's an amazing example of Anglo counterculture in literature. Of course Robin was loyal to the true king, Richard, whereas I'd prefer freedom to a benevolent despot.

eye208
March 20th, 2008, 08:23 AM
I spend a lot of time promoting open source software in the corporate world.

The objection I get time and time again relates to the cavalier attitude prevelent in open source community to law.

Believe me it is a real barrier to acceptence.
Maybe in New Zealand, but not in Europe.

Only three weeks ago Microsoft was fined another $1.4bn (http://www.ft.com/cms/s/0/cba37560-e529-11dc-9334-0000779fd2ac.html) for its cavalier attitude to law.

Promoting open source software has never been easier.

saulgoode
March 20th, 2008, 02:35 PM
If the license of a script is scrawled in a comment in as "just mention my name if you use this for your work", I would respect it. Not out of fear of retribution, but because it is the respectful thing to do. In like manner, the EULA of Vista, which forbids virtualization is respected by me not because I think it makes sense, but because that is the license of the software and it is the right thing to do. Naturally, if an EULA required some I couldn't accept be done, I wouldn't accept it and not use the software.

That is fine that you choose to respect licensing agreements -- I personally feel the same way. But the question is whether or not the forum staff should prevent any discussion of practices which might violate a EULA in some jurisdictions.

If that is the criteria used to decide whether topics should be jailed, I would point out that many kernel developers feel that the nVidia and ATI accelerated graphics drivers violate the GPL licensing. Should the staff jail all topics which instruct people how to install these drivers?

k2t0f12d
March 20th, 2008, 11:15 PM
That is fine that you choose to respect licensing agreements -- I personally feel the same way. But the question is whether or not the forum staff should prevent any discussion of practices which might violate a EULA in some jurisdictions.

I am going to guess and say that, regardless of any other rhetorical reasons, actions against infringement taken by the staff are predicated on:

Its being noticed and reported
Likelihood of aggression

which may be right or may be wrong; however, it is realistic in the operation of a forum that cannot afford participate in expensive litigation. It also points a blazing red arrow to the extent of illegitimate quasi-state power concealing itself behind so-called "intellectual property" rights.


If that is the criteria used to decide whether topics should be jailed, I would point out that many kernel developers feel that the nVidia and ATI accelerated graphics drivers violate the GPL licensing. Should the staff jail all topics which instruct people how to install these drivers?

That is not as likely to be addressed here primarily because of the absence of the likelihood of aggression. Others can claim the high moral ground for the saintly observation licensing terms; however, the only real and present motivation to do so is primarily the threat of action. Moral compliance is unprovable, unlikely, and completely rhetorical. Unlike corporations who could care less about rights or freedom, the defenders of the GPL aren't at all likely to attack users or freedom of speech. So if nVidia or ATi drivers are in violation, that battle is likely to be taken directly to nVidia or ATi instead of the users of the software or these forums.

LaRoza
March 20th, 2008, 11:19 PM
I am going to guess and say that, regardless of any other rhetorical reasons, actions against infringement are taken by the staff are predicated on:

Its being noticed and reported
Likelihood of aggression

which may be right or may be wrong; however, it is realistic in the operation of a forum that cannot afford participate in expensive litigation. It also points a blazing red arrow to the extent of illegitimate quasi-state power concealing itself behind so-called "intellectual property" rights.


Yes, that is a pretty good guess.

This thread reminded me of this for some reason:
http://hackles.org/strips/cartoon30.png

saulgoode
March 21st, 2008, 01:05 AM
I am going to guess and say that, regardless of any other rhetorical reasons, actions against infringement taken by the staff are predicated on:

Its being noticed and reported
Likelihood of aggression

which may be right or may be wrong; however, it is realistic in the operation of a forum that cannot afford participate in expensive litigation. It also points a blazing red arrow to the extent of illegitimate quasi-state power concealing itself behind so-called "intellectual property" rights.

If such is the reasoning then what threat of litigation exists for allowing user content which suggests illegal practices? Liability may exist for hosting infringing material, but I am unaware of any statutes which would censor discussions or suggestions of infringement.

If fear of litigation is the reason for the forum's policy, the reasoning is unfounded. If the reason is the moral issue of abiding by licensing then it should be applied equally to all licensing.

LaRoza
March 21st, 2008, 01:07 AM
If such is the reasoning then what threat of litigation exists for allowing user content which suggests illegal practices? Liability may exist for hosting infringing material, but I am unaware of any statutes which would censor discussions or suggestions of infringement.

If fear of litigation is the reason for the forum's policy, the reasoning is misguided. If the reason is the moral issue of abiding by licensing then it should be applied equally to all licenses.

This forum isn't the place for such discussions.

Even if it were completely free from possible litigation the Official Ubuntu Forums is not the place for talking about or advocating violations of software licenses.

Why is this so hard to grasp? This isn't the place for it, and the UbuntuForums Code of Conduct forbids it. So don't do it.

saulgoode
March 21st, 2008, 01:19 AM
This forum isn't the place for such discussions.

This is the Feedback forum. It would certainly seem to be the place for providing feedback on how forum policy can be improved.

LaRoza
March 21st, 2008, 01:20 AM
This is the Feedback forum. It would certainly seem to be the place for providing feedback on how forum policy can be improved.

I meant this forum, ubuntuforums.org isn't the place for it.

k2t0f12d
March 21st, 2008, 01:36 AM
If fear of litigation is the reason for the forum's policy, the reasoning is unfounded. If the reason is the moral issue of abiding by licensing then it should be applied equally to all licensing.

Someone need not have any likelihood of winning a lawsuit to initiate legal actions, all they need more money to spend in court then is available to defend the forum. Admitting to and discussing the relevance of infringing acts hasn't been stopped here.

Like copyright license terms, the Ubuntu Forums terms of use cannot leap from its URL to police the forums to enforce equality in all its application. I agree with you that if infringing acts against some parties are actionable, infringing acts against all parties should be considered equally when they are discovered and reported. However, that is not realistic and shouldn't be pursued to the extent that Ubuntu Forums becomes a hostile sea of rules lawyering vomit.

As users of the software and the forum, we must afford the forum the ability to operate safety for its intended purpose. If that does not sufficiently address the needs of all of the users in all regions of the world, let's make a forum or suggest an existing forum that does.

saulgoode
March 21st, 2008, 01:37 AM
Sorry, LaRoza. I hit the Submit button by mistake and didn't finish my thought.


Even if it were completely free from possible litigation the Official Ubuntu Forums is not the place for talking about or advocating violations of software licenses.

Why is this so hard to grasp? This isn't the place for it, and the UbuntuForums Code of Conduct forbids it. So don't do it.

Whether or not a particular practice is a violation of a software license is not always clearly defined. Why should the Ubuntu forums' staff wish to designate themselves as the enforcer of an agreement between two other parties? This sets you up for the criticism of ignoring some violations while assailing others.

Do you want to have to respond to the potential illegality of software such as Mono, liblame, nVidia, OpenOffice, FFMPEG, VLC, ... basically everything that Ubuntu ships or provides in its repos? How are such patent infringement or license violation issues different from whether or not MS's EULA permits virtualization under Ubuntu?

LaRoza
March 21st, 2008, 01:47 AM
Whether or not a particular practice is a violation of a software license is not always clearly defined. Why should the Ubuntu forums' staff wish to designate themselves as the enforcer of an agreement between two other parties? This sets you up for the criticism of ignoring some violations while assailing others.

Do you want to have to respond to the potential illegality of software such as Mono, liblame, nVidia, OpenOffice, FFMPEG, VLC, ... basically everything that Ubuntu ships or provides in its repos? How are such patent infringement or license violation issues different from whether or not MS's EULA permits virtualization under Ubuntu?

Yes it does, but we do our best.

If a discussion came up on HOW to make a program that can decode commercial dvd's it would be closed, I am unaware of any legal issues with OpenOffice.

Mono isn't illegal, and that is not a grey area. Its implementation of the API outside of the ECMA standard could be contested, but it hasn't and MS had a long time to act, so they must not consider it an issue.

The EULA of Vista prohibits virtualization, I don't need to be a lawyer to see that. The laws of many countries prohibit the distribution of copies of certian media, we don't need to be lawyers.

This is Ubuntu Forums, so should we just restrict it to Ubuntu only discussions? The forums has a lot of other sections and there are some areas this forum isn't really designed to handle, so there are some not so perfectly design rules. It would be so easy to have an iron fist, but we don't.

Keep it legal, and when in doubt, don't post it.

mips
March 21st, 2008, 01:57 AM
This forum isn't the place for such discussions.


:lolflag:

gsmanners
March 21st, 2008, 02:02 AM
I would say that consulting your own "doubt" is bad advice. One should always consult a lawyer when there are legal implications.

LaRoza
March 21st, 2008, 02:07 AM
I would say that consulting your own "doubt" is bad advice. One should always consult a lawyer when there are legal implications.

I am a 20 year old, just out of college, ready to go back next month and unemployed. I participate on this forum on my spare time (which I have a lot of at the moment).

All staff have real jobs, families, and none are paid.

All of us are volunteers. If you wish to pay a lawyer to handle these things for us, fine. Contact ubuntu-geek with your proposition. Keep in mind, no money will be doled out so it has to be voluntary.

mips
March 21st, 2008, 02:07 AM
If a discussion came up on HOW to make a program that can decode commercial dvd's it would be closed, I am unaware of any legal issues with OpenOffice.


It does not have to be a discussion about how to crack dvd encryption. If we look at the DMCA for example it is not only the code but the actual program derived from that code that violates the DMCA.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/DeCSS#Legal_response

So any actual discussion about libdvdcss or howtos are in violation of the DMCA, everybody just turns a blind eye though seeing 'everybody' does it in linux world.

.

LaRoza
March 21st, 2008, 02:13 AM
It does not have to be a discussion about how to crack dvd encryption. If we look at the DMCA for example it is not only the code but the actual program derived from that code that violates the DMCA.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/DeCSS#Legal_response

So any actual discussion about libdecss or howtos are in violation of the DMCA, everybody just turns a blind eye though seeing 'everybody' does it in linux world.

.



Exemptions are granted when it is shown that access-control technology has had a substantial adverse effect on the ability of people to make noninfringing uses of copyrighted works.j

To me, it is very vague, and given that this program is used for entirely legal purposes, to watch movies we own, I find it to be entirely legal.

I know of no cases involving this, and its widespread use on Windows and Linux says to me that it is not illegal.

Of course, if you feel that these discussions shouldn't be allowed on the forum, I am sure the Forum Council would listen to you and take it into consideration.

mips
March 21st, 2008, 02:16 AM
I am a 20 year old, just out of college, ready to go back next month and unemployed. I participate on this forum on my spare time (which I have a lot of at the moment).

All staff have real jobs, families, and none are paid.

All of us are volunteers. If you wish to pay a lawyer to handle these things for us, fine. Contact ubuntu-geek with your proposition. Keep in mind, no money will be doled out so it has to be voluntary.

The above does not absolve anybody from the law.

Ignorantia juris non excusat or Ignorantia legis neminem excusat

comes to mind here. (Something I recall from first year law)

LaRoza
March 21st, 2008, 02:19 AM
The above does not absolve anybody from the law.

Ignorantia juris non excusat or Ignorantia legis neminem excusat

comes to mind here. (Something I recall from first year law)

I didn't say it did. I said it in reply to the comment we should all check with lawyers.

I am not willing to spend any time with lawyers for the sake of this forum, and would step down as staff if I had to.

mips
March 21st, 2008, 02:22 AM
To me, it is very vague, and given that this program is used for entirely legal purposes, to watch movies we own, I find it to be entirely legal.

I know of no cases involving this, and its widespread use on Windows and Linux says to me that it is not illegal.


Just because every does it does not mean it is legal in any way!II In your own country it is illegal as it circumvents the DMCA, it's pointless arguing otherwise.

p_quarles
March 21st, 2008, 02:22 AM
Just because every does it does not mean it is legal in any way!II In your own country it is illegal as it circumvents the DMCA, it's pointless arguing otherwise.
@mips: Are you licensed to practice law in the United States?

LaRoza
March 21st, 2008, 02:24 AM
Just because every does it does not mean it is legal in any way!II In your own country it is illegal as it circumvents the DMCA, it's pointless arguing otherwise.

I quoted a part of the exemption rule, in support of my view.

Not everything that circumvents the copy protection is against the DMCA, read it again.

I am not a lawyer.

mips
March 21st, 2008, 02:27 AM
I didn't say it did. I said it in reply to the comment we should all check with lawyers.

I am not willing to spend any time with lawyers for the sake of this forum, and would step down as staff if I had to.

So in ignorance you would rather have it your way than the 'legal' way when it comes down to the nitty gritty which is probably more harmfull? So if some legal dispute does happen what then?

I still don't know what 'legal' system these forums fall under though thats why I used the ''.

LaRoza
March 21st, 2008, 02:31 AM
So in ignorance you would rather have it your way than the 'legal' way when it comes down to the nitty gritty which is probably more harmfull? So if some legal dispute does happen what then?

I still don't know what 'legal' system these forums fall under though thats why I used the ''.

Ok, I will ask the Forum Council to ban all such discussions and make it an infractionable offense.

Happy?

This forum falls under the Ubuntu Forums Code of Conduct.

p_quarles
March 21st, 2008, 02:31 AM
So in ignorance you would rather have it your way than the 'legal' way when it comes down to the nitty gritty which is probably more harmfull? So if some legal dispute does happen what then?

I still don't know what 'legal' system these forums fall under though thats why I used the ''.
@mips: Please answer my question. You are making claims to certainty about what is or is not legal in the United States. On what grounds of authority are you making these claims?

mips
March 21st, 2008, 02:32 AM
@mips: Are you licensed to practice law in the United States?

No, I'm not at all. Reading the DMCA laws are pretty clear though, any code or program that circumvents copy protection mechanisms are illegal.

But, I have to add that recently there have been fair use cases regarding dvd backups where it was considered by the courts to be legal for the consumer to backup dvds under the fair use principal. I need to find those links.

mips
March 21st, 2008, 02:36 AM
@mips: Please answer my question. You are making claims to certainty about what is or is not legal in the United States. On what grounds of authority are you making these claims?

Give me a little bit of time to type a response.

I responded above and I have NO authority whatsoever.

p_quarles
March 21st, 2008, 02:55 AM
Give me a little bit of time to type a response.

I responded above and I have NO authority whatsoever.
My apologies. When I saw the last post I quoted, I mistakenly thought it was in reply to the post below my question. Obviously not, so . . . sorry.

hyper_ch
March 21st, 2008, 03:11 AM
No, I'm not at all. Reading the DMCA laws are pretty clear though, any code or program that circumvents copy protection mechanisms are illegal.

If it is as clear as you think it is, why is so much discussion about it on how to apply/interprete it?
Even if a given law seems to be worded very clear it doesn't need to be...

saulgoode
March 21st, 2008, 03:20 AM
The EULA of Vista prohibits virtualization, I don't need to be a lawyer to see that. The laws of many countries prohibit the distribution of copies of certian media, we don't need to be lawyers.

You have been misinformed -- Vista Home Basic is the only version whose EULA prohibits virtualization, and even that's dependent upon how the software was obtained (MSDN downloads permit virtualization with all versions).

I would submit that your views on the other issues I raised are likewise debatable. It is for this reason that I suggest the forum staff should reluct to choose sides in legal arguments -- especially so when the concern is not criminal law, but contractual agreements.

LaRoza
March 21st, 2008, 03:24 AM
You have been misinformed -- Vista Home Basic is the only version whose EULA prohibits virtualization, and even that's dependent upon how the software was obtained (MSDN downloads permit virtualization with all versions).

I would submit that your views on the other issues I raised are likewise debatable. It is for this reason that I suggest the forum staff should reluct to choose sides in legal arguments -- especially so when the concern is not criminal law, but contractual agreements.

I haven't read the EULA recently, but I haven't erred on the dangerous side, but of caution.

We will chose sides that are the safest in our perception, because there is nothing we can do that can't be undone on further review.

Forrest Gumpp
March 21st, 2008, 03:46 AM
Mark is no idiot. If I was to register a international company I would probably also register it in a place like the Isle of Man, just makes so much sense.

The bold emphasis is my own.

Whilst it may be wholly appropriate for the Ubuntu Forums Staff to curtail discussions or posts outright advocating illegal activities, it should be recognized that there can be good cause for questioning or exploring the limits or nature of such illegal acts. The definition of illegality frequently differs from one jurisdiction to another, and the Ubuntu community is spread across many such jurisdictions. Why then should it not be able, within the CoC, to discuss matters surrounding the ethics or definition of 'illegality'?

I think Canonical may have taken some very prudent steps to insulate the Ubuntu Forums from the threat of vexatious or 'spoiling tactic' litigation by its domiciling of the company in the Isle of Man*. Treaties existing between the US and UK with respect to recognition of certain US DRM legislation thought by both parties to apply to the Ubuntu Forums may be found to be of limited, or no, applicability with respect to the jurisdiction of the Isle of Man. Whilst the caution of Forum staff in moderating such discussions is entirely to be commended, I suggest that full advantage be taken of these insulating provisions in the interests of the whole open source community.

k2t0f12d has rightly warned of the risks of proprietorial interests effectively being able to buy the legislation they want with respect to the definitions and standards of proof of such things as piracy. The concern shown with respect to piracy by MS is, out of its own mouth, however, revealed as being utterly hypocritical. This latter fact alone justifies the spotlight, by way of responsible discussion, being put upon the issue of piracy.



*Footnote. Isn't it interesting that Canonical, as sponsor of 'Ubuntu - for human beings', should have chosen the Isle of Man as its home!

binarymutant
March 21st, 2008, 04:50 AM
We shouldn't post links to pirated material for the sake of not wanting to be in a position where someone can shut the forums down. However talking about piracy shouldn't be a problem though since it's an ethics debate not an illegal act.

Talking about piracy is fun! And so is advocating it! When someone compares downloading music to stealing candy someone should point out that candy is a physical product that has a production value while anything digital does not. It's funny because when candy is stolen there is a loss of profit but when "music" is stolen there is a gain in profit :) note: see top selling album In Rainbows by Radiohead.

Talking about ethics should be undeniably allowed here. People communicate ideas to each other, it's what we do, (even if it's talking about piracy) and if the forums were to restrict talking about ethics or other ideas, then that to me would be Canonical saying we're just consumers and not human beings. A policy against saying "go to this website where you can find pirated material" would be going against the fundamental idea and definition of ubuntu.

So linking to an actual file or torrent shouldn't happen just in case someone wants to shut down the forums but saying go search this domain name should be allowed since this is an open community.

p_quarles
March 21st, 2008, 04:55 AM
So linking to an actual file or torrent shouldn't happen just in case someone wants to shut down the forums but saying go search this domain name should be allowed since this is an open community.
Linking to or suggesting torrent trackers is also against the rules here.

LaRoza
March 21st, 2008, 05:05 AM
So linking to an actual file or torrent shouldn't happen just in case someone wants to shut down the forums but saying go search this domain name should be allowed since this is an open community.

This community has agreed to follow the Ubuntu Forums Code of Conduct.

binarymutant
March 21st, 2008, 05:44 AM
I must have missed that in the code of conduct, i'm looking through it and can't seem to find anything about linking or suggesting torrents, can you help me find it? It's probably right in front of my eyes too lol

p_quarles
March 21st, 2008, 05:52 AM
I must have missed that in the code of conduct, i'm looking through it and can't seem to find anything about linking or suggesting torrents, can you help me find it? It's probably right in front of my eyes too lol
You can't link to sites that contain illegal content. Linking to torrent trackers is not specifically against the rules, but suggesting such-and-such site as a way to find non-free movies/music/software is.

binarymutant
March 21st, 2008, 06:06 AM
k I found it :)

I can't believe I'm not allowed to say check out this domain name, it's not illegal and the sites I'm talking about are legal sites. I don't think saying 'hey check out this website' is the same type of advocation as saying 'hey download Metallica's new album from this torrent'

binarymutant
March 21st, 2008, 06:17 AM
Okay, so for instance I posted a rapidshare link to a file I uploaded on another thread, should I take that down? The file is a legal one.

p_quarles
March 21st, 2008, 06:20 AM
Okay, so for instance I posted a rapidshare link to a file I uploaded on another thread, should I take that down? The file is a legal one.
Linking to a legal download, regardless of the protocol, is fine. If it's not legal to redistribute, then you shouldn't link to it.

binarymutant
March 21st, 2008, 06:29 AM
You can't link to sites that contain illegal content.

It's cool that I don't have to alter that post :) but rapidshare contains lots of illegal content. So do a lot of other sites that might be talked about on the forums.

hyper_ch
March 21st, 2008, 07:56 AM
with regard to virtualization in VISTA, there's an supplement to the original licence that allows virtualization- however I haven't read all of it and what conditions are to adapt to the modified version.

Soldierboy
March 21st, 2008, 05:21 PM
The current practice in this forum reflects this fact quite nicely. You can, for instance,

* define what constitutes piracy
* report that it is being done in some parts of the world or some social strata and so on
* report that it can be difficult or easy to do
* boast that you have done it


Untrue for some mods. I recently had a thread closed for "boasting that I had done it" without advocating others to do it. I provided no links or instruction and actually no details beyond the "simple boast".

popch
March 21st, 2008, 05:50 PM
Untrue for some mods. I recently had a thread closed for "boasting ...

What you are quoting was my opinion which in no way reflects the opinion of 'the management' here.

Since I vented this opinion, someone pointed out (within this very thread) that it was difficult to draw the line between 'boasting', 'advocating or 'encouraging'.

Soldierboy
March 21st, 2008, 05:56 PM
Since I vented this opinion, someone pointed out (within this very thread) that it was difficult to draw the line between 'boasting', 'advocating or 'encouraging'.

+1 I agree, it can be difficult to differentiate sometimes. Just wish there were better-defined terms for this. Which, I presume, is what this thread is all about. Didn't read the whole thing.

mips
March 21st, 2008, 06:56 PM
My apologies. When I saw the last post I quoted, I mistakenly thought it was in reply to the post below my question. Obviously not, so . . . sorry.

No problemo :)

wordchisler
March 21st, 2008, 08:46 PM
Re: Microsoft "hypocrisy" & "support" of piracy
Are you sure the quote mentioned expressed support of piracy and not a confident anticipation of punitive damages without court fees? "Go ahead, steal it now, you'll pay later...big time." He laughs best who laughs last.

As for the next generation growing up and taking over, where are all those strikingly dressed hippies? People sometimes get wiser when they grow older. Besides, it is foolish to assume it should be so because it will be so. Change is not always good.

Re: free art...
Few 13-yearolds have to earn a living. If you don't have to earn a living, you can share your work freely. When you have no commitments to pay, no bills for heat, rent, light, car, etc., you do not need payment for your labors: your art. [You also do not need to make anything worth paying for. ;)] You have a right to share it, if you wish, but you should not expect, let alone force, others to share their work.

Software, books and art are in someways a service, not just a bunch of code or words on the page. The creation is a result of time, labor and effort invested in coming up with that combination. The author/artist/musician/developer may still have their code, but you cannot give them back a portion of their time.

If something is not worth the price asked, make the point by not buying it. If you take it, your actions drown your words, there was value in it.

P.S. I do not believe discussion and advocacy are the same thing. Here's part of why: The Bible mentions murder. The Bible talks about a lot of instances of murder. No respectable student of the Bible will argue that it advocates murder.

Personally I found some discussions on the question of what is legal and why were helpful. ubuntu restricted dialogs do not explain what the restriction is nor where it applies. This makes it difficult for a new user who wants to abide by the laws of his country and by his word, i.e. his commitment to any EULAs. So, I certainly hope the CoC does not mean no discussion of legal questions at all.

Forrest Gumpp
March 21st, 2008, 10:02 PM
Striving to remain true to both topics in this merged thread, I would like to raise the question as to whether the very use of Linux, as an entirely independently developed OS that just happens to be an enabling technology by which some forms of copy prevention of other proprietary software can be rendered useless, constitutes 'piracy'?

I suspect the answer from this community would be a resounding 'no'.

Given that, it would seem advisable for Linux users to have an accurate understanding of just how use of the OS of their choice might be claimed to constitute or facilitate piracy, in order that they may be able to prepare to defend themselves against such accusations in those jurisdictions where the use of anything capable of defeating copy prevention measures is declared to be illegal.

Where else but in forums such as this can users of Linux come to such understanding? In doing so, in preparation of their own defence, must they not also be able to discuss the very manner in which copy prevention measures may be, whether intentionally or inadvertently, defeated through the use of Linux? They would have this right in court in the USA, where it seems such claim to illegality is most likely to be first tested. Why not then in free public discussion in anticipation of the need for such defence, when threats of such litigation have already been intimated?

To now fail to accurately reveal just how copyright or patent infringement may be claimed to be occurring would be to leave Linux users at the mercy of the fear, uncertainty, and doubt (FUD) that the proponents of proprietary software and extenders of copyright monopoly have already created. Should it be that this FUD campaign is about to be exposed for what it really is, blustering bullying bluff, it is doubly important that the Ubuntu community understand in advance that it does not have to do any deal with the proponents of the FUD, which is probably the next tack such could be expected to take in confrontation of what is simply a better system and more equitable business model, Open Source.

If the Ubuntu Forums code of conduct is genuinely restrictive of such responsible and legitimate discussion, then I respectfully suggest it may be time for such restrictiveness to be eased. Moderators should not have to be the meat in the sandwich in what is essentially an exercise of the right to preparation of a legal defence.

LaRoza
March 21st, 2008, 10:15 PM
No problemo :)

What language is this?

(Curious, because I only know of "problema" in Spanish and Portuguese)

sajro
March 21st, 2008, 11:55 PM
When someone compares downloading music to stealing candy someone should point out that candy is a physical product that has a production value while anything digital does not

I did. :)



Linking to or suggesting torrent trackers is also against the rules here.

Torrent trackers in general? What about ones like *certain tracker with the initials LT* that only host legitimate download (in that one's case, Linux isos).

It was explained on pages 15 and 16, though. Just put my comments in on it, though.



Re: free art...
Few 13-yearolds have to earn a living. If you don't have to earn a living, you can share your work freely. When you have no commitments to pay, no bills for heat, rent, liht, car, etc., you do not need payment for your labors: your art. [You also do not need to make anything worth paying for. ] You have a right to share it, if you wish, but you should not expect, let alone force, others to share their work.

Not to put words in your mouth, but are you saying that I, as one who hasn't had to pay my own way (as of yet), cannot comprehend the value of money?

Here's where my 'art is art, not business' raving comes in: I think that one who does art, not for the love of art, but for the love of money, has not produced anything worth paying for. Reiterating something I mentioned before, it's greed to say "I made this beautiful song!" and then when someone asks to hear it, say "Only if you pay me 99 cents and don't sing it to your friends." As said before, by many people (and demonstrated by Radiohead and Nine Inch Nails), if the art is good and the artist did it for the love of art, then many people would donate to encourage the artist to continue their work.

Think of software as art (which many, myself included, would argue it is). Now think of the guy who works for Novell but develops Linux drivers at no cost to H/W manufacturers (don't remember his name...) on company time. Novell realizes this benefits them (via SuSE) and pays him in a donation manner. I say donation b/c they are not getting sole direct benefit but in a roundabout way are benefiting.

Now, replace that guy with a band and Novell with a fan. The fan donates to the band to encourage them to create more music, which will benefit the fan and others b/c they will enjoy the music (like Novell and the rest of the Linux community will enjoy the drivers).

The post below yours (by Forrest Gump) seems to help my argument. Since the developers can't get their time back, does that mean we should all pay to use Linux?

To extend on FG's mention of OSS being better. think of software as music and Open Source as Creative Commons and similar licensing. Both are better because they are freely available. Nothing is hidden from you and you can scrutinize the stuff before you trust it (in software) or donate/pay (in media).

When I do need payment, I should do work. Retail, systems administration, construction, etc. That's work! Art is creativity and fun. The fact an artist can live on his art should mean he's absolutely extraordinary, not that he has a good marketing and legal scheme.


What language is this?

(Curious, because I only know of "problema" in Spanish and Portuguese)

It's Tex-Mex. That's what happens when Americans get hold of a language; we morph it into idiomatic sayings untrue to the original language.

LaRoza
March 21st, 2008, 11:59 PM
Torrent trackers in general? What about ones like *certain tracker with the initials LT* that only host legitimate download (in that one's case, Linux isos).

It's Tex-Mex. That's what happens when Americans get hold of a language; we morph it into idiomatic sayings untrue to the original language.

No, you can link to any site that doesn't go against the CoC.

For example, someone linked to a torrent tracker for a legal...thing (don't remember what), but on that tracker's main page were blatent links to illegal content, and it was full of illegal software. So I edited it out (no infraction).

Understandable, I guess (but the poster wasn't American), because english doesn't have gender for random nouns.

k2t0f12d
March 22nd, 2008, 12:17 AM
Re: Microsoft "hypocrisy" & "support" of piracy
Are you sure the quote mentioned expressed support of piracy and not a confident anticipation of punitive damages without court fees? "Go ahead, steal it now, you'll pay later...big time." He laughs best who laughs last.

Neither case is respectable. The alternative that you've raised is much more despicable. That corporate troglodytes would hope for infringement with which to pursue punitive litigation is repugnant.


As for the next generation growing up and taking over, where are all those strikingly dressed hippies? People sometimes get wiser when they grow older. Besides, it is foolish to assume it should be so because it will be so. Change is not always good.

Change wasn't good. Prior to Edison, culture, idea, knowledge, and beauty was a thing that must be shared to have value. Culture was an acutely perishable thing, consumed (if you want to think of it as being consumed) in a place at a time between people indistinctly differentiated as makers and consumers. The makers and creators earned through personal relationships with those that appreciated their work. After Edison, culture became a product. No longer a communion between people, but a thing alienated by the distributors from its makers.


Re: free art...
Few 13-yearolds have to earn a living. If you don't have to earn a living, you can share your work freely. When you have no commitments to pay, no bills for heat, rent, light, car, etc., you do not need payment for your labors: your art. [You also do not need to make anything worth paying for. ;)] You have a right to share it, if you wish, but you should not expect, let alone force, others to share their work.

If that were so, how were creators able to earn a living prior to the technical ability to fix culture to a tangible medium?


Software, books and art are in someways a service, not just a bunch of code or words on the page. The creation is a result of time, labor and effort invested in coming up with that combination. The author/artist/musician/developer may still have their code, but you cannot give them back a portion of their time.

If it were not worth the expense of time, the creator would not have spent it to begin with.


If something is not worth the price asked, make the point by not buying it. If you take it, your actions drown your words, there was value in it.

Unfortunately, I have to look more deeply into those relationships then you are apparently willing to do. My objections are expressed by refusing to buy music or movies. Not because there isn't any value in the work (although that is frequently the case), but because the money exchanged for the work does not primarily support the creator. It primarily supports the distributors who have nothing to do with the creative process, repress more creators then they render, exclude people from culture and beauty based on their ability to pay, and do this through a distribution model that is obsolete in the digital age and cannot survive in a free market economy without statutory intervention.

The idea is not to prevent the creator from earning. It is to take the control and the benefit of the created work from the distributors whose distribution model is dead and are no longer needed in a digital society they cannot survive in without statutory interventions granting them quasi-state control, and return it to the creators.

Without militaristic control by distributors of culture over all of the hardware and networks of the world, sharing that is propagandized as piracy today will become the standard distribution channel of tomorrow. The distributors do not spend their heaps and heaps of cash proselyting for the view that sharing is theft because they are afraid that n percent of the population will use for free, but out of the fear that 100% of the creators will leave once they figure out that most of them can do better on their own then in the current slavery in which they are being kept by the culture vultures.

mips
March 22nd, 2008, 12:45 AM
What language is this?

(Curious, because I only know of "problema" in Spanish and Portuguese)


No idea as to the language, Arnold Schwarzenegger used it in Terminator.
There are short .wav clips of it on the net.

Ever since I heard that in the movie I almost always say 'no problemo' instead of 'no problem'

k2t0f12d
March 22nd, 2008, 12:52 AM
When I do need payment, I should do work. Retail, systems administration, construction, etc. That's work! Art is creativity and fun. The fact an artist can live on his art should mean he's absolutely extraordinary, not that he has a good marketing and legal scheme.

Hear, hear. I would just like to add that creation is not exclusively fun. I am trained in fine art, i.e. drawing, painting, sculpting, etc, and am presently training in software development. In the act of creation, once the initial idea is grasped, the fun ends and the work begins. It is very hard to see any project through to fruition, in art or computer science. It is because the act is not trivial and requires effort that the end result is valuable to the creator.

However, it is also utterly absurd to assume that fortunes beyond the grasp of mere mortals must be guaranteed to provide the incentive to create. How much does a musician need to be able to earn to make music exclusively? In a society where distribution is easy and free, more creators of every genre and skill level will have the opportunity to earn at least enough to quit their day jobs.

LaRoza
March 22nd, 2008, 01:10 AM
No idea as to the language, Arnold Schwarzenegger used it in Terminator.
There are short .wav clips of it on the net.

Ever since I heard that in the movie I almost always say 'no problemo' instead of 'no problem'

My favourite movie (Terminator 2), I have many copies of it (I collect it) and know it by heart.

I figured since you were not in the USA, the movie didn't inspire it, and I thought it was a real phrase somewhere.

Quoting my favourite movies gets you a star, if only I knew how to get that icon...

wordchisler
March 22nd, 2008, 02:45 AM
[Linux developers volunteered their time. The choice may prove their generosity, it does not prove their effort was not valuable work worth payment. The company mentioned feels the volunteer's work is worth paying for, and, in effect (donating), pays him. They have the right to say, "no, not on our time." He has the right to request payment, but elects not to. The company is showing his work is worth something.


When I do need payment, I should do work. Retail, systems administration, construction, etc. That's work! I beg to differ, construction not an art? Retail, are you refering to selling something fashioned (made) by someone? ;)
Art is creativity and fun. The fact an artist can live on his art should mean he's absolutely extraordinary, not that he has a good marketing and legal scheme.I think the concept of art and artist has diminished, maybe because the CDs call everyone 'an artist'. The carefree tinkerer and one who works at his art are not the same thing. I doubt software development is sheer fun even for someone who does it for fun. Having a fixed bug return in a new version? A bug you can't figure out? Having to think through the code, plan it, design it. The value of work is in the quality of what is produced, not in the kind of product or reason for its production.

sajro
March 22nd, 2008, 03:23 AM
I beg to differ, construction not an art? Retail, are you refering to selling something fashioned (made) by someone? ;) I think the concept of art and artist has diminished, maybe because the CDs call everyone 'an artist'. The carefree tinkerer and one who works at his art are not the same thing. I doubt software development is sheer fun even for someone who does it for fun. Having a fixed bug return in a new version? A bug you can't figure out? Having to think through the code, plan it, design it. The value of work is in the quality of what is produced, not in the kind of product or reason for its production.

Architecture is art, but how is it art to take a bunch of planks or beams, etc. and put them together? The plan for it may be, but it's simply physical labor.

Is it really art if the person finds it work? Then the fun of discovery leaves and it's going through the motions with little passion.

As for software, it depends on whether the developer finds intellectual challenges interesting. I love puzzles and a persistent bug is an exercise for my brain. In the end, if I need help, I at least learn.


Hear, hear. I would just like to add that creation is not exclusively fun. I am trained in fine art, i.e. drawing, painting, sculpting, etc, and am presently training in software development. In the act of creation, once the initial idea is grasped, the fun ends and the work begins. It is very hard to see any project through to fruition, in art or computer science. It is because the act is not trivial and requires effort that the end result is valuable to the creator.

However, it is also utterly absurd to assume that fortunes beyond the grasp of mere mortals must be guaranteed to provide the incentive to create. How much does a musician need to be able to earn to make music exclusively? In a society where distribution is easy and free, more creators of every genre and skill level will have the opportunity to earn at least enough to quit their day jobs.

Well said!

Forrest Gumpp
March 22nd, 2008, 05:20 AM
It would be a shame if all the attention given to piracy, or claims thereof, in this discussion was to divert attention from the real issue at stake, the effective maintenance of the position of proprietary software as being the first software with which users of computers become familiar. That position has been historically occupied with respect to almost all users by the software of but one entity, Microsoft.

Other proprietary interests, in the form of third-party proprietary software developers, and various hardware suppliers, so far seem in the majority of cases to have seen their interests as being best served by assisting MS to maintain its position as Lord High Overseer of First Software Experience. They seem to be subscribing to a sort of feudal doctrine of 'prima nocta' rights over the new computer user's digital learning experience. It is this position above all else that MS wishes to defend and entrench, if necessary by giving away its operating system for no charge, just so long as no other system remains free to compete for that first user experience position.

An example of the significance of being the first system learned is afforded in the thread 'More respect for licences - Linux for MS users'. See: http://ubuntuforums.org/showthread.php?t=718287 The opening post illustrates the significance of First Software Experience very powerfully. Ironically, in this case, it is a 'hooked' MS user who is the user of pirated MS software! It is the Linux user, by and large, who is showing respect for the licencing and copyright. Should we not, as Linux users, be able to crow about this?

So don't let us be hoodwinked by claims that discussing piracy ( and yes, I mean the actual means by which it may be done) amounts to advocating it, and thereby get guilt-tripped into accepting that we are violating the UF CoC by so doing. It is just as important to show how, while crying 'piracy', some proprietary software vendors are failing to fulfil their obligations to paying customers to maintain the full functionality of the software that has been licensed. If, to permit such discussion the UF has to exploit to the limit the term 'applicable laws' at the conclusion of Clause 5. of the CoC, and if, also, it may properly be able to claim that the applicable law (or perhaps the total absence of any such law) is that prevailing on the Isle of Man, then perhaps the sooner that is made clear to all the better.

Courtesy of zcal, who posted in the above thread, here is a link you may find thought provoking. It seems to support the contention that 'prima nocta' rights is what MS is primarily concerned to retain, and that piracy is a largely irrelevant diversionary issue. http://articles.tlug.jp/Windows_Is_Free

Andavane
March 22nd, 2008, 09:20 AM
I think perhaps a comparison to something else illegal would be a good way to think about it. Perhaps purchasing drugs. I think it would not be out of line to say that it happens or I agree/disagree and why. Admitting I do it is on the line and saying how has crossed it, in my opinion.
"Illegal" acts can be quite ridiculous.
On one occasion we had a phone call that a wounded owl had been found in their garden. We had the facilities to take it in; so we fed it the right food, housed it and sheletered it and 5 days later we released it.
We were subsequently informed that our actions had not been within the law, as we did not have the right certificate/should have reported it to the appropriate office etc.
;)
Regards
John

drascus
March 22nd, 2008, 12:18 PM
OK although I don't do media on my computer except music from amazon I will put in my two cents. I have a hard time wrapping my mind around calling file sharing piracy. partly because sharing has always been presented as a good thing to me. Also partly because these data aren't literal objects. I mean If person X downloads a song there isn't one less song in the world there is just more copies of that one song. If you go and steal a record or CD from the store there is physically one less record that someone put lots of money into produce. Entire factories were set up prescious natural resources were used someone was paid to ship it put it on shelf and there is a whole infrastructure behind it. When someone downloads music online it just gets sent over a wire and there is no loss in natural resources no production time no one less object. So it is a hard thing to sort out.

hyper_ch
March 22nd, 2008, 02:02 PM
Btw, sharing is a fundamental principle of our society... how do we learn and progress? By copying and sharing...

How do babies learn to talk? The copy the sounds made by their parents... how do they learn to walk, ride a bike,...

Learning itself requires to copy and share...

binarymutant
March 22nd, 2008, 07:29 PM
The comparison of drugs and piracy I think was very nice since both of those 'criminal acts' are victim less crimes.

k2t0f12d
March 22nd, 2008, 09:27 PM
The comparison of drugs and piracy I think was very nice since both of those 'criminal acts' are victim less crimes.

I think the comparison is rather poor. Drugs are a physical substance, where ideas, knowledge, and culture are not. Obtaining and using drugs is sometimes helpful and sometimes harmful and dangerous, with or without the guidance of a doctor. Sharing ideas, knowledge, and culture is never harmful.

The only real place where free culture and drugs do meet is in the patent arena. People die of preventable disease every year due to drug patents, because the current state of patent law arrests invention and creates statutory monopoly where none should ever exist.

NightwishFan
March 22nd, 2008, 09:40 PM
I was not meaning the crime itself but my view on the appropriate view of how it should be discussed in a public environment. Piracy exists and hiding it disrespects that. Informing others how to do it can at the very least could convince someone that does not know better into breaking laws for his/her country. Informing someone that this is only legal in some places can make a difference as it is more responsible. As a whole many laws are ridiculous and have nothing to do with protection or the well being of those under it. We should look at it and from a global stand point and try to understand what are the consequences of discussing it, and if it is worth defending.

KiwiNZ
March 22nd, 2008, 09:45 PM
Drugs and piracy ? no way

A better comparrison is Alchohol prohibition and piracy.

Booze running was illegal during prohibition. Piracy is illegal in many states.

Things needed to change , prohibition needed to go as does the overly restrictive rules that bring about piracy in the honest.

Should one break the law to bring about that change ? that is up to the individual and their conscience and if they are prepared to face the consequences.

That is why it is wrong to place piracy items on a forum like this , it is taking the choice to act against the wrong out of our hands. The Forum can face the consequences with out the choice to make.

popch
March 22nd, 2008, 10:15 PM
The topic is whether talking about piracy (in this forum) is equivalent to advocating it.

One end of what is commonly called 'piracy' consists of distributing material one is not authorized to distribute. That can take several forms, and it can result in the unauthorized distributor gaining or losing money.

One end of the scale may consist of selling counterfeit copies of some work, the other end of that scale might consist of offering original or modified works for downloading.

This kind of piracy has not been discussed in this thread. I also would think that discussing it would not be worthwile, mainly for two reasons:

Distributing material without being authorized is a legal offense in practically all countries members of this forum come from. There are only very few countries where that is allowed.

Distributing without permission is a clear breach of the license agreements under which those works are offered for use, and this community is supposed to be proud of and true to the Open Source license agreements,

The right to distribute software published under one of the Open Source licenses is highly relevant, indeed one of the most important accomplishments of the movement.

Therefore, adherents of the Open Source movement can not at the same time claim that not being able to distribute software published under other licenses can not be relevant or (legally and morally) binding.

Claiming so would automatically make one of the crucial rights associated with the Open Source licenses moot.

Management summary: If the right to re-distribute software is an essential part of the desired and acclaimed license model, then the absence of that right in competing models must be essential as well.

Corollary: If you don't like the competing models, you can not ignore their license agreements; you must change their license agreements or their legal standings. You are damaging the cause of 'our' license model if you violate 'theirs'.

saulgoode
March 22nd, 2008, 10:42 PM
Management summary: If the right to re-distribute software is an essential part of the desired and acclaimed license model, then the absence of that right in competing models must be essential as well.

Corollary: If you don't like the competing models, you can not ignore their license agreements; you must change their license agreements or their legal standings. You are damaging the cause of 'our' license model if you violate 'theirs'.

No, there is a distinction between the nature of (typical) proprietary licenses and (typical) Free Software licenses. Free Software licenses do not place any restrictions upon the user besides the exclusive, monopolistic rights granted by copyright law. Unlike typical proprietary EULAs, there is no demand that the user enter into usage agreements that concede rights that aren't recognize by copyright.

For example, if Microsoft has a user agree that he will not virtualize Vista, this is not an exclusive right granted by copyright. Aside from this agreement between a customer and a corporation, there is no statute, law, or regulation which would prevent the user from virtualizing. Therefore that particular violation of the contract is not "illegal".

Analogy: Suppose I rent you some land that I own. As part of the lease terms that we both agree to, you are forbidden to fly planes over that land. Now this is something that is generally accepted as being permitted -- planes fly over private property all of the time. Should you decide to fly a plane over the leased property, you will have broken our agreement, yes -- but you will not have broken any law!

Of course, some terms of licenses do protect those rights to which a copyright owner is granted exclusive determination; and violating those terms is illegal (and all terms of the GPL only address such rights). But where a license agreement demands concessions beyond those granted to the copyright holder, violation of those terms does not constitute violation of law.

I think that the staff of the Ubuntu forums should recognize this distinction.

popch
March 22nd, 2008, 10:48 PM
For example, if Microsoft has a user agree that he will not virtualize Vista, this is not an exclusive right granted by copyright.

This may or may not be so.

However, my post which you are referring to has one and only one topic, and that is the distribution of works without being authorized to do so. This is indeed addressed by copyright or - if your country acknowledges its existence - by intellectual property rights.

saulgoode
March 22nd, 2008, 11:35 PM
Popch, my apologies it seemed like I was taking you to task for or misrepresented what you said.

I agree that distribution without proper licensing is illegal, but I disagree with an association between this and End User Licensing Agreements. If it is illegal to do something under copyright law (such as distributing copies), its prohibition in a licensing agreement doesn't make a wit of difference. It's already illegal even without a EULA. It can't be made "more illegal".

The licensing agreement can specify terms under which otherwise illegal activities could be legally pursued (which is what the GPL does), but any stipulation of usage which is not already covered by law cannot make that usage 'illegal' because of the agreement. Breach of contract, yes. Illegal, no.

popch
March 22nd, 2008, 11:43 PM
Popch, my apologies it seemed like I was taking you to task for or misrepresented what you said.

I agree that distribution without proper licensing is illegal, but I disagree with an association between this and End User Licensing Agreements. (...) any stipulation of usage which is not already covered by law cannot make that usage 'illegal' because of the agreement. Breach of contract, yes. Illegal, no.

No offense taken, no apology needed. Thank you for offering, though.

We are in complete agreement here. With regards to this topic, the license agreement serves simply to document the conditions under which the work can be redistributed.

rune0077
March 23rd, 2008, 03:26 PM
As for the next generation growing up and taking over, where are all those strikingly dressed hippies? People sometimes get wiser when they grow older. Besides, it is foolish to assume it should be so because it will be so. Change is not always good.


Change can be for the worse, but that's not the same as saying that no change is better. Once there's no longer any change, we might as well just lie down and wait for death - it'll be the end of History, so yes, change is always good, even when it's bad :). And I tend to think people get dumber when they grow older, not wiser. Kids are all geniuses, as smart as they come, and then we dumb-down as we grow up, because that's the only way the media-landscape will accept us as being a part of it (it was a child, after all, who pointed out that the emperor was not wearing any clothes). The hippies is a good example of that - they had it right, and they had it smart, but in time they gave up on the LSD and turned into just plain dumb regular folks in suits and ties.

popch
March 23rd, 2008, 03:30 PM
And I tend to think people get dumber when they grow older, not wiser. Kids are all geniuses, as smart as they come, and then we dumb-down as we grow up

Yes, granddad.

:lolflag:

jken146
March 23rd, 2008, 03:47 PM
What language is this?

(Curious, because I only know of "problema" in Spanish and Portuguese)

Italian, isn't it?

jken146
March 23rd, 2008, 03:53 PM
No, you can link to any site that doesn't go against the CoC.

For example, someone linked to a torrent tracker for a legal...thing (don't remember what), but on that tracker's main page were blatent links to illegal content, and it was full of illegal software. So I edited it out (no infraction).

Understandable, I guess (but the poster wasn't American), because english doesn't have gender for random nouns.

Where does it say in the CoC that it is forbidden to link to sites that link to, facilitate access to or advocate illegal content? It only bans posting illegal content and posting links to illegal content.

"The Pirate Bay (http://thepiratebay.org) is a torrent tracker site."
Could someone please explain to me in what way this statement breaches the CoC, if any, bearing in mind the following:
Only torrent files are saved at the server. That means no copyrighted and/or illegal material are stored by us.

IsawSp4rks
March 23rd, 2008, 03:54 PM
(it was a child, after all, who pointed out that the emperor was not wearing any clothes)

The point of the child in that story is that innocence precludes politics. The child doesn't understand why people are pandering to the king, nor what pandering is as a concept. The child only understands that the king is naked.

Wisdom brings the understanding of the myriad layers of communication that bind society. To say that adults are less wise than children is to negate the value of personal growth.



The hippies is a good example of that - they had it right, and they had it smart, but in time they gave up on the LSD and turned into just plain dumb regular folks in suits and ties.

LSD destroys brain cells and personalities.

Hippies still exist as functional, valuable, contributing members of modern society with recognition of their past exploits. I recommend you look at the documentary "Commune" and read the book "Sleeping where I fall" - a personal memoir by Peter Coyote who was a prominent member of many hippie tribes of the time. He's also a wonderful character actor.

rune0077
March 23rd, 2008, 04:08 PM
The point of the child in that story is that innocence precludes politics. The child doesn't understand why people are pandering to the king, nor what pandering is as a concept. The child only understands that the king is naked.


I think the story is related to an old Danish proverb that (roughly translated) says "from children and drunks shall you learn the truth".



LSD destroys brain cells and personalities.


According to some, maybe. Others might claim that it expands the brain and strengthen personalities. According to Ken Kesey it "unlocks the closed doors of our mind". I'm sure all three explanations describe the same process, it's just a matter of whether you think that process is a positive or a negative thing.



Hippies still exist as functional, valuable, contributing members of modern society with recognition of their past exploits. I recommend you look at the documentary "Commune" and read the book "Sleeping where I fall" - a personal memoir by Peter Coyote who was a prominent member of many hippie tribes of the time. He's also a wonderful character actor.

Thanks, I'll look it up on Amazon. I've read The Electric Kool-aid Acid Test (by Tom Wolfe) a couple of times, and frankly, it set a very high standard for any book about hippiedom trying to impress me.

popch
March 23rd, 2008, 05:53 PM
LSD destroys brain cells and personalities.

Albert Hofmann (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Albert_Hofmann) would certainly be glad to learn that. After all, he was the first person to take LSD.

He gave an interview not quite a year ago, and if his brain cells and personality were destroyed I would like to know what he was like before. He is a bit older than 100 years. Contrary to what the legend under his portrait in Wikipedia says he was not born that old.

Forrest Gumpp
March 23rd, 2008, 09:33 PM
Could we unlock a few closed doors of the mind in this discussion with respect to concern about piracy being a diversion of the attention of the open source community from a tacit policy of forced obsolescence on the part of the computer hardware industry?

Such a tacitly held policy of forced obsolescence would go a long way toward explaining the failure, or seeming reluctance, of many hardware suppliers to provide drivers to enable their products to run under Linux. For, you see, there has been a dependency of the hardware supply industry upon the dominance of Microsoft as the provider of the OS in the realm of the personal computer. They need each other.

Should once Microsoft lose its position of Lord High Overseer of First Computer Experience, its ability to force users down the 'upgrade' path by regularly introducing a new OS (with all of its incompatibilities with previous software and hardware) into the market will progressively be taken from it.

Microsoft hates tempobidirectionality* with a passion. Linux, in contrast, is a virtual Timelord by comparison.

On the Ubuntu Forums we need to talk about the mechanisms of piracy in the same way that in a military academy they have to talk about enemy capabilities and tactics. Studying it does not amount to advocating it. We need to understand the mechanisms of the tacitly tolerated piracy that has been anticipated, maybe even secretly encouraged in order to justify the legislative intrusions and control mechanisms that sustain forced obsolescence, in order to plan where best to concentrate our efforts in making Linux a viable alternative to digital serfdom for ordinary users.

Linux has the potential to render piracy ineffective. Those who oppose open source depend upon piracy for their continued dominance over this means of communication and pathway to understanding and respect. Failure to discuss all aspects of piracy will lead to a failure to overcome it: As Ubuntu users we already hold the moral high ground. We should use that advantage for all it is worth.



*Tempobidirectionality: the property (with respect to an OS) of being both forwardly and backwardly compatible with hardware and software.:)

Forrest Gumpp
March 24th, 2008, 12:15 AM
What follows is an excerpt from an address given by The Hon Justice Michael Kirby AC CMG (who has been a justice of the High Court of Australia since 1996) to the Internet Industry Association on February 21, 2008.. The High Court is responsible for interpretation of the Constitution of the Commonwealth of Australia.

This excerpt should help show the inherent respectability, indeed advisability, of discussing piracy in these Forums. It should also be observed that the government that amended the Copyright Act referred to by Justice Kirby was voted out of office in November 2007.


The excerpt from Justice Kirby's Address

"The second parable arises from something that I did in 2005 in the number one courtroom in Canberra.

The case involved the Sony PlayStation, in which a Mr Stevens attempted to get around a “technological protection measure” which Sony Corporation had put into their PlayStation in order to ensure a limitation which they decided should apply to the use that may be made worldwide of their PlayStation. (See (2005) 224 CLR 193; [2005] HCA 58.

Mr Stevens’ argument was that he was entitled to manipulate the CD-ROM in and could exercise his rights of ownership over an object that he had purchased. He argued that the law enacted by the Federal Parliament had not allowed a body like Sony to prevent him from doing so.

Ultimately the High Court decided the Sony claim could not be upheld. Mr Stevens was perfectly entitled to burn his CD-ROM and to get around the technological measure that Sony had placed in its system.

Very soon after this decision the USA called up the US-Australia Free Trade Agreement and said it is our understanding that you in Australia will give full protection to “technological protection measures”. If you don’t already give legal protection under Australian law, you’ve got to do it. And pronto! Parliament quickly amended the Copyright Act in order to do just that.

The moral of this story is that first, people have rights, which ordinarily include using their property as they see fit. This includes rights of fair usage of property, which is the subject of copyright protection. Independent courts exist to uphold those rights. They will not derogate from them unless Parliament makes its law very clear.

Now it hasn’t come back to the High Court since the law was amended. So I’m not making any predictions, one way or another, as to whether Parliament got it right on the second attempt.

But there is an issue as to the extent to which people can take copies and use copies in fair usage of copyrighted material. It’s a very important issue. It affects the balance between the protection of copyright and the protection of free speech: fair usage and the use of your own property.

The second moral therefore is that we are moving to the point in the world where more and more law will be effectively expressed, not in terms of statutes - but in the technology itself. What Professor Lawrence Lessig calls, “Code”. Embedded in the Code, on a multinational basis and effective across borders, will be effective regulation, expressed in the technology itself."



A copy of the Address to the Internet Industry Association may be viewed here: http://www.onlineopinion.com.au/view.asp?article=7082&page=0

binarymutant
March 24th, 2008, 01:03 AM
I'm still unsure on how
0089110 ea3a bebb c2d3 1602 c0d5 4044 bf29 feff
0089120 4fe6 9c62 bcc4 6caa 1a1b 45b2 ad75 f1cf
0089130 571d e24b 37b6 62a9 c68d cb72 94bd 0542 has any value. Or
mov #0,sum ; set sum to 0
mov #1,num ; set num to 1
add num,sum ; add num to sum
add #1,num ; add 1 to num
cmp num,#1000 ; compare num to 1000
ble loop ; if num <= 1000, go back to 'loop'
halt ; end of program. stop running
To me something of no economic value is free for everyone, like air. And the current rate of piracy gives me further evidence of this. The legality of the hex is unknown to me right now, it's from an mp3 :) But i'll admit that I support my favorite bands, I like vinyl :)

popch
March 24th, 2008, 10:10 AM
I'm still unsure on how has any value.


mov #0,sum ; set sum to 0
mov #1,num ; set num to 1
add num,sum ; add num to sum
add #1,num ; add 1 to num
cmp num,#1000 ; compare num to 1000
ble loop ; if num <= 1000, go back to 'loop'
halt ; end of program. stop runningTo me something of no economic value is free for everyone, like air. And the current rate of piracy gives me further evidence of this.

You are quite right, of course, with respect of the bit of programming. It does not do anything useful, does not do it at all and does not do it well. It is free of both worth and value.

Consider the case where someone wrote a program which (a) actually worked and (b) performed something useful. Assume that the person who wrote the program has learned how to do it and took a non-trivial amount of time to write it. You might just as well assume that the same person was knowledgeable about the problem the program was supposed to help solving.

For argument's sake, let's assume it was a program which lets you edit sound files.

Now consider the case where someone wanted to use a program which did exactly what the said program does.

For argument's sake, let's assume that this person was you.

You now can
either use an existing program which does the job you want done,
or you can

learn about acoustics
learn about binary representation of acoustical signals
learn about auditory perception
learn and practice to use at least one programming languages
learn to use how to program a complex piece of software
learn to build working and usable GUIs, possibly allowing direct interaction with graphical shapes
spend some additional months or years of your productive live writing said program
listen to people's experiences (including rants that your work was without worth) and spend some more months fixing bugs and adding featuresI suggest to take the second path. Then come back and tell us that your software has no value.

binarymutant
March 24th, 2008, 11:39 AM
Dare I post apache source code, or the ogg codec source, either way I wouldn't pay a dime to use ogg or apache. Now when I said worth or value I meant it in dollars (or some other currency) and as users of Free Libre Open Source Software we generally do not pay for something like an audio codec. Time and learning aren't factors in determining economic worth. Many people devote large amounts of time to learning a new video game, does that equate to economic value? To me, no. But when we're talking about value meaning emotional value that's a different story. Obviously I value air in that sense. Saying software is like air isn't a bad thing to me, I mean I need Linux like I need air.

Piracy happens everytime you sing Happy Birthday. Do you think we would still be having the same problems with piracy if the RIAA decided to pursue anyone singing happy birthday? Here's a wikipedia excerpt from Happy Birthday to You
Warner claims that unauthorized public performances of the song are technically illegal unless royalties are paid to it

Also if SCO won wouldn't this entire forum be one about piracy?

popch
March 24th, 2008, 11:48 AM
I was only joking. As anyone knows, people having learned all the prerequisites to writing complex software and spending all that time in doing so actually prefer earning their incomes as brick layers or chimney sweeps.

hyper_ch
March 24th, 2008, 11:56 PM
Interesting article today on TorrentFreak:


If you are downloading stuff you wouldn’t have bought in the first place, according to economist Karen Croxson, you are probably doing the company that created the product a big favor. You, Mr ‘Good’ Pirate, are telling your friends, adding to the media ‘buzz’ and driving up sales.
http://torrentfreak.com/good-pirates-help-businesses-sell-more-product-080324/

Forrest Gumpp
March 25th, 2008, 12:37 AM
At the possible risk of 'reporting' one of my own posts, I would like to discuss the circumvention of what may well be classed as a Technological Protective Measure (TPM).

I do not do this with any intent of violating the UF Code of Conduct, but in order to illustrate the very encroachment upon freedom of speech that upholding of TPMs serves to bring about, an encroachment risk commented upon by Justice Kirby in the quote in post # 184 of this thread. An encroachment that too wide an interpretation of the UF CoC may only serve to facilitate, leaving the field to the vendors of proprietary software to play on as they wish.

In the thread 'Whats the coolest thing you can do in Linux you cant in windows or mac?' (see: http://ubuntuforums.org/showpost.php?p=4312510&postcount=279 ) I posted the following:

"Should it be that my son was to install Ubuntu on his desktop computer (which he has), and then run virtualisation software (freely available), and install his XP thereunder, an interesting situation would come about. Due to the evident transferability of an Ubuntu Linux installation from one computer to another, it would seem that his HDD with the virtualised file image of XP on it could be transferred to my desktop computer and then be routinely used. XP would not know that it now resided in an entirely different hardware environment!

The bonds that tie an OEM version of XP to the particular hardware configuration with which the license was sold would be broken. And provided a backup copy of the virtualised XP installation file was always kept, any re-installation of XP on the computer to which the HDD is transferred could circumvent the hardware change recognition triggers built into the software that would otherwise disable the XP OS and require its re-activation!

In like manner, if with somewhat less spectacular commercial implications, the full functionality of older Windows installations once installed under virtualisation can be preserved into the future long after the original hardware upon which they came pre-installed has become obsolete or worn out.

Now it may well be that running XP in a virtual environment may be contrary to the terms and conditions of any EULA, but enforcement of a EULA with respect to a home use situation is entirely impractical. Should such enforcement nevertheless be attempted it will be largely commercially self-defeating: it is not a good business model to rely upon suing or threatening those whom you want to be your repeat customers. The only other 'enforcement' pathway would appear to be degradation of the ease of use and privacy status of users who desire, or are trapped into, continued use of XP or any successor to it.

Linux, it seems, has inadvertently become an enabling technology for effectively defeating Windows Activation."

Now I must stress that I have not actually done this! Nevertheless I was told by the geek salesgirl at 'Hardly Normal' (the computer retailer) when purchasing a laptop for my son, that this could be done.

Neither do I advocate it. It may well violate the MS EULA.

The reason it is important to be able to discuss the actual mechanism of this circumvention of 'product activation' is that it explains otherwise unbelievable or seemingly improbable conduct of MS directed to the disadvantage of its own EULA-observing customers. I suggest it is of direct interest to the Ubuntu community to know what has gone on in that remote part of the MS market that is Australia in order to assess for itself to what extent illegal or unethical behaviour has occurred, and by whom it has been practiced.

That is why, in that post, I observed:

"In this household we never violated the EULA for XP, but we have suffered the degradation of its ease of use. We were FORCED to migrate to Linux. I am now so glad that happened. Linux is the last learning curve that will have to be climbed, and I can learn on the net without spending a dollar for applications or worrying about viruses, or the performance hits of anti-virus software. Largely thanks to communities of users like those found on the Ubuntu Forums!"

MS has made it exceedingly difficult and inconvenient to effect our own entirely legitimate re-activations of XP. MS has talked of 'exceeding our allocation of re-activations', when no such limitation was ever part of our agreement. I suggest that our experience is likely to have been repeated elsewhere. I suggest MS breach of its contract with its customers, at least here in Australia, is in response to its realization that with the arrival of open source virtualization, product activation as a TPM has been rendered ineffective.

Why should my legitimate usability of their software be degraded because they see a loophole in their TPM?

And how can I explain the injustice of it in the Ubuntu Forums if by explaining the necessary detail I am at risk of breaching the CoC?

binarymutant
March 25th, 2008, 03:27 AM
And how can I explain the injustice of it in the Ubuntu Forums if by explaining the necessary detail I am at risk of breaching the CoC?
I'm not sure you would be breaching the CoC

Forrest Gumpp
March 25th, 2008, 10:03 PM
@binarymutant

It appears the proof of the pudding is in the eating. I don't think my posts so far are in breach of the Code of Conduct, and breaching it has never been my intent. A post that may outline a general pathway by which a TPM may be defeated so far remains up on the Forum boards. That it does so is a credit to the standard and philosophy of moderation in these Forums. However, do not under-estimate the pressures that Forum staff may feel themselves under with respect to this matter. Whole websites purporting to have published means of defeating Windows Activation in the past have, seemingly, been taken off the web.

Perhaps it is time, if he agrees, that michaelzap marks this thread as solved? I don't know, that is up to him. I could well understand him not agreeing, however, in the light of what he said in his opening post.




You know what really bugs me about this whole conversation? A lot of us can't really say what we believe because we'd be accused of advocating something illegal and perhaps have our posts removed or forum accounts suspended. Censorship begins when people are afraid to say what they think, and I don't see how any community benefits from any form of censorship.



He is right in what he says in his last sentence. You will note that there has been no post to confirm the effectiveness in practice of what I outlined in theory. I suggest that may well be partly because of a perception of censorship, and partly because of a well-intentioned desire to avoid attracting any adverse attention to the detriment of these Forums.

I have tried not to divert the discussion from piracy by raising the matter of TPMs, but to show how by hypocritical focus upon piracy proprietary software and hardware interests may have conned legislatures and public forums alike into doing their policing for them.

That the upholding of TPMs is at the expense of long-held rights at law is made clear in the excerpt from Justice Kirby's address. Should the Ubuntu Forums stick to their guns on this issue, they will be doing that from which at least the US and Australian legislatures have signally abdicated: defending freedom of speech, and helping to restore the 'democratic deficit' of which Justice Kirby speaks.

mips
March 26th, 2008, 01:52 AM
That the upholding of TPMs is at the expense of long-held rights at law is made clear in the excerpt from Justice Kirby's address. Should the Ubuntu Forums stick to their guns on this issue, they will be doing that from which at least the US and Australian legislatures have signally abdicated: defending freedom of speech, and helping to restore the 'democratic deficit' of which Justice Kirby speaks.

The question is what legal system do these forums adhere to. US law is no longer applicable so we might as well explore UK commom law on issues of uncertainty. Maybe this should be asked of the Canononical legal representatives? For once and for all we need to know what law 'we' fall under.

michaelzap
March 26th, 2008, 01:54 AM
I don't really consider this "my" thread, and I'm not sure if the topic will ever be exhausted sufficiently to be marked as "solved". My comment was split from another thread, and a whole lot of folks have had a lot of interesting things to say on the subject. I've been so busy since the thread was started that all I've been able to do is skim it periodically and take a few random thoughts about it along with me throughout the day.

One thing I did say in a later post and that probably bears repeating is that I feel that in general the forum staff/volunteers have done an admirable job of allowing this conversation to prosper rather than squashing the posts or viewpoints that make some of them uncomfortable or concerned.

Something else that does seem a lot more clear after all of this conversation is that the Code of Conduct doesn't really offer enough guidance for either users or moderators to know what's allowed and what might "cross the line", so unless it's rewritten to be much more specific no one should assume that their interpretation is the only or correct one.

LaRoza
March 26th, 2008, 01:57 AM
Something else that does seem a lot more clear after all of this conversation is that the Code of Conduct doesn't really offer enough guidance for either users or moderators to know what's allowed and what might "cross the line", so unless it's rewritten to be much more specific no one should assume that their interpretation is the only or correct one.

Yes, due to this being a forum used by people of many countries, it is impossible to have it perfectly clear.

That is why I said before to pretend the EULA is binding, and when in doubt don't post it.

No one ever got in trouble for following the EULA.

michaelzap
March 26th, 2008, 02:17 AM
No one ever got in trouble for following the EULA.

I'm much less worried about getting in trouble than I am about giving away my freedoms, so I don't intend to pretend that EULAs are binding.

LaRoza
March 26th, 2008, 02:23 AM
I'm much less worried about getting in trouble than I am about giving away my freedoms, so I don't intend to pretend that EULAs are binding.

Your freedoms are not restricted by EULA's. They are not forced on people. You agree to them to use software.

Unless you feel like you are entitled to such things, then you probably have other things to work out on your own.

aysiu
March 26th, 2008, 02:27 AM
I'm much less worried about getting in trouble than I am about giving away my freedoms, so I don't intend to pretend that EULAs are binding.
There's no software you're forced to install. If you don't like the EULA, don't agree to use that software according to those terms. If you don't like Windows' EULA, instead of pirating Windows, you can just use something else (like Ubuntu, Mac OS X, FreeBSD, etc.).

michaelzap
March 26th, 2008, 02:30 AM
Your freedoms are not restricted by EULA's. They are not forced on people. You agree to them to use software.

Unless you feel like you are entitled to such things, then you probably have other things to work out on your own.

Thanks for the pop psychology, but I really don't think this is a personal issue. A social and political one, perhaps, and certainly one over the limits and abuses of "ownership". If I buy software at the local store, I haven't read all of the weasel language giving the producer all the rights they declare and me nothing, and if I were to take pretty much any EULA seriously I would never agree to any of them once I started to install.

LaRoza
March 26th, 2008, 02:31 AM
There's no software you're forced to install. If you don't like the EULA, don't agree to use that software according to those terms. If you don't like Windows' EULA, instead of pirating Windows, you can just use something else (like Ubuntu, Mac OS X, FreeBSD, etc.).

Whatever you do, keep in mind we like to follow EULA's of software when trying to decided what is "legal". It is easier to say something is illegal according to the CoC, when it is explicitly stated with the software, and not some law in some locality.

Just because it doesn't always have the force of law, it is the least ambigious method we have.

michaelzap
March 26th, 2008, 02:37 AM
A whole lot of provisions in commercial software EULAs are not legal or enforceable. That's true for a lot of contracts, not just software. When one party writes the contract on their own, they will always assert every right they can imagine and try to convince the other party that that language has the force of law, when in many cases it is completely invalid (which is why there's always a separate clause allowing them to separate the provisions found to be illegal or unenforceable from the rest of the contract without invalidating the entire thing).

LaRoza
March 26th, 2008, 02:40 AM
A whole lot of provisions in commercial software EULAs are not legal or enforceable. That's true for a lot of contracts, not just software. When one party writes the contract on their own, they will always assert every right they can imagine and try to convince the other party that that language has the force of law, when in many cases it is completely invalid (which is why there's always a separate clause allowing them to separate the provisions found to be illegal or unenforceable from the rest of the contract without invalidating the entire thing).

Yes, they write it on their own, but the users agree to it.

Do whatever you want, just keep things in line with the CoC on this forum.

You have seen how the CoC is usually enforced, by the responses in this thread.

mips
March 26th, 2008, 02:41 AM
Whatever you do, keep in mind we like to follow EULA's of software when trying to decided what is "legal". It is easier to say something is illegal according to the CoC, when it is explicitly stated with the software, and not some law in some locality.

Just because it doesn't always have the force of law, it is the least ambigious method we have.

Just because some EULA states the terms does not really mean it is legally binding as many things stated by a EULA goes against most common laws, but as inorant comsumers we accept them. There have been cases where EULAs have been considered by courts to violate consumer rights.

LaRoza
March 26th, 2008, 02:48 AM
Just because some EULA states the terms does not really mean it is legally binding as many things stated by a EULA goes against most common laws, but as inorant comsumers we accept them. There have been cases where EULAs have been considered by courts to violate consumer rights.

<mod hat off>
I personally thing EULA's in most things today are very unethical. I would love to see all these restrictive laws and agreements be cast aside, but I really don't have the time to organize the revolution. I am too busy trying to usurp Matthew to do that.

p_quarles
March 26th, 2008, 02:52 AM
Just because some EULA states the terms does not really mean it is legally binding as many things stated by a EULA goes against most common laws, but as inorant comsumers we accept them. There have been cases where EULAs have been considered by courts to violate consumer rights.
Bottom line: ubuntuforums.org is not able to enforce anyone else's EULA. We only enforce the site's own Code of Conduct.

michaelzap
March 26th, 2008, 03:02 AM
Here is my principal objection to proposing that EULAs be the guide for what is acceptable on this forum: EULAs are not an impartial summary of legal use of any software. They are the software producer/seller's assertion of their rights, and they often violate other laws and the rights of the user or other parties. Making you click "OK" in order to use their software does not change this in the least.

So if you take the EULA as your guide for what is acceptable here, you are in effect enforcing the producer's version of their rights, which in many cases is much more in their favor than the actual legal status of those rights, and as a side effect you may actually be violating other laws and rights.

And that's still only talking about what's "legal", not what's "right" or "ethical"...

LaRoza
March 26th, 2008, 03:07 AM
Here is my principal objection to proposing that EULAs be the guide for what is acceptable on this forum: EULAs are not an impartial summary of legal use of any software. They are the software producer/seller's assertion of their rights, and they often violate other laws and the rights of the user or other parties. Making you click "OK" in order to use their software does not change this in the least.

So if you take the EULA as your guide for what is acceptable here, you are in effect enforcing the producer's version of their rights, which in many cases is much more in their favor than the actual legal status of those rights, and as a side effect you may actually be violating other laws and rights.

And that's still only talking about what's "legal", not what's "right" or "ethical"...

Forget I mentioned it then. It just seems from what I have seen, the EULA is the least ambigious measure.

You are right, we aren't here to enforce the EULA's of anything, but if you want to play on the safe side, that is the easiest way to do it.

michaelzap
March 26th, 2008, 03:35 AM
Forget I mentioned it then. It just seems from what I have seen, the EULA is the least ambigious measure.

You are right, we aren't here to enforce the EULA's of anything, but if you want to play on the safe side, that is the easiest way to do it.

I certainly understand that you moderators don't have clear guidelines either, so I can see why it would be appealing to use something as simple as a EULA.

LaRoza
March 26th, 2008, 03:37 AM
I certainly understand that you moderators don't have clear guidelines either, so I can see why it would be appealing to use something as simple as a EULA.

Yes, it was just a general yardstick, not a hard rule.

Forrest Gumpp
March 26th, 2008, 04:23 AM
.... if you take the EULA as your guide for what is acceptable here, you are in effect enforcing the producer's version of their rights, which in many cases is much more in their favor than the actual legal status of those rights, and as a side effect you may actually be violating other laws and rights.

And that's still only talking about what's "legal", not what's "right" or "ethical"...

That is precisely what is happening!

To compound the travesty/tragedy, Forum staff are put in the position of having (rightly) to apply the Forum Code of Conduct in the moderation of discussions of this nature. I completely agree with mips that the matter as to what legal jurisdiction it is to which the UF must answer with respect as to what defines lawful discussion and/or advocacy needs to be clarified once and for all. On the face of it, two jurisdictions would appear to be involved, the Manx, and that of the UK.

With all due respect, however, boning up on common law and Statute law applicable within the UK is likely to overlook the key point that proprietary software interests are going to be looking to the enforcement of international treaty obligations by the government in question (that of the UK), not to arguing a case in court. The citation of treaty obligations has become the stock excuse for the legislatures of western democracies to ignore their own constituencies, and legal and constitutional propriety, in settling such matters.

That's why I think its so astute of Canonical to have domiciled in the Isle of Man! (I wonder whether it has a server or mirror site on the island?) I strongly suspect there is no treaty to which the Manx are party, under the terms of which MS (and others perhaps) could duck an appearance on equal footing with the Ubuntu Forums in a court of law.

Tynwald may be headed for 'interesting times'. There may be only one way by which MS can uphold TPMs and the illegality of defeating them: arrange for the US government, as its factotum, to invade and occupy the Isle of Man, and crush the Roaring Mouse, smashing the Evil Linux Servers in the process as Weapons of Mass Distribution!

"They would have to fight them on the beaches, ......."

Ah, but I forget. It is Congress that has to levy war, not the Executive government of the US. Against such a threatening opponent, would any Congress dare doing so, at the certain risk of becoming the laughing-stock of the world?!

PriceChild
March 26th, 2008, 01:14 PM
Imagine some "illegal" material ends up on the site. (quotation marks are meant to infer its dubious as to its illegality)

Party A decides to issue us with takedown requests/threaten legal action etc. etc.

Do we:
1. Take them up on it and challenge them, spending *lots* of money which we don't have.
2. Comply.

The only reasonable action is 2... no?

If you agree the action to be taken is 2, then do you think it is better to wait for these actions be taken against us, or would it be better to take preventative measures to try to prevent any fuss, defamation etc.

mips
March 26th, 2008, 01:54 PM
Imagine some "illegal" material ends up on the site. (quotation marks are meant to infer its dubious as to its illegality)

Party A decides to issue us with takedown requests/threaten legal action etc. etc.

Do we:
1. Take them up on it and challenge them, spending *lots* of money which we don't have.
2. Comply.

The only reasonable action is 2... no?

If you agree the action to be taken is 2, then do you think it is better to wait for these actions be taken against us, or would it be better to take preventative measures to try to prevent any fuss, defamation etc.

It depends on whether you believe the material to be legal or not. If you believe it to be legal then it becomes a matter of principle and you fight it, you don't just roll over and die. One might say we are in the position we are today simply because most of us just roll over and play dead.

I do however see you point though. Legal battles are lengthy and costly, something that should be avoided where possible.

saulgoode
March 26th, 2008, 02:22 PM
Imagine some "illegal" material ends up on the site. (quotation marks are meant to infer its dubious as to its illegality)

Party A decides to issue us with takedown requests/threaten legal action etc. etc.

Do we:
1. Take them up on it and challenge them, spending *lots* of money which we don't have.
2. Comply.

The only reasonable action is 2... no?

If you agree the action to be taken is 2, then do you think it is better to wait for these actions be taken against us, or would it be better to take preventative measures to try to prevent any fuss, defamation etc.

Q: why does Ubuntuforums permit all this discussion to take place about installing an operating system that "Party A" claims infringes 235 different patents that it holds?

A: because those claims of patent infringement are unsubstantiated.

I would contend that the idea of a EULA being legally binding is likewise unsubstantiated. To the extent that a EULA prohibits action that is otherwise permitted when software is purchased, that (section of the) EULA has consistently been found by courts as an attempt to preempt copyright law and therefore non-binding (not excepting contract remedies). Can anyone show a court case which upheld the right of a EULA to prohibit fair use of purchased, copyrighted works? I can't find any.

I would suggest the court ruling in the Adobe v. Softman (http://www.linuxjournal.com/xstatic/articles/056/5628/softman-v-adobe.html) case as worth perusing; not necessarily because the ruling is universally binding, but because it provides a clear assessment of the various legal issues involved.

Some of the points addressed are: Copyright rights do not equate to property rights. Copyright controls are limited to the intellectual rights associated with acts of copying and distribution of the information, not usage or disposition of the copy of the work.
One-time payments for perpetual use of a work constitutes a "sale" -- the software is not being "leased" to the customer (this is not always the nature of licensing agreements, but still very typical of shrinkwrap EULAs).
Contracts cannot bind the parties to terms which are unavailable when they assent to the contract (e.g., "by opening this box, you agree to the terms of the license inside the box", or "by installing this software, you agree to the license terms at http://somewebsite.com/license").

The summation under PUBLIC INTEREST should also be noted for its applicability to this discussion:


This is an area fraught with conflicting policy considerations. Software publishers are desirous of augmenting the protections offered under copyright law. In this case, through the use of licensing, Adobe seeks a vast and seemingly unlimited power to control prices and all channels of distribution. On the other hand, in the absence of copyright law violations, the market can often best regulate prices and all subsequent transactions that occur after the first sale. Sound policy rationales support the analysis of those courts that have found shrinkwrap licenses to be unenforceable. A system of "licensing" which grants software publishers this degree of unchecked power to control the market deserves to be the object of careful scrutiny.

Reacting to the conventional misinformation about the legalities of EULAs would seem to be as dubious a measure with regard to the interest of the members of this forum as would be reacting to Microsoft's unsubstantiated claims of patent infringement by GNU/Linux.

My answer to the question, "The only reasonable action is 2... no?", would be that Ubuntu forums should defend the right to truthful discussion about EULAs to the same extent that they would defend GNU/Linux itself. There is no hope of eliminating the spread of disinformation if one cedes the right to criticize it.

LaRoza
March 26th, 2008, 04:29 PM
We don't have the ability. Who is going to do it?

The staff have "real life" to do with, just like everyone else.

KiwiNZ
March 27th, 2008, 02:13 AM
@saulgoode

I would rather protect the existence of this forum for its members and owners than embark on some grand crusade.

michaelzap
March 27th, 2008, 03:50 AM
@saulgoode

I would rather protect the existence of this forum for its members and owners than embark on some grand crusade.

What grand crusade are you talking about? Saul just described the context in which these forums operate and opined that renouncing your right to criticize disinformation is a self-defeating strategy. Since when did speaking the truth as you see it become a grand crusade?

The specter of possible legal action so overwhelming as to render us completely unable to defend ourselves or these forums has been raised frequently as an argument for the suppression of certain unspecified dangerous speech. Is this a real threat, or just a boogyman thrown out to make up for an otherwise thin argument? What is the actual likelihood of Ubuntu Forums being sued for any user advocating piracy?

My guess is that it's zero to none. If UF were hosting pirated materials, they could very likely be hit with cease and desist orders or even a lawsuit. But that's not at all what we're discussing here, and hyperbole has its limits.

PriceChild
March 28th, 2008, 12:23 PM
What about the image of Ubuntu that we should show, allowing illegal activities. It wouldn't look favourably on the entire distribution would it?

hyper_ch
March 28th, 2008, 12:39 PM
what illegal activites are you thinking of?

Besides, nothing is illegal until a court has declared something to be illegal.

LaRoza
March 28th, 2008, 05:44 PM
I figured since no one else invoked Godwin's Law, I would.

ShodanjoDM
March 28th, 2008, 05:52 PM
I figured since no one else invoked Godwin's Law, I would.

What's the connection between piracy and H... err.. Godwin's Law? :confused:

LaRoza
March 28th, 2008, 05:59 PM
What's the connection between piracy and H... err.. Godwin's Law? :confused:

I had a comment before that "The mods are like nazis", but I deleted to not offend anyone.

(My point being that this is a very long thread)

Forrest Gumpp
March 30th, 2008, 06:56 AM
An interesting point has been revealed in this discussion. It relates to virtualization, and, for the moment, to pre-Product Activation versions of Windows.

There was and is, to my knowledge, no prohibition against running these versions under virtualization in the EULAs that accompanied them as, in most cases, OEM licences. It goes without saying that the particular copy of the OS concerned was only licensed to be run on one computer. So am I right in thinking that, provided one only ran such a copy of an OS, virtualized, on one computer, one would not be breaching the terms of the EULA?

For the sake of this discussion, I am going to presume the answer to that question to be 'no, you would not be in breach of the EULA'.

So I will assume that a Linux distro is being run on the computer in question, and that the relevant copy of Windows is being run on it in VirtualBox under the said Linux. All quite legit.

Now it just so happens that the computer in question is in an internet kiosk, or in the common room of live-in student accomodation somewhere. It also just so happens that a feature of Linux is that it is a multi-user OS, and at the same time has the capacity to be a 'multi-seat' installation.

Should this one computer have been set up so as to be a multi-seat installation, it would appear that as many different users as there are 'seats' could be using the virtualized Windows OS thereon at the same time, each in their own way, subject only to any restrictions imposed by resource limitations of that particular hardware.

Only one computer is involved, and only one (legitimate) copy of Windows. No provision of the EULA would thus appear to be being broken. Could this multi-seat use of the Windows OS on just one computer by any stretch of the imagination be called piracy?

Or won't this virtualized OS run under multi-seating?

popch
March 30th, 2008, 08:43 AM
Only one computer is involved, and only one (legitimate) copy of Windows. No provision of the EULA would thus appear to be being broken. Could this multi-seat use of the Windows OS on just one computer by any stretch of the imagination be called piracy?

There is at least one provision of the EULA broken, namely that one copy of Windows must be used by at most one user at a time.

If you want concurrent use, you have to buy the server edition. You also have to pay 'client access licenses' for each user connecting to and using a session of that OS.

I seem to remember that this even applies to the database software running on that server. You have to pay for each user using the database.

Forrest Gumpp
March 30th, 2008, 12:03 PM
There is at least one provision of the EULA broken, namely that one copy of Windows must be used by at most one user at a time. .

Who is the user?

To be a little more specific, the 'user' would appear to be the person or entity who, legitimately being the licensee, decided in their own wisdom that the copy they had licensed would be run under virtualization on a Linux computer. No law or contractual agreement broken there!

As such a user, it would appear that if such user/licensee chose to place the Windows OS within a virtual environment for purposes best known to the said licensee, such would be a decision to which those who licensed the product would, whether they later liked it or not. be one which they would be legally obligated to observe!

Just so we all understand the hypothetical situation, what we have here is a situation in which the licensee of the Windows OS is the proprietor of either an internet cafe, or the overseer of a student commonroom. As the proprietor/administrator that person or entity is the user! Only one copy of Windows is being used by this user. What law or contractual agreement is being broken?

That it may be a feature of Linux that multiple accounts may be opened within that OS to access a virtualized Windows installation is simply something that was seemingly unanticipated by those who constructed the EULA. Caveat Would Be Dictator!

popch
March 30th, 2008, 02:26 PM
the 'user' would appear to be the person or entity who, legitimately being the licensee, decided in their own wisdom that the copy they had licensed would be run under virtualization on a Linux computer. (...)

Only one copy of Windows is being used by this user. What law or contractual agreement is being broken? (...)

That it may be a feature of Linux that multiple accounts may be opened within that OS to access a virtualized Windows installation is simply something that was seemingly unanticipated by those who constructed the EULA.

I can't be bothered to re-consult the EULA, since I do not have one at home, I believe. However:

The user is not any one out of an undetermined number of possible persons, such as the one taking the boxed Windows out of the shelf in the supermarket, the one installing it or requesting the license key and not even the one who pays the bill. The user is the person who uses the software. Apart from quipping we all know what 'using an OS' constitutes.

I have no doubt that the EULA - if consulted and not hypothesised about - would state that for each license acquired there could be at most one user at any one time.

Running several instances of the same software would - under this term - consist of a breach of the EULA.

Several users accessing and using one or more user accounts within one running instance of Windows would be a breach of the EULA, too.

saulgoode
May 24th, 2008, 09:16 PM
An interesting development (http://arstechnica.com/news.ars/post/20080523-court-smacks-autodesk-affirms-right-to-sell-used-software.html) which, while not addressing piracy, does have significant ramifications with regard to the legitimacy of EULAs as discussed within this thread.

michaelzap
May 24th, 2008, 09:26 PM
An interesting development (http://arstechnica.com/news.ars/post/20080523-court-smacks-autodesk-affirms-right-to-sell-used-software.html) which, while not addressing piracy, does have significant ramifications with regard to the legitimacy of EULAs as discussed within this thread.

Apple has been lambasted in the press a bit lately for some of the terms of their EULAs also: http://blogs.zdnet.com/hardware/?p=1601

Which is just more evidence that EULAs should not be taken as the final word on the users' and companies' rights and responsibilities, but rather the seller's assertion of their rights (whether or not those assertions are reasonable, ethical, or legal).

LaRoza
May 24th, 2008, 09:36 PM
Which is just more evidence that EULAs should not be taken as the final word on the users' and companies' rights and responsibilities, but rather the seller's assertion of their rights (whether or not those assertions are reasonable, ethical, or legal).

And this forum isn't the place to make this decision. This forum is for Ubuntu technical support.

Silpheed2K
May 25th, 2008, 11:48 PM
Copyright on a large scale affects cultural diversity (http://www.wired.com/culture/lifestyle/news/2001/11/48625), education (http://www.futureofthebook.org/blog/archives/2006/02/drm_and_the_damage_done_to_lib.html), scientific research (http://www.cs.cmu.edu/~dst/DMCA/Gallery/index.html) and free speech (http://archive.salon.com/tech/log/2001/08/31/dmca_animals/index.html). Ultimately it will turn your country into a police state (http://news.zdnet.co.uk/itmanagement/0,1000000308,39238422,00.htm). Once this happens, business and economy will be your least concerns.

Wow you actually made a great point and I like that.
On topic though.. even though I am a programmer... and I do put lots of hard work and research into my apps (some of which I may want to be paid for to aid in my life and reaching my goals).
Even though I do that, am I concerned about piracy of my work? yes
Do I look at it in a deeper level of thinking than most? yes (even deeper than other programmers)

I ultimately view it as a form of retaliation and something being wrong with the system in place and I feel there could be something better in its place as there are many problems plaguing society that the rich enforce in an attempt to stay on top.
What I feel could be better is unmatched quality and affordable pricing... along with the destruction of greed.

But ultimately I am in favor of software being free and operating systems being free.. I also hope Linux becomes a primary OS in the future but the ease of its use needs to be ironed out so people can use it.

I honestly forgot where I was going but this thread was interesting to read.