Software Piracy

Web Quest: Software Licensing and Piracy

1. Were you aware that for most software, the EULA appears when the program is first loaded and you must agree to it before proceeding with the installation?

1A Yes, I have seen this many times, and it is usually a good bit of reading. I have installed many programs, and I have generally began to trust those agreements without actually reading them.

2. Have you ever installed software without reading the EULA?

2A Yes I have installed software without reading the EULA.

3. What are some of the key conditions or restrictions of the EULA you’ve located?

3A I may install and use the software on any number of computers. I may not sell any part of this software as part of any other software. I may not distribute or host on a web server any part of the software without the permission of the owner. I may not reverse engineer, decompile, or disassemble this software. I can use ManicTime for commercial and personal use.

4. What are several of the key organizations involved with tracking and prosecuting software piracy?

4A I found a group called “Business Software Alliance” (BSA) that offers cash rewards to whistle blowers that report businesses that pirate software. I also found SIIA, another anti-piracy agency that is dedicated to reducing piracy issues.

5. What are the ramifications of software piracy? Do you think these problems have any impact on you personally? Why or why not?

5A When it comes to software piracy and its impact on me personally, I am sure that it does affect me. In short, for all the software that gets developed, and not properly compensated for, means that teams of people that develop that software do not have the resources (money) to continue further development. Some teams may stop all together, and others will have to lay off a couple talented programmers or find other ways to cut corners.  In the end, we all loose out on potential software.

6. How are software publishers attempting to prevent software piracy? Do you think these methods are effective?

6A Some software publishers are reporting piracy to BSA or SIIA and then being prosecuted for piracy. Some use special packaging that makes it hard to duplicate and sell as “legitimate” software when in reality it is a copy. Also, some companies have audit software that you can use to make sure all the licenses are being used properly.

7. Are the penalties for software piracy different for corporations than they are for individuals? Do you think this is fair?

7A Penalties are not the same for infringement by an individual or for a company. But I would think that per infraction makes it more fair. I am comfortable with it the way it is.

8. What steps can you take to ensure you will not become a victim of software piracy?

8A I can make it so that any programs I write or am a part of are registered with BSA, SIIA and have a license that you have to read before it is installed.

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10 Responses to “Software Piracy”

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