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Windows Refund Day update

OctobrX posted more than 15 years ago | from the wish-you-were-here- dept.

Microsoft 207

We've been locked out of the offices that Microsoft promised would be open today. Rick Moen: says... Its been a huge success... the message has been heard everywhere... there were TONS of reporters... from Chris DiBona: it was disappointed but unsuprised that the elevators to the 9th floor where Microsoft resides... were disabled. He was seen later telling reporters that if this one piece of the license was bogus, then the whole thing was worthless and that this means that people should feel free to copy and distribute Microsoft products to the world. He also noted that he would not wish this fate on any of his friends.

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Rock on. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 15 years ago | (#2014791)

Wish I was there!

Great (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 15 years ago | (#2014792)

Now we are going to see Linux users advocating software piracy all over the 6 o'clock news. This is supposed to make Microsoft look bad, not us.


Anonymous Coward | more than 15 years ago | (#2014793)

This must be the by far coolest (to use that by M$ worn out term) the Open Source community has ever done! (well Linux's pretty nice too I guess:).

But this! What a show. I loove it!

/Patrik Sweden

Copying Windows? What morons.. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 15 years ago | (#2014794)


Look, folks.. if software doesn't have a license, it reverts back under copyright law. This means NO ONE BUT THE ORIGINAL AUTHOR IS ENTITLED TO USE IT.

If EULA is illegal or voided, then NO ONE BUT MICROSOFT can use it until a new license is put into place.

Besides, don't most licenses contain lines stating that the license may be changed without warning?


President's Day? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 15 years ago | (#2014795)

Maybe they shouldn't have picked a holiday for this thing...

Great (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 15 years ago | (#2014796)

oh, its not like people weren't pirating Win95 up until now. Myself, I wanted to use the new FAT32 features of OSR2, but since I wasn't allowed to buy it (it was only bundled with preinstalled PCs), they didn't leave me with any choice. I guess MS would consider that piracy though.

Great (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 15 years ago | (#2014797)

They should have passed out some pirated Back Street Boys and Spice Girls mp3s for the final touch.

On Headline News (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 15 years ago | (#2014798)

It made it onto CNN's Headline News.. Congrats I guess.

Copying Windows? What morons.. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 15 years ago | (#2014799)

Strangely enough under British law, a contract is void unless the terms and conditions are presented before any money changes hands. Since most software contains the license (aka terms and conditions of use) inside the box virtually all software licenses in the uk are void and once you've bought it it's yours to do what you want with.

It's one of those things that has never and will never be tried in court. The software companies don't want to draw attention to it and it's not worth the expense for the average software user to take the likes of MS to court.

By the way, this doesn't apply to you guys in charge of buying software for a company - if you're making repeat purchases it's assumed you know the terms and conditions already, since you probably opened a box or two along the way. It just applies to the little guys

wankers (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 15 years ago | (#2014800)

See, OctX CAN post news that isnt blatently pushing themes.org [themes.org] .

Down with the wankers who criticize his character for using slashdot as the biggest banner of all in promoting themes.org [themes.org] .

Hey, while you're at it.. why not go visit themes.org [themes.org] ?


Piracy bad, lawsuit good (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 15 years ago | (#2014801)

Obviously, suggesting that people give away copies of their Microsoft products is a BAD idea.

Much better ones include jumping on the Lets Sue Microsoft bandwagon (We should have a National Sue Microsoft day) or asking the FTC to investigate Microsoft in conjunction with their OEMs for consumer fraud. A class action suit naming Microsoft and their various OEMs who have refused to honor the EULA should be a slam-dunk as long as Microsoft doesn't use the Chewbacca Defense.

No Subject Given (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 15 years ago | (#2014802)

Elevators are controlled by Windows NT. It crashed, elevators don't work. Too bad.

Copying Windows? Not quite. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 15 years ago | (#2014803)

If the license is bogus, you have exactly the same rights as you would with any other copyrighted work. As the owner of the copy of the work you have a lot of rights that the license tries to circumvent (but you may not make copies, altho fair use is still valid).

However, what is more interesting is that if the license is bogus, you arent signing away any right to sue the pants off them for lost or destroyed work through the malfunction of their worthless products, and you are entitled to ordinary consumer rights, such as an expected usefulness of the product, etc.

You cannot change a license without warning. The original license remains in place. Despite some license writers wetdreams, there is such a thing as contract law.

Why didn't they ... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 15 years ago | (#2014804)

just take the stairs.

MS has never cared about customers before.. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 15 years ago | (#2014805)

so why should they start now?

The Chewbacca defense! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 15 years ago | (#2014806)

It's from a South Park episode starring Johnny Cochrane..really a classic piece of courtroom humor.

The Chewbacca defense? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 15 years ago | (#2014807)

WATCH South Park more often. One episode deals with Chef suing, then being countersued for someone stealing his old song.
The Chewbacca defense is a cunning tactic used
to confuse the jury...
Hey!... MAYBE that's what they're [MS] is doing in Washington D.C. w/ the DOJ....
...Things that make you go hmmmmmm......

The Chewbacca defense? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 15 years ago | (#2014808)

a south park reference where a record company hires johnny cochran to sue chef for plagarizing a song. johnny used the chewbacca defense (which had nothing to do with his case) to distract attention away from the matter at hand. watch south park to see.

Actually quite approriate.... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 15 years ago | (#2014809)

...given the nature (and first name) of our current President.

Where do you want to go today?.. the 9th floor (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 15 years ago | (#2014810)

Looks like M$ has raised the drawbridge, so to speak. Better storm the stairs to get your money back..

_President_'s Day??? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 15 years ago | (#2014811)

In Febuary, there are several dead presidents (of the U.S.) have birthdays, significantly President Washingtion (as in General, and the first U.S. president) and Abraham Lincoln (16th President, freed the slaves and was Pres. during the Civil War). So rather than have a Washington Day and a Lincoln Day they get amalgamated into Presidents' Day. A celebration of the office, not of the occupant. :)

(insert appropriate cigar joke here)

let's see (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 15 years ago | (#2014812)

Let's see.. I must pay for some software I won't use from some company in some other country when I want to buy a PC from any major vendor? get real! No way in hell I'll even spend a penny on MS software even if that means going to the mac 1st. Thank god vendors here pirate the stuff they put on their systems so you don't have to pay for lame software you won't ever use.

-Unix/Linux user since 1976

Everyone who has a problem being locked out go.... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 15 years ago | (#2014813)

If you've had a problem being locked out go to this site [ftc.gov] (Federal Trade Commission, Bureau of Consumer Protection, Complaint Form). Good luck

what Reagan would say if he was there (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 15 years ago | (#2014814)

Mr. Gates, tear down that wall!

it's the cold war all over again and MS is the evil empire

Wonder what it's like working at Redmond now... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 15 years ago | (#2014815)

I'm sure glad I didn't take their job offer, I bet it sucks working for a company that it is taking it like a prison bitch from all sides.

They are losing their anti-trust case, no I take that back. They are getting their collective butts kicked by the government in grand fashion. (Rich Grey of GMSV and SJMercury said that the last time the US Government inflicted this much pain on somebody there were blown up Iraqi tanks scattered about...)

They are losing hype to linux, the new darling of the media and IT world. These are rare times that a high quality product has the media support, I'm loving it. I'm so used to crap being pushed by ZD et al.

A bunch of geeks want their money back because they are using linux. Doesn't matter what their purpose or cause it, an army of geeks is scarry. I'd lock the doors and bust out the .06 and build a bunker if they were coming after me!

Sun is winning the java suit, MS is pulling their java plug and betting on some new 'COOL' technology. Funniest thing is there is an internal war over COOL. (Start from scratch or "fix up C++" (the fools just don't get it, do thay?)) Java's not a winner but MS is doing their damndest to make it look like one.

Win2000 isn't going to be ready. Most slashdoters probably won't agree with me but x (as in ten) is looking very killer, I could really get used to a linux and macosx world. I'd love to see linux and apple replacing NT.

They don't have a 64bit OS and Intel seems to be dropping the ball with the Piii enough that merced might start to look interesting. Probably not, but I'm not sure what the hell intel is thinking releasing the piii, it's like they are pulling an MS or something. AMD must be scaring the heck out of them. Back to MS: It hasn't started yet but the 64bit talk will begin before too long and this puts MS in an interesting position because over the last 8 years they've been able to say "NT is the future, we've got it waiting for when you're ready" but MS will be behind the times in popular opinion in the 64bit world. All the lemmings know is that 64bits is twice as many as 32bits.

Heck, NBC isn't even the top rated network anymore.. It looks like they are getting ready to kill some of those Thursday shows that used to be so popular.

Just wait to they start to feel it in the stock, that's when the pressure will really get turned up... Their developers are going to be jumping ship like it was the titanic.

Next time don't tell the buttheads you're coming (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 15 years ago | (#2014816)

In the Foster city one, the elevators worked, they would just not stop on the 9th floor. When people went to the 10th and 8th floors, they found the stairs locked. Later the elevators were locked down completely.

After 20:00 pst, check out the sheet [bafug.org] handed out.

Rock on. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 15 years ago | (#2014817)

Are you surprised that MiKKrosoft lied? These people lie under oath for gods sake!

Copying Windows? What morons.. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 15 years ago | (#2014818)

It gets better: when I booted my Dell laptop, the first thing that came up was a screen that said, in part, ``Type 'Y' to indicate that you have read all of the software licenses and agree to their terms.''

However, according to http://www.microsoft.com/piracy/licensing/matrix.h tm
Windows 98 OEM (which came preloaded on the aforementioned laptop) does not come with a paper copy of the EULA.

Try again! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 15 years ago | (#2014819)

Nope, rethink that.

I payed MS money for the software. Either they were ripping me off by selling me something worthless (illegial in most states), or they were selling me ownership of windows (I wish!), or they were giving me the right to use it.

Class Action Lawsuit! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 15 years ago | (#2014820)

This has Class Action Lawsuit written all over it.
Is there a lawyer out there willing to file one on
behalf of those wanting a refund?

Re: What? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 15 years ago | (#2014821)

> In this way, Microsoft is stamping out
> competition in the OS market. For this they
> should be punished.

Ideally, perhaps, but by law it's only when they
leverage the monopoly in one area into another.
I.E., IE leveraged on top of their OS.

Big deal (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 15 years ago | (#2014822)

Big deal. So MS locked their doors for a day to keep the rebel kids from doing something stupid. Like anything is going to happen from this little party. Msoft is still laughing. You need to do something that has some impact. Not a one day linux party/seige...

give me a break kiddies

more later- I need to reboot my win machine again

Microsoft's letter to the Refund Day folks (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 15 years ago | (#2014823)


Dear Valued Customer,

Microsoft welcomes you to its local sales office today. We are always available to answer any questions you might have about Microsoft products and technologies.


Fundamentally, you, the consumer, have a choice of operating systems and PCs. You can purchase a PC with a non-Microsoft operating system or a PC with no operating system preinstalled at all. In fact, more than 200,000 PC makers worldwide will allow you to choose which exact components you want on your PC, from processor to video card to operating system software. According to the LINUX.ORG Web site, more than 60 OEMs in 14 countries offer PCs with LINUX preinstalled. The choice is yours, and we hope that you, like millions of other customers around the world have done, choose Microsoft operating system products to run your PC and enhance your computing experience"


So, I bite. Anyone care to guess where this "200,000 PC makers" figure came from?

--- eli@prometheus-music.com

What? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 15 years ago | (#2014824)

I'd like to buy a laptop with no OS installed please. Can you point me in the right direction?

Before replying, please note that I don't want
something where the VAR I'm buying it from has
paid the MS tax and removed the OS, but I want
something virgin that has never had an OS before,
and nobody has paid the tax on it.

If you can find said laptop manufacturer, there are plenty of people who would like to have a word with you, since nobody at the Refund Day could think of one. Even VAResearch basically gets laptops (I think NEC was mentioned) and uninstalls the OS that's on them. The hardware mfr's just won't ship laptops with anything else, period.

Locked the floor? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 15 years ago | (#2014825)

There's no fire-marshal requirement that you be able to get ON to a particular floor, only that in an emergency, you have the ability to get OFF that floor.

I was a witness to the whole thing... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 15 years ago | (#2014826)

Driving up very early, the first thing I saw was a sign for "Linux Press Coverage". When I approached the garage to park, the rent a cop asked me if I was there for the Microsoft event, I told him ,no I pointed to the sign and told him I was there for the Linux event. He replied "You mean the Microsoft event". Microsoft tried thier best to stage the event.

After making a march on the parking lot, Microsoft representatives greeted the protestors warmly. Rumor had it they were looking for recruits.

It seems the elevators malfunctioned just when the unwitting Microsft customers wanted to visit the Microsoft office, worse yet the stairs were locked too.

But the protestors were there to prove a point and did, well sort of... We'll see if the EULA is changed, or if unit pricing is abondoned.


errrr..... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 15 years ago | (#2014827)

I don't get it..!!?? Shouldn't we be going after OEM instead of MS..??

Class Action Lawsuit! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 15 years ago | (#2014828)

Microsoft cannot enter a third party into an agreement without their expressed approval.

OEM's are not told, given agreements to sign, or otherwise notified that they are being assigned a contractual obligation by the EULA. In fact, OEM's cannot even SEE the EULA, because it is hidden inside shrink-wrap.

So, the OEM doesn't HAVE a contractual obligation, despite what Microsoft may like to think or write on paper. I know. I used to BE an OEM/VAR. I installed many an installation of DOS/Windows/Etc. with not a single notification that MS wanted me to be responsible for bearing the brunt of the cost. Ya know what? I don't bear the brunt of it. I never, as an OEM, agreed to the EULA, and heck I never even SAW it.

What it really proved today is that the EULA is a completely worthless piece of paper (because the OEM's have not committed to abide by the agreement), which is fine, because now it puts Windows products strictly under copyright law, which allows for "usability of product" cases, etc., which is good for the consumer, since they'll be able to sue for damages when products malfunction, etc.

Here is $.02, buy a clue. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 15 years ago | (#2014829)

Yes, the 'contract' says that you must contact the vendor. Been there, done that, and most vendors say that THEY HAVE A CONTRACT WITH MS THAT FORBIDS REFUNDS. The contract is between MS and You, not You and the vendor. When you can't go through the vendor, then you have only once choice. MS is violating their end of the 'contract' plain and simple.

Class Action Lawsuit! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 15 years ago | (#2014830)

It seems to me that there is a lawsuit in there somewhere. If Microsoft and the vendor are unwilling to give a refund, then there is a breach of contract somewhere.

It is probably illegal for Microsoft to require the vendors to supply refunds unless the vendors signed an agreement saying they would. Since this caught most everyone by surprise, the vendors probably never signed such an agreement.

If the vendors signed such an agreement, then you can sue them. If not, you can sue Microsoft.

If Microsoft and the vendor refuse to honor their own EULA, you could probably make a good case that their EULA's are not valid contracts and you can ignore them.

MAN you're an incoherent fool. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 15 years ago | (#2014831)

I'm sure glad I didn't take their job offer, I bet it sucks working for a company that it is taking it like a prison bitch from all sides.

I'm sure they're glad you are too... an illiterate fool such as yourself would be of no use. Can't even spell the word "scary".

They are losing their anti-trust case, no I take that back. They are getting their collective butts kicked by the government in grand fashion. (Rich Grey of GMSV and SJMercury said that the last time the US Government inflicted this much pain on somebody there were blown up Iraqi tanks scattered about...)

I'll agree they're getting ripped on the case. But I'd hardly quote anything from sjmercury as a reliable resource. Owned, and puppeted by KPCB.

They are losing hype to linux, the new darling of the media and IT world. These are rare times that a high quality product has the media support, I'm loving it. I'm so used to crap being pushed by ZD et al.
Blah blah blah... Hype shmype. I'm waiting for the first trokan horse to rip some CTO a new one. Tee hee!!!

A bunch of geeks want their money back because they are using linux. Doesn't matter what their purpose or cause it, an army of geeks is scarry. I'd lock the doors and bust out the .06 and build a bunker if they were coming after me!

They can simply hide behind the aspect of the EULA that all the lunix morons seem to fail to grasp, that the EULA is an agreement between the distributor of the PC and the end user.

Win2000 isn't going to be ready. Most slashdoters probably won't agree with me but x (as in ten) is looking very killer, I could really get used to a linux and macosx world. I'd love to see linux and apple replacing NT.

HAHAHAHAHAHA... Go over to ars-technica and read the rip... I mean REVIEW of OSUX. SMP scales well, but not above 1 proc. Remote boot one machine, and 30% of the server's time is usurped until the MacPOS on the end has finished booting. No domain model, no shared security (need to have all users replicated across all machines.)


They don't have a 64bit OS and Intel seems to be dropping the ball with the Piii enough that merced might start to look interesting. Probably not, but I'm not sure what the hell intel is thinking releasing the piii, it's like they are pulling an MS or something. AMD must be scaring the heck out of them. Back to MS: It hasn't started yet but the 64bit talk will begin before too long and this puts MS in an interesting position because over the last 8 years they've been able to say "NT is the future, we've got it waiting for when you're ready" but MS will be behind the times in popular opinion in the 64bit world. All the lemmings know is that 64bits is twice as many as 32bits.

Microsoft has repeatedly announced a 64 bit version of NT. Where the hell have YOU been?

I get the feeling that you're another teeny-bopper Lunix luser who doesn't know what the fsck he's talking about. Get a clue.

Locked the floor? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 15 years ago | (#2014832)

If there's a fire, I think most folks would be interested in getting to the GROUND floor. And while I'm not absolutely completely positively 100% certain about this, I'd be willing to bet money that the fire marshal would agree with me about this. I'm sure you could continue on down the stairwell to any other floor; it's quite rare that you would actually have to _enter_ the 9th floor in order to escape.

-posting anonymously because I forgot who I am

To get in *and* get out without trouble. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 15 years ago | (#2014833)

OK, say that some people on floor 9 passed out in a fire by inhaling smoke. Now, what is helping the firefighters most: an unlocked door or one which they have to kick in first?

(Oh, I forgot. Let those bastards have it!!! ;)

Can you say Class-Action Lawsuit? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 15 years ago | (#2014834)

I _knew_ you could.

There they are... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 15 years ago | (#2014835)

VAResearch,VAResearch,VAResearch,VAResearch,VARese arch,VAResearch,VAResearch,...

Bullshit. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 15 years ago | (#2014836)

Give me ONE example of a homebuilt PC costing more than a clone (Dell, CPQ, CrapWay) equivalent.

If you can, I can point you to a retailer who is REAMING you on parts.

How can there be a contract with no signature? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 15 years ago | (#2014837)

Even a verbal contracts require a real human being representing the other party to be present when presenting you with any sort of contract. Shrink wrap licenses, just like "click to agree to license" buttons in install apps, are legally meaningless. If you get busted for piracy, it's because legislators passed anti-piracy laws which you broke- it has nothing to do with the EULA. The EULA is a total waste of paper and ink.

President's Day? (1)

Mike Hicks (244) | more than 15 years ago | (#2014894)

Heh.. well, IIRC, there's a little bit of a joke here -- People were supposed to get back a few Presidents (a.k.a. Dollars) on Presidents' day.. Made sense to me ;-)

But yeah, it's kind of bad to have it on a holiday..

Locked the floor? (1)

Mike Hicks (244) | more than 15 years ago | (#2014895)

You mean they locked off the single floor?!?! I have serious questions about that..

John Hanson, first President of Congress (1)

KMSelf (361) | more than 15 years ago | (#2014897)

Interesting, never knew of this. Obligatory links: 1 [aoc.gov] , 2 [hypermart.net] .

Note that Hanson was President of the United States in Congress Assembled", not "President of the United States", the current office.

Marc Merlin/Greg Sutter's SVLUG report (1)

KMSelf (361) | more than 15 years ago | (#2014898)

[svlug] Other report posted on freebsd list
15 Feb 1999 23:59:26 GMT
marc_news@merlins.org (Marc MERLIN)
Private Linux Box proudly running a modified RedHat Linux 5.2

------------------------------------------------ ----------------------------

From: Gregory Sutter
To: freebsd-advocacy@FreeBSD.ORG, freebsd-chat@FreeBSD.ORG, announce@bafug.org
Subject: Windows Refund Day: Bay Area Report
Date: Mon, 15 Feb 1999 15:14:38 -0800

FreeBSD folk,

This report is being written from the CoffeeNet, where we've all met
after the event in Foster City. We didn't exactly "storm the Gates",
but both the Linux and FreeBSD communities turned out in force,
accompanied by a couple of others (I saw a Sun and an SCO person).
We got to the parking garage where the Microsoft "welcome table" was
set up. There were Microsoft-sponsored refreshments and a lot of
press, including many major stations.

A few of us grabbed some press members with cameras and headed for
the main entrance. We arrived and were greeted by a friendly
Microsoft security guard, who told us that we were not allowed to go
up to the ninth floor (where the Microsoft offices are). When the
press members began questioning her, she called another person, who
apparently called security, because they showed up long before any
Microsoft representative would talk to us.

I was interviewed by several press members at this time, right from
the lobby of the Microsoft office. Several others had arrived by this
time and we were becoming more forceful in our attempts to get to the
Microsoft Office. People began getting on the elevators, only to find
that they had been locked down so that nobody could visit the ninth
floor. those going to the tenth and using the stairs found that the
stair doors were locked from the inside as well, so nobody actually got
into the office. (Later, they locked the elevators down completely.)

After twenty minutes or so of increased numbers of refund attempters, a
person claiming to be a Microsoft representative appeared. While
several of us attempted to get some straight answers out of him, he
would only give us the typical Microsoft doubletalk. He handed out a
sheet explaining Microsoft's statement on the refund policy[1] and would
only echo what was contained on that paper. Although several tried, we
were unable to get him to admit even that this was Microsoft policy and
not just a random statement.

Around this time, the rest of the group arrived and the press began
seriously interviewing everyone. I saw Eric Raymond and many others
being questioned repeatedly on the purpose of the gathering and whether
Microsoft had issued a statement. There was a _lot_ of mass media
presence at the event, and Microsoft's attempts to stonewall us at the
door didn't impress anyone. I look forward to the news reports tonight
and tomorrow.

Toward the end, we all just stood in the courtyard and kibitzed before
finally breaking up around 1:45 to return to our regularly scheduled
activities (and a fine gathering at the CoffeeNet). Gregory Sutter,
reporting for OSS News[2], signing off.

[1] For the full document, see
after 20:00 PST today.

[2] and Daemon News.

Gregory S. Sutter My reality check just bounced.
PGP DSS public key 0x40AE3052
------------------------------------------------ ----------------------------

"Microsoft is to software what McDonalds is to gourmet cooking"

Home page: http://marc.merlins.org/ (friendly to non IE browsers)
Finger marc_f@merlins.org for PGP key and other contact information

echo "unsubscribe svlug" | mail majordomo@svlug.org
^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^ ^^^ to unsubscribe
see http://www.svlug.org/mdstuff/lists.shtml for posting guidelines.

We're one *extremely* civil bunch... (1)

caferace (442) | more than 15 years ago | (#2014900)

That had to be the quietest gathering of this ilk I've ever been to. Maybe it had something to do with the sterileness of the surroundings.

Glass, steel, fake-looking (but real) landscaping.


I want to die peacefully in my sleep as my grandfather did...

_President_'s Day??? (1)

John Campbell (559) | more than 15 years ago | (#2014901)

Actually, it's "Presidents' Day"... note, plural Presidents. The specific Presidents referenced are George Washington and Abraham Lincoln, who both had birthdays in February. Both centuries dead, and thus obviously longer ruling, and both generally considered among the "great" American Presidents.

I think our _current_ President's day was a few days ago, when the lynch mob failed to get the votes they needed for conviction...

Stupid Microsoft, do you want the DOJ to rip you? (1)

gavinhall (33) | more than 15 years ago | (#2014904)

Posted by BobDole:

Microsoft is between a rock and a hard place.
They can't force someone to accept the EULA. And they can't make someone pay for the software if they don't accept the EULA. If they do not give the refunds, they are commiting breech of contract and liable to not only civil lawsuit for the cost of the product, legal costs, and punitive damages, but also it provides more food for the DOJ because then they would be forcing people to choose Windoze.

Next time don't tell the buttheads you're coming (1)

gavinhall (33) | more than 15 years ago | (#2014905)

Posted by Mr. Assembly:

You know this just shows why software "licences" or EULAs (end user license agreements) are such a big scam. Its an excuse for big companies to sue somebody for putting an extra copy on a server somewhere, but yet they don't intend to keep their end of the so called "agreement". If I were these people knocking on the door today, I would see if Microshaft knows how to say the words "class action". Maybe they would have a harder time locking the doors to a proccess server.
You know, do these guys even know that they have a really bad PR problem on their hands? Do they even care????

If you can not use it as a license use it anyway (1)

gavinhall (33) | more than 15 years ago | (#2014906)

Posted by Mr. Assembly:

It could be like that beer commercial during the superbowl. If you ran out of toilet paper you could always grab the EULA..........

was fun :) (1)

PHroD (1018) | more than 15 years ago | (#2014912)

had lotsa fun walkin n talkin and waving to the passing cars, and up in SF, lotsa good free food...i had nothing to returnto M$, but had lotsa fun joking etc.


HotsOS home http://hotsos.8m.com/

I agree, but look at it this way... (1)

Danse (1026) | more than 15 years ago | (#2014913)

Linux users advocating software piracy is not something I'd like to see on the news. In this case, however, I think people will see it for what it is: a sign of frustration that Microsoft refuses to honor (or tell OEMs to honor) what is practically the single responsibility taken on by Microsoft and it's distributors in the EULA. If they can't even honor this one point in the EULA, why should they expect anyone else to honor their responsibilities under the EULA?

IMO Microsoft is every bit as bad as the biggest software pirates out there. Neither one of them will live up to their responsibilities. It just looks worse when Microsoft does it because it's hypocritical as well as immoral, irresponsible, and illegal. By refusing to honor their agreement to give refunds to those people who do not want the software and refuse to agree to the EULA, Microsoft is stealing from those people. They can't sit on their high horse and tell the world how software piracy is theft while they are doing the same thing to us. They wrote the damn EULA, they should live up to it.

The Chewbacca defense? (1)

caldodge (1152) | more than 15 years ago | (#2014914)

>Ok, not to be tha nit picker here, but it was
> Han that said "Let the Wookie win" to C3PO

Oops ... you're wrong.

I guess I get to be the nitpicker.

C3PO complains to Han about Chewbacca's anger at losing.
Han says (in essence) that Wookies have been known to pull people's arms out of their sockets when that happens.
C3PO says to R2: "I suggest a different strategy - let the Wookie win".

The Chewbacca defense? (1)

jd (1658) | more than 15 years ago | (#2014915)


C3PO: "Let the Wookie win."

(As in - Microsoft looses, it'll do the electronic equiv. of rip people's arms off)

Well, they *do* say ``place of purchase'' (1)

Max Hyre (1974) | more than 15 years ago | (#2014916)

At least in the copy of the NT 4.0 EULA I have handy, the words are:

If the SOFTWARE PRODUCT was purchased by you as part of a Microsoft packaged product, you may return it to your place of purchase for a full refund.

(Emphasis added.)

So, don't go to MS, go to wherever you bought the system from.
MS never wants to deal with you, only with your money.

No, not "can't use it", but "can't copy it". (1)

nelsonrn (2165) | more than 15 years ago | (#2014917)

You're right that if the EULA is invalid, people would only have the default permissions that copyright law grants them -- that is, none. However, they don't have that permission, nor a lot of other permissions, under the EULA.

People would still have the legal right to use the software, however.

Copying Windows? What morons.. (1)

Jeff Licquia (2167) | more than 15 years ago | (#2014918)

That's true. The problem is that you've paid Microsoft for the privilege of using the software. If you can't use the software for whatever reason (such as not agreeing to the license), they have to give you a refund.

If MS forces you to pay the money, even if you don't agree to the license, then the contract is coerced. That means that the contract is no longer valid.

You are correct in that copyright still applies. However, the provisions in the EULA go way beyond copyright; the provisions include things like no disassembly, no reverse-engineering, can only use on the computer you bought it with, etc. And nothing in copyright law says that, once you've bought and paid for a copy and possess it, that you can't use it. You can't copy it, of course, but you can use it on a single machine. And decompile it, and disassemble it, and reverse-engineer it, and remove it from one computer and reinstall it on another, etc.

They called a month ago (1)

tony@work (2206) | more than 15 years ago | (#2014919)

They called a month ago when arranging this thing. The offices were supposed to be open. Plus, MS has known about this event (and the timing of it) for at least a couple of weeks-- they have had official and unofficial reponses. You figure they could have mentioned it then, if the hours had changed.

Nope. They are just hiding. Scared of bad press-- so they figure no press is better.

Class Action Lawsuit! (1)

diakka (2281) | more than 15 years ago | (#2014920)

I'd imagine that the vast majority of these people already tried contacting their vendors. If the vendor won't do it, then it's only logical to go one step above the ladder. What you're saying is that the salesperson who sold you the product won't help you, so now you're SOL. No point in trying to go to his superior. Since this seems to be a problem that spans companies who are all selling MS OSs, I'd say a class action lawsuit is well founded. But then again, IANAL... but I'd also bet that YANALE. Here's my view of the situation. MS wrote the license, the EULA is an agreement between the user and MS.

It would seem to me that MS would be able to handle some freaking frefunds. I mean what percentage of people will actually want a refund? 1 or 2% maybe? Hell it would be virtually 0 if their contracts with OEM's weren't so restrictive.


So did anyone actually get $$$$$ back?? (1)

Rendus (2430) | more than 15 years ago | (#2014921)

Well from what I understand, the dorks all went to their local Microsoft office instead of the OEM that sold them the PC with Windows pre-installed, which is what they have to do to get a refund.

So no, they didn't get money back. Why? They were barking up the wrong side of the tree. It WAS the right tree, however.

Re: What? (1)

Rendus (2430) | more than 15 years ago | (#2014922)

I'd also like to point out several vendors do push out boxes with alternative OSes preinstalled, and make quite a nice business out of doing so...

I refer, of course, to VA Research, Penguin Computing, and the others that I can't remember the name of (because I don't buy prebuilt computers, not that they're not worth remembering.)

Windows Refund Day (1)

Rendus (2430) | more than 15 years ago | (#2014923)

Just thought I'd point out, Userfriendly.org's comic today is about Refund Day kind of... I thought it was funny anyways.

_President_'s Day??? (1)

gas (2801) | more than 15 years ago | (#2014928)

Well, I don't know if this is what it sounds like but if:

Is this really a holiday about a damn politician? A live and even a currently ruling one???

Wow, I can see them try something like that here (Sweden). A day for Göran Persson hahahaha, he wouldn't dare to set his foot in the country for 30 years, and I wouldn't want to be them the next elections...

However, we've done the "place of purchase" thing. (1)

Svartalf (2997) | more than 15 years ago | (#2014929)

And the places of purchase more often than not say "no" to the refund- which the contract plainly indicates is supposed to happen.

Pictures? (1)

dattaway (3088) | more than 15 years ago | (#2014930)

I was unable to attend this event and would really like to see some narrated pictures. Please? :)

Windows Piracy (1)

Prothonotar (3324) | more than 15 years ago | (#2014932)

Hey, since some are suggesting that the EULA is between the OEM and the end user, then how could Microsoft uphold the anti-piracy aspects of the EULA? Shouldn't the OEMs be responsible for that as well?
Aaron Gaudio
"The fool finds ignorance all around him.

_President_'s Day??? No...Presidents' Day!!! (1)

Prothonotar (3324) | more than 15 years ago | (#2014933)

Presidents' Day came about when Nixon combined Washington's birthday (originally the 11th, now the 22nd after the 11-day calender adjustment) with Abraham Lincoln's (the 12th) to be on the 3rd Monday of February, and it now commemorates all *past* presidents, living or dead.
Aaron Gaudio
"The fool finds ignorance all around him.

What you can really expect for a refund.... (1)

Prothonotar (3324) | more than 15 years ago | (#2014934)

Every major OEM (Dell, Gateway, etc) licenses Windows on a *per-platform* basis, not *per-computer*. What that means is that the copy of Windows you are getting was licensed by Microsoft as part of every copy of Windows on that particular model of computer.

This does *not* mean the copy of Windows was free. What it does mean is that the real value will be the cost of the OEM's license divided by the number of computers of that model the OEM has installed the software onto. So you shouldn't expect to get very much (unless it's a new model with a small production size), but since money was never the real motivation here, you can give all the affected OEMs a big headache when you demand to know how much your license was worth.

IANAL here, but the most secure way of getting a refund would probably be to find out before hand how much the individual license would be sold for (by the OEM) if it were listed seperately from the computer; because otherwise, the OEM can just argue that the license had no value by itself and therefore you would receive a refund of nothing (although you could probably make them accept the unused software at their expense, and print you a check for $0.00 ;-) Then if you wanted to fight, you'd have to bring an anti-trust suit against the OEM for bundling the software with the hardware (note that Microsoft would not be liable for this, pricing schemes notwithstanding, unless their license with the OEM specifically stated they could *not* remove the software prior to sale).

Perhaps this scenario is even better for the movement than people getting $90 bucks back, because it would highlight Microsoft's licensing schemes with OEMs (which could be considered exclusionary, or predatory pricing) and would also highlight the OEMs' bundling practices. It also sets up MS and numerous big OEMs for a class-action anti-trust suit (has there every been such a thing?) with a much more solid argument than anything having to do with Internet Explorer bundling. Here, the bundling is clear because hardware and software are obviously seperate products.
Aaron Gaudio
"The fool finds ignorance all around him.

Windows Piracy (1)

Prothonotar (3324) | more than 15 years ago | (#2014935)

I'm not talking about damages resulting from copyright infringement, I'm talking about damages resulting from violation of the EULA. You yourself said that the license with the end user is between end user and OEM. Therefore any violations of the license must be managed by the OEM and not Microsoft (unless you purchases a shrink-wrapped edition). Not just copying [which would be a violation of copyright], but reverse-engineering, transferring to another computer (not a violation of copyright as long as one copy exists), etc, etc. Microsoft can only ensure that the OEM is not violating *it's* license between it and Microsoft.
Aaron Gaudio
"The fool finds ignorance all around him.

Take it to court! (1)

Puff (3954) | more than 15 years ago | (#2014937)

Microsoft has to stand by their license. If they won't abide by it, then they should face appropriate legal penalties.

Those poor, ignorant fools. (1)

Fogie (4006) | more than 15 years ago | (#2014938)

Boy, this should knock some wind out of the already-sputtering M$ defense in the DOJ suit. Reading all of the horror stories of people trying to get a refund, there's only one word to describe the OEM-Microsoft relationship: MONOPOLY. M$ can't sit there and say they don't hold a monopoly when every major OEM is REQUIRED to sell systems with windoze installed, regardless of what the consumer wants/needs. That's bad business, folks, and I dearly hope M$ pays the price... BIG TIME.

Re: What? (1)

Fogie (4006) | more than 15 years ago | (#2014939)

You've missed the point. Regardless of what's popular and in demand, consumers are being forced to pay for Windows whether they like it or not.
These people aren't even asking for alternative OS's... they'd like to install it themselves, yet the OEM's are telling them they have a contract with Microsoft that requires every machine they crank out have Windows installed. Could this be one reason why consumers are so hooked on Windows, because it's being jammed up every orifice from every marketing angle? You betcha! Millions of people like Coke, but that doesn't mean when I walk into a store it's the only drink available. Defend M$ all you like, but consumers have the right to free choice, especially when shelling out thousands of dollars for a computer. Frankly, I find $$$ more appealing than a shoddy OS I wouldn't use anyways.

Locked the floor? (1)

Eric Smith (4379) | more than 15 years ago | (#2014941)

Somebody outa report them to the Fire Marshall!
Why? The locks on the stairwell doors only keep people out, they don't keep people in.

What? What do you mean `What?' (1)

Odinson (4523) | more than 15 years ago | (#2014942)


You said ...

`Any company is free not to do business with M$, and then they do not have to pay their "tax."'

Simply put it isn't that simple.

From what I understood, the root of the problem is that OEMs are strong armed into taking an all or nothing approach to bundling Windows, with any given line of machines they sell. With Windows at 90% of market (I don't remember the source of that figure, I think it's based on M$ licence sales) it is impossible for that OEM to sell two OSes one of which is non-MS, on any line. It dosn't take a marketing genius to figure that selling X machines on a given line, without Windows, could only be justified by guarenteed 50% of the sales(assuming the mark-up is the same) plus enough sales to offset the additional cost of buying unused licences for each of those machines. Again it dosn't take a MBA to figure out that any new, potentially competitive, (non-Windows) OS will have to overcome the burden of going from zero or close to zero users, to enough users to buy at least, say 80% of the computers, in a given line.

/* Begin rant code block

How would you suggest that a development team go about making an OS that is can beat the long term viability arguement(FUD) and robust enough to lure away enough people from M$ to take over 80 percent or more of any computer line? The only people capable of installing and using a brand new OS with a high number of new features and configurability are the geeks. Many uses of computers in the market require a high level of dependibility that M$ can't (or won't) deliver, so those businesses look away from M$ for solutions. The risk of direct punishment from is M$ is lessened because of the DOJ case, and many OEMs are in brave fashion. Risking server lines now is a bit like a desperate cry for help on the part of the OEMs to geeks and the business. If the DOJ case ends tommorow and there still is a M$ after the dust settles, they will be looking to punish deviants. The server lines offered now are a testement to the sheer numbers of Linux users and the desperation of companies like Dell and Compaq to be able to make their own rules.

The installation of any OS is a hard battle for most people to overcome. The masses don't know enough to know who to trust, so they go to the big OEM's to protect them. The day all OEM's are allowed to sell low end systems to the masses (under five hundred dollars) with a non-M$ OS preinstalled with M$ adding a total financial burden of 0 dollars to the cost, is the day you see M$ actually have to compete.

end rant code block*/

Hear is a relevent definition, see one of many mobster movies for useage.

rack'et, n.[probably echoic.]

3. (a) an obtaining of money illegally, as by bootlegging, fraud, or, especially, threats of violence;(b) any dishonest scheme or practice;

President's Day - you mean Mardi Gras? (1)

cthonious (5222) | more than 15 years ago | (#2014945)

I have a OEM copy of Blows 95 still in shrink wrap, but I'm still too busy drinking ... maybe whne I recover later this week I'll return it

Changing licenses (1)

Julian Morrison (5575) | more than 15 years ago | (#2014947)

Besides, don't most licenses contain lines stating that the license may be changed without warning?

So they can change the license under you to "you now owe us everything you have ever owned, currently own, and ever will own. You consent to being shot if you so much as murmur disagreement."

Or not.

No corporate lawyer worth a streetsweeper's salary would let their boss sign a blank cheque that big.

Locked the floor? (1)

jmpvm (6160) | more than 15 years ago | (#2014952)

Somebody outa report them to the Fire Marshall! Hahaha

Notebooks? (1)

nuxx (10153) | more than 15 years ago | (#2014958)

What about those who are in need of a bit more integrated machine such as a notebook? While it's nice having access to OEM notebook parts, I know that not everyone has such access. Most retailers won't carry parts so that consumers to build their own notebooks because they are aware of all the warranty risks involved. We need to find a nice, high quality notebook manufacturer who is willing to sell a tested, bare machine.

Pirate MS products? (1)

RedOctober (10155) | more than 15 years ago | (#2014959)

Now why would we want to do that? We have Linux, after all....

Refund day lockout (1)

Aglassis (10161) | more than 15 years ago | (#2014960)

Sounds to me that Microsoft was afraid that Linux (or others, of course) users were going to harass them in their offices or cause damage. I wonder if thats unfounded.... At least they were prepared, thats a plus!


The Chewbacca defense? (1)

lcracker (10398) | more than 15 years ago | (#2014962)

It goes something like this.. johnny cochrane is talking about endor, the ewok's and chewbacca and then says:

Why am I talking about Chewbacca when a man's life is on the line?

Why? I'll tell you why. I don't know. It doesn't make sense. If Chewbacca does not make sense you must acquit. Here look at the monkey.

Contracts, outright lies, and outcasting users. (1)

FireReaper (11087) | more than 15 years ago | (#2014964)

Boy, reading this really gives me the warm
fuzzy feeling about Microsoft. The same kind of
warm fuzzy feeling one get's when a bottle of
hot sauce is rammed up your rear end, that is.

This could have been THE big chance of MS to
improve their public image and reaffirm to Win-
Users everywhere that MS is still there to back
them up. They could have performed the refund as
an act of good faith and goodwill to both the
public at large and the DOJ.

But no. Like the tight a**'d, customer screwing
brute that they are, MS decides to lock out the
very movement which could have helped them. I mean,
come on. All these people wanted was a measly
$50 or so check from the company. Is that so
damn hard to provide? Probably. And if so, then
they have real problems. As right now, MS is
in the realm of "can-do-no-right".

EULA's are contracts between two or more parties.
As the EULA is worded, the parties are the
producer(MS), the end-user(US), and the place of
purchase(Wherever you bought the software).

In the words of the EULA, the refund has to come
from the supplier. Be it the store, the shop
where the computer was bought, or wherever. If they
don't honour the EULA contract, then the users
should contact the producer of the EULA of the
software. In this case, MS.

They made the crappy software. They wrote the
EULA. They are the one's who enter into contracts
with VAR's and OEM's where a refund is not possible.

It sounds like they want to sell software and
put into place a scheme where no refund is possible.

If this is true, they are violating consumer rights.

They are violating their contractual agreements.

This also means that they are liable for their
product since they don't honour their side of
the agreement, we don't have to honour ours.

Did Windows crash and cost you money? Did a
security hole in your WinOS allow people to steal
your credit card numbers? Personal info? Allow
people to crash you from afar?

I think it's time to give back to MS what they
have given to us for so god damn long.

What goes around comes around, and it is high
time that MS got a taste of the shit that they
have been pouring down our throats for who knows
how long.

Don't pirate their software. Why would you want
to violate federal law AND spread windows? If any
thing, write letters to your representatives in
the house. In the senate. Write letters to the
better business beurouas. Let the people in
official positions know what shit we are going

But don't pirate. Pirating is NOT the way to go. They were
unlawful in their conduct, we shouldn't have to
sink to their level.

MS turned their backs on the license agreement.

They should realise the legal entailments of that
action. And people who have lost countless hours
worth of work and customers because the system
crashed, should be compensated for their losses.

Money isn't the important factor. It is basic
responsibility. A contract which was accepted in
good faith between parties. A contract which has
not only not been honoured, but one which has
been encapsulated in a system of contracts where
a refund is either improbable or incredibly hard
to obtain through normal means.

Money isn't the goal. But money is one of the few
things the company in question understands. And if
that is the only method of redressment, then that
is what should be reclaimed.

Just my two cents.

My apologies for the emotionally tinged post. but just hearing about their about turn face at such a public event and their disgraceful actions at a time when they should be attentive to the customers is a disgrace to any business.

- Wing
- Reap the fires of the soul.
- Harvest the passion of life.

Alternative to OS Tax!! (1)

FireReaper (11087) | more than 15 years ago | (#2014965)

Build your own computers. Install whichever OS YOU
want to install and run!

VAR's and OEM's suffer because of their contracts.
And as so many people have pointed out, it is because
many people want WINOS that the OEM's stock it.

While I believe that to be false, I also believe
that people should have the full rights to chose.

If that means building your own computer, then why
the hell not? you get to chose the parts and better
yet, you get to see which parts work for Linux and
buy accordingly.

OEM's need us. Not the otherway around. When they
wise up to the growing need of alternative OS's in
the market, then it may be worthwhile to go back.
But for those who can, why not make your own
computer and avoid windows completely?

Why pay them to wait for a refund when you can
avoid them completely and not ever have to shed
a penny in their direction?

I speak from personal experience as I've not
bought a prepackaged computer system in my life.
My systems being built from from parts of my
chosing and the OS of my choice. (Linux).

If you don't know how or lack knowledge of building
computers, take that $50-$100 that you would have
spent on Windows and spend it on a good book.

Read and learn. Then go and buy the parts to build
your system. Avoid companies who FORCE you to
buy a Windows system.

Crashes aren't appealing or sexy. They cost money
and detracts from the enjoyment of entertainment.

Lost term papers due to a crash sucks. Frozen systems
during an art project bites. Knowing you actually
paid for this faulty software is sad, but knowing
you could have avoided all this is when it really stings.

Learn and build your own. Free yourself from
another limited system running a limited OS.

- Wing
- Reap the fires of the soul.
- Harvest the passion of life.

Windows Piracy - PLEASE DON'T, because... (1)

Dr.Dubious DDQ (11968) | more than 15 years ago | (#2014969)

Pirating Windows software is like scratching a
poison ivy rash. It feels good for a moment, but
causes the rash to spread.

I honestly and truly believe that software piracy
is responsible for Microsoft's stranglehold on
the OS market - what proportion of small offices
bought one copy of Windows 3.1, then went ahead
and copied it to all of their office PC's, despite
the license limitation? How many of the employees of said small offices "borrowed" the same windows disks to take them home and install them?

And...how many would have done so if they'd been FORCED to PAY full price for a license for each use? A much smaller proportion, I suspect. Now, all of those pirates are stuck in a metaphorical rut. Every new Microsoft release gets bought (because the One Copy doesn't cost that much, and 'the boss' isn't familiar with the problems, and merely assumes that the 'new version will fix everything'.). Everyone in the office who's pirated the software has to also pirate the New Product so that they can use the files produced on the one legally licensed machine. The cycle repeats itself, the problem spreads....

All I have to say is I hope Microsoft's anti-piracy crusade succeeds wildly...when it comes down to "pay up or get rid of Windows", hopefully a few people will think, and choose the latter option...

...reverse engineering (1)

Wokan (14062) | more than 15 years ago | (#2014972)

I'm sure someone must have reverse engineered some parts of Winblows by now. Even a lump of cole as big as that must have a couple of little diamonds worth extracting in it.

Spotted on the M$ website...
"Many of our employees have never written a line of code."

Reverting to Copyright (1)

Wokan (14062) | more than 15 years ago | (#2014973)

Hey, if no one but Microsoft used their crap, it wouldn't bother me whatsoever.

Re: What? (1)

John Zachary (14636) | more than 15 years ago | (#2014974)

I think you are missing the point to why 99.999% of the people buy computers. It isn't to spend countless sleepless hours tweaking /etc files or poring through video card and monitor docs to make sure settings will work under X Windoze. It isn't because they want to make sure they are using kernel version by recompiling their kernel every other day. It isn't to use vi/emacs/gcc/gdb to write their own check balancing program from scratch in C because current offerings have some obscure bug that can't be fixed because the former developers got bored with the project. It isn't because they want to go out and learn obscure markup commands in LaTeX to help their kids write a report for school or update their resume.

No, it's because for 99.999% of the people who buy computers want an integrated solution that works. They don't care about source code. They don't care about some counterculture movement that proclaims everything that isn't free in the economic sense as "junk". Word works. Games work. Internet access works. Visual C++ works (great). Quicken works.

I have used Linux, BeOS, Nextstep, and NT. I do things with my computer that most people do and things that very few people do. I have had fewer problems with NT than I ever had with Linux (Of course, the Linux-heads will doubt my Unix abilities. That's fine, but you don't know what they are.)

Don't want to use MS products? Don't. But don't go blabbering about choice if you are going to advocate that people shouldn't use Anything But Linux (ABL).

Rock off. (1)

HardCase (14757) | more than 15 years ago | (#2014978)

I, for one, am glad that I was not there. While I don't particularly like the way that Microsoft writes and markets its software, I also don't ally myself with buffoons.

That's right, buffoons. Microsoft clearly and correctly made the point that if you bought Windows 9x bundled with a computer, then you must contact the vendor to arrange for a refund. Microsoft is not the vendor!

Did you buy your computer from Dell? Gateway? Micron? Toshiba? Sony? Those are vendors! Those are the companies that you need to contact.

And whomever said that if one part of the license was invalid meant that the license as a whole is invalid is not only wrong, but had the gall to follow up his demonstration of ignorance with advocation of software piracy. What a moron! Do we get to look forward to free/open software supporters being lumped together with software pirates?

All in all, I think that "refund day" was nothing more than a juvenile publicity stunt that was doomed to failure. The very idea of scheduling the stunt for a US federal holiday virtually guaranteed that the Microsoft offices would be closed.

A victory? Sure...a great publicity victory for Microsoft...and a significant step backward for the legitimacy of Linux and open software.

Thanks guys...for nothing.

Rock off. (1)

HardCase (14757) | more than 15 years ago | (#2014979)

Not so. Absolutely not so. The EULA informs you that you must contact your vendor for instructions on returning the product for a refund.

So here's the rub. What happens if the vendor says, "Look, we bundled the copy of Windows with your system and we're not going to unbundle it. Send the whole computer back."

What do you do? It strikes me that you have one of three choices. You send the computer back and buy one from a company that offers you a choice (VA, Penguin, etc.), you keep the computer and throw Windows off in a corner somewhere, or you keep complaining to the vendor until you either get the answer that you want, you get tired of complaining, or you realize that you are fighting a futile battle.

I worked for one of the big computer companies that sells Microsoft products. The policy was that if you didn't want Windows, then you could return the computer. That fit the letter of the EULA. Those were the instructions to be followed if you wanted to return Windows...box up the computer and return the whole works for a refund.

None of these vendors have refused to honor their obligations. They just haven't done things your way. Welcome to the real world. Sometimes you don't get your way.

the sheet = 404, dude. (1)

HardCase (14757) | more than 15 years ago | (#2014980)

Sheesh. Can you read?

It won't be posted until 20:00 pst. That's 8:00pm. Duh. It's 4:40pm pst right now.

Dude. You really are SAD.

Elevators not working (1)

ibis (16191) | more than 15 years ago | (#2014984)

Uh, did you try the STAIRS?

President's Day? (1)

smallworld1 (17763) | more than 15 years ago | (#2014987)

Well there are pro's and cons. Yes, it gave Micro$oft and excuse to say they were closed. However, we were previously told that they would be open. Holidays are generally slower news days giving less competition for TV time or inches in the paper. Plus this is the first weekday after the impeachment trial. People have allegedly been saying that they are sick of this trial and sick of all of the coverage. Although I don't think it will be over for awhile, I do think that on this first weekday after the trial the news shows on CNBC, CNN, and MSNBC(well maybe not MSNBC althougth they did have an interview with Linus) will make an honest effort to cover something else. Tomorrow it will be back to the normal of the parsing Slick Willies words.

Legality of Piracy (1)

mortein (17837) | more than 15 years ago | (#2014989)

Although the lifts were dissabled to the floor isn't it possible for Microsoft to say that they weren't functioning properly and are not responsible?

However, if in fact they have forfit they're license agreement on one count, does this mean it is forfit on all counts? ie. other microsoft software products.


First hand report for Foster City, CA (1)

jlterman (17853) | more than 15 years ago | (#2014990)

Microsoft headquarters in Silicon Valley is currently in Foster City, just a few miles north of the gleaming green towers of Oracle. They occupy the now infamous 9th floor of an office building in between the world headquarters for Visa.

I showed up around 10:30 AM on my own and found it very quiet with only signs pointing the way to the "Linux Event" (sic) (a nice piece of Microsoft spin). I found my way up to the top floor of the parking garage where the press was assembled listening to a Microsoft spokesman explaining how customers have plenty of choice in their OS and the popularity of Windows is only due to its high quality. At this point only me and a handful of other people had shown up for the demonstration and we quickly found ourselves being interviewed by the press. I talked to 3 reporters.

A little after noon the main contingent arrived to demand their refunds. Led by Eric Raymond (dressed as a Jedi Knight!), they marched through the parking garage up to the top floor in an orderly fashion. Several placards were carried ("I don't do Windows", "No Taxation without Open Source", "Pro-Choice"), and penguins were plentiful. I should emphasize that the BSD people had a strong presence at the demonstration.

For the next half-hour, there was much interviewing by the press and a debate between Eric Raymond and the sole Microsoft spokesman (as far as I know, he was the only Microsoft employee that anybody saw). Finally, several attempts were made to gain access to the Microsoft office to demand a refund.

After finding the parking garage entrance barred, we walked down to the courtyard of the building in an attempt to take the elevator. I had used that same elevator to get to the fourth floor to gain access to the top of the parking garage (an entrance later blocked). 7 people at a time, accompanied by the press, attempted to gain access to the ninth floor. The elevator was working, but was programmed not to stop at the ninth floor. After several attempts, eventually the police blocked the courtyard and at 1:45 PM we marched away (voluntarily) with not one refund handed out.

All in all, about a few hundred supporters of the Free/Open Source Community showed up with perhaps around thirty people actually demanding refunds. There were at least twenty members of the press, both print and media and I talked to reporters from AP, Wall Street Journal and the San Jose Mercury News. They struck me as skeptical of Microsoft and sympathetic, but I was not very clear on how much they understood the philosophy of the Free/Open Source Community. But they seemed very willing to let me try to explain it to them. Microsoft stuck to its party line of that you have to get your refund from your OEM or the store from where you purchased it.

I would call the event a success. There was plenty of press, a lot of high (but peaceful) spirits and Microsoft's arrogant stonewalling did not impress anyone (no sign of a counter-demonstration by the way).
No one got their refunds, but I think an important point was made. I would have advised Microsoft to give people their refunds. Only a tiny percentage of people would ever demand a refund and the good publicity would more than make up for the loss of revenue. Of course, the issue was never money. Neither the people demanding refunds, nor the OEM's refusing them are worried about the money involved. The people who want their refunds do not want to pay for something they are not using on principle. The OEM's, for now, do want to anger Microsoft. And, Microsoft seems afraid that what would be a trickle today could be a flood tomorrow.

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