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software pirates in the workplace

By justmakingit ·
I had until recently held an IT postion within a small organization that contained only pirated software. Since I was the sole IT person within the organization, I confronted the director and told them that all of the software was illegal and that there would be dire consequences it was brought to the attention of Microsoft, Adobe etc. The director didn't want to hear anything about it and was told to forget about it because no one would find out. My question is this... do I, as an IT professional, have the responsibility to confront large manufacturers showing the illegal software? And does it come down on me if they are caught?

Thanks,

Dennis

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have to agree with you

by justmakingit In reply to Don't let them BS you abo ...

If the software, music, movie etx industries didn't charge so much for their product, there wouldn't be as much piracy going on. Where I live, for 2 people to see a movie it costs $30. That is terrible, maybe that is cheap compared to other regions, but point being, it is terrible. And as software is concerned, it is almost $300 to buy XP pro and it has been out for what 2-3 years now.

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Jim They want all they can get

by HAL 9000 Moderator In reply to Don't let them BS you abo ...

And then some after all isn't that the way of the world?

MS has it down pat I recently wanted to setup a very small business with a "Volume License" for an all MS Office and I was greeted with having to buy the OEM product then paying for a Volume License as well as Software Assurance.

Now Leaving out the SA MS still wanted to be paid twice for the same product just so I could "Bulk Load" the software which was anything but in my customers best interests.

Col

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You accepted

by ozi Eagle In reply to Don't let them BS you abo ...

I am getting annoyed about all the bleeding hearts whinging about how much money MS and others make. Let's be honest, they aren't forcing you to buy / use their product, however, if you do you legally agree to their terms and conditions as soon as you open the package. (read their licencing terms).
The beef that $2-300 for a rather complex software package is an exhorbitant rip off obviously comes from someone who hasn't been around very long, as software used to cost in six or more figures, some 25 years ago, and there are still specialist packages out there that cost tens of thousands of dollars.

Trying to justify piracy by the logic of "I've bought it once" doesn't hold up much either, if you consider that a word processor on, say, 4 computers allows the useres to prepare their own reports etc, in a professional manner, compared to the good (bad?) old days where you had a typist type from hand written notes, the typos had to be checked and re-typed to remove errors. The saving in time and not needing to employ a typist, annually saves far more than the cost of three extra copies of the software.

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Balderdash

by Brian Hynes In reply to Don't let them BS you abo ...

So if I understand your thinking what you are suggestion is because the cost is high, you have the right to Pirate..... This is ludicrous thinking, software is a commodity and as such market will determine ultimate pricing. In the intern I suggest that you rethink your morality of stealing.

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Leaving makes you even more of a target

by DNSB In reply to thanks for the imput

For what it's worth, if you have any copies of letters, emails, whatever that you sent to your previous boss, hang on to them. They might be all that saves you when the sh*t hits the fan. One of my co-workers was in your situation a couple of years back. After she moved to another job, she found herself being "credited" for obtaining the pirated software. All that saved her butt was the copies she saved of her correspondence with her supervisor and others about the use of pirated software. So make sure your *** is covered.

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not really true

by justmakingit In reply to Leaving makes you even mo ...

The reson I left was becuase I was doing an internship with the organization, it was limited to 4 months and that was it. So, the reason I left was due to the fact that I had to leave, not necessarily because I wanted to (although I did want to because of the situation)

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Caught between a rock and a hard place!

by tmoneil In reply to software pirates in the w ...

I exprienced the same situation and it is a no-win situtation. The pirated software is indeed illegal. And with upper management turning a blind eye to the behavior, it puts you in a horrible situtation. I doubt the whistleblower laws would protect your job if you protest too much and get fired. I have worked for some real arrogant managers who will likely claim they did not know and should have been told (by you)- the typical defense these days. Good luck!

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The Bigger Issue

by mollenhourb In reply to software pirates in the w ...

The bigger issue is do you want to work for such a company. If they are willing to break the law on an issue such as software piracy, where else are they breaking the law.

I worked for such a company once as an accountant (I know, that's a dirty word to IT professoinals), and felt a huge sense of relief when I left. A couple of months later their "questionable practices" in other areas came out in the paper.

The long and short of it is, GET OUT NOW! You don't want to be there when it all hits the fan, and it WILL hit the fan.

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My task also includes educating Computers (in the broad sense)

by ABlitz In reply to The Bigger Issue

Sorry to disagree. As a Pc support guy, I met many small organizations where the present managment was not the original who (did not) purchase the software.
So I always pointed out to the present managment what the dangers are and what actions to take in order to fix it.

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I didn't report our software...she did....

by swinnicki In reply to software pirates in the w ...

I never cared much about the ethics of such a situation...I knew about our company having unlicened software being used at work and wasn't in a position of responsibility where I thought it would affect me....till one day another female coworked asked me why her software had no registration number...I told her that it was unlicenced and everybody was using and it was no big deal...The same day, heck the next minute really, she ran to the managers of IT telling them about this.....She gets promoted and 6 hardworking guys including myself were fired for having the knowledge of this and not reporting it. Turns out the software WAS on the 2 of the IT managers PC's also....but did they get fired?
You bet not...they claimed they didn't know it was unlicenced...so much for Honesty in the work place! Bottom Line is either be the whistle blower or just claim you don't know a thing, but the thing you should never do is admit to your co-workers you have knowledge of such a situation and then do nothing about it.

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