Code Confidential: The V.i. Labs Blog
Windows 8 Sales in China, a Dutch Court’s Anti-Piracy Ruling and the New DMCA Exemptions – Week in Review 10/29/2012
Welcome back to V.i. Labs’ weekly update on application usage management and software licensing. This week we cover Microsoft’s choice to drop box sales in China, a Dutch court’s copyright ruling that could have far reaching consequences for the EU and the newly revised DMCA exemptions. Read on and don’t forget to follow us on Twitter, Google+ and our RSS feed to get the latest news.
We wanted to point out that Vic DeMarines, our VP of Products, and Michael Goff, our Director of Marketing, were interviewed by PC World for an article on Windows 8 piracy in China. We offer a brief summary below but highly encourage you to read the whole article for yourself!
Microsoft Drops Retail Box Sales of Windows 8 in China
Microsoft has announced that it will not offer box sales of Windows 8 in China. Instead the company will only offer Windows 8 as a pre-install on new computers and through its website as a download. The move is the latest attempt by Microsoft to curb software piracy in China.
While the Chinese government has made progress against software piracy, Microsoft still faces huge obstacles in the world’s largest market. Pirated versions of Microsoft products are widely available at stores throughout the country and Chinese consumers are quick to adopt them despite the risk of malware.
Vic DeMarines, our VP of Products, commented in PC World saying that he believes pirated versions of Windows 8 to be available as soon as 30 days after the official release.
Hosting Provider for SumoTorrent Liable for Damages
BREIN, a Netherlands based anti-piracy group, has won a landmark case in its fight against software piracy. In last week’s ruling a Dutch court found XS Networks, the hosting provider for BitTorrent site SumoTorrent, guilty of facilitating copyright infringement by refusing to shut down a site it knew to be illegal.
The ruling is significant because it marks the first time hosting providers would be liable for damages if it do not take down illegal websites in a timely manner. Peripherally, because the case dealt with a Dutch law based on an EU directive, the ruling may set a precedent to how the rest of the European Union deals with hosting providers that have copyright infringing customers.
Before the case went to court, SumoTorrent switched providers and continues to operate with a hosting service out of the Ukraine. The hosting provider, XS Networks, has since gone out of business.
Jailbreaking Still Legal for Smartphones; Still Illegal for Tablets
The US Librarian of Congress issued new exemption rules to the Digital Millennium Copyright Act, renewing the jailbreaking exemption for smartphones but continuing to deny them for tablets.
The Register of Copyrights recommended against a tablet jailbreaking exception arguing that the definition of a “tablet” device was too vague. The Register, noting the non-infringing purposes for jailbreaking, said it would reconsider the exemption in the future when “tablet” is better defined.
Jailbreaking refers to the process of removing manufacturer imposed device limitations giving users root access to the operating system. While there are many legitimate reasons to jailbreak products, the process of jailbreaking also allows users to install pirated software.
Comments? Questions? Got a question for Vic, our software piracy expert? Leave a message in the comments box below.