Codebreaker

Microsoft used as tool of repression by Russian government

John Moe Sep 13, 2010

A New York Times article got plenty of buzz in tech circles over the weekend. It’s about how the Russian government is using the construct of the Microsoft license agreement to crack down and silence dissenters and activist groups. What happens is the authorities will raid an office or organizing location under the premises of making sure that all copies of Windows are licensed. Then they take the computers belonging to those groups, on which is all their organizing information. Lawyers for Microsoft have said they support the government’s efforts, saying it’s necessary to stop software piracy. But now the company is backtracking, saying they’re concerned about the situation and vow to have closer oversight of legal issues in Russia.

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