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Author Topic: Interesting court case in France  (Read 3374 times)
Lyn
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Posts: 651



« on: September 26, 2007, 12:06:59 pm »

http://www.channelregister.co.uk/2007/09/26/acer_laptop_microsoft_windows_french_ruling/

From The Register.... worth a read.
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MikeCindi
Tester
Vectorian
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Posts: 1073


« Reply #1 on: September 26, 2007, 03:22:23 pm »

IF this sets a precedent then the price of laptops may go up in price. I doubt that Acer's cost for the software listed is that much. The awarded amount appears to be close to retail prices which are not the same as OEM prices. OTH getting the machine without any preloaded software shouldn't cost as much as one that does come with the software. Again a precedent will possibly change the way PCs are marketed (e.g. with and without software) which may not be much in favor of the consumer. Time will tell...
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The plans of the diligent lead to profit...Pro. 21:5
VL64 7.1b3                                     RLU 486143
GrannyGeek
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Posts: 2567


« Reply #2 on: September 26, 2007, 04:54:27 pm »

It's my understanding that computer manufacturers are paid something by software makers for including preloaded software. If it means I have a few dollars knocked off the price of a computer I buy, I'll gladly spend the time to get rid of the "crapware," as many call it. Others would prefer to pay more for a computer without all the junk software and trial versions.

Maybe this case is a triumph of ideology over reality.
--GrannyGeek
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Registered Linux User #397786

Happily running VL 7 Gold on  a Sempron LE-1300 desktop (2.3 GHz), 4 G RAM,  GeForce 6150 SE onboard graphics and on an HP Pavilion dv7 i7, 6 gigs, Intel 2nd Generation Integrated Graphics Controller
carsten
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Posts: 137


I know why birds sing ...


« Reply #3 on: September 26, 2007, 10:47:40 pm »

Hy,
according to my view all three parties (Acer salesman, client and court) should be ordered to spent some time in a decent madmans refugee for mental adjustment

1) The Acer salesman by not making a decent attemp to find out and satisfy a custumers demand (see also ISO 9001 requirements)

2) The client for being a penetrant busybody, asking a courthouse to make his personal idea of a good deal work instead of leaving Acer alone or doing his negotiations by himselve

3) The courthouse for unproffesional attitude (Under the judgement, the court said Acer should also cough up €500 in fees to cover what it described as "abusive resistance and committed expenses") when one of the parties just making use of the legal options they have

Finally, nothing significant will change. If I want the hardware I can ask for re-imbursement if I do not use the bundled software. If the offer does not find my appreciation, I have to try somewhere else. If I am going to the restaurant "Golden Arc" I have to accept the menu. If I insist on Shis-Kebbab I have to go somewhere else.

Just my view,
Carsten
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Tam exacte ut oportet, non ut licet!
Lyn
Vectorian
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Posts: 651



« Reply #4 on: September 26, 2007, 11:12:47 pm »

At the low end of the market computers have been sold for years with bundled software, most of it superfluous or useless.  A frequent marketing ploy has been to say you get software worth £x free with your machine.  To me its a rational request for a cheaper machine - minus the cost of the assorted software that you don't want.  If a vendor can't provide that, and has a large part of the market then they could be said to be abusing their dominant position if they don't offer such an option and charge accordingly.  That is my reading of the French Court's decision.  Plus it effectively had punitive damages imposed on it (a one off not for everyone) for being obstinate in not swiftly offering a lower price for a naked machine.  Of course in future they should discount the machine to the cost of what they pay for the software bundle rather than the retail cost of that software. 
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SuSE-Refugee
Ex-Officio
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Posts: 205


Dude In The Snappy Hat


« Reply #5 on: September 27, 2007, 11:50:58 am »

In related news: Neelie Kroes(E.C. dealing with competition-issues) is working on rulings to make (forced)bundling illegal alltogether.
I'm all in favour of it.
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<Lame sig>
BlueMage
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Posts: 274



« Reply #6 on: September 27, 2007, 01:43:35 pm »

Maybe that's why I'm so reluctant to give up my Acer Travelmate (despite keys no longer working and overheating becoming a bigger and bigger issue) - there was practically no bundled software.  Then again, it was intended for student use, so I guess they figure the students won't want bundled software anyways.  Ah, back in the days when widescreen laptops were the exception, not the rule...
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Acer Laptop:  Vector 5.8 SOHO Final & Windows XP Professional & USB (still alive!)
Compaq POS (almost dead): Vector 5.9 Light Beta 5
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Old 500MHz media box:  Vector 5.8 SOHO Final (dead)
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rbistolfi
Packager
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Posts: 2288


« Reply #7 on: September 27, 2007, 04:13:56 pm »

Well, I am looking for a new machine, and here I can save the Win license, so the price is lower for a blank computer. But I guess different countries makes different agreements between ms and the hw sellers.
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"There is a concept which corrupts and upsets all others. I refer not to Evil, whose limited realm is that of ethics; I refer to the infinite."
Jorge Luis Borges, Avatars of the Tortoise.

--
Jumalauta!!
GrannyGeek
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« Reply #8 on: September 30, 2007, 09:26:59 pm »

I know it's stylish to complain about bundled software, but I don't see what's so awful about it. It doesn't cost the computer maker (and buyer) money. The software makers pay to have the stuff included--you know, product placement and getting their stuff before the eyes of the customer.

In the past 20 months I've bought two computers. Both came with the usual load of crapware. So within an hour I got rid of what I didn't want (Wild Tangent, Norton and McAfee, trial versions of Microsoft Office, etc.) and kept what had some utility (Microsoft Works, Microsoft Money). I use Linux a lot more than Windows, but I don't throw away something that didn't cost me anything just to make an ideological point.
--GrannyGeek
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Registered Linux User #397786

Happily running VL 7 Gold on  a Sempron LE-1300 desktop (2.3 GHz), 4 G RAM,  GeForce 6150 SE onboard graphics and on an HP Pavilion dv7 i7, 6 gigs, Intel 2nd Generation Integrated Graphics Controller
newt
Vectorian
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Posts: 1132



« Reply #9 on: September 30, 2007, 10:21:32 pm »

I know it's stylish to complain about bundled software, but I don't see what's so awful about it. It doesn't cost the computer maker (and buyer) money. The software makers pay to have the stuff included--you know, product placement and getting their stuff before the eyes of the customer.
Bundled software is awful because of many reasons: 1) The amount that gets loaded by the big, brand-name companies, 2) The cycle that many users get locked into because of general user naïveté (i.e. subscriptions, updates, etc), 3) The resources used by the bundled software and the associated reduced responsiveness of the system, 4) The required effort it takes to clean a system of the bundled software and take the system back a state that's close to what it was prior to the installation of the bundled software, and 5) The, IMHO, lack of quality applications that are chosen to be bundled.  Those are just a few of the reasons that I think bundled software is "awful." 

If the bundled software were freeware; required no fee subscriptions; had relatively small footprints; had an uninstallation routine that cleaned not only it's program and system files but all of it's registry entries; and was of satisfactory quality then I would not be opposed to the bundling.

If the bundled software was provided in an uninstalled manor then i would not be opposed to the bundling.  By "uninstalled manor" I mean: on a cd/dvd; provided as an installable package (exe); better yet, provided as an installable package with user options on which applications to install.

When I get a new already-loaded system I start by immediately wiping it and installing from scratch the correct way.  I do the same for my friends who get new pre-loaded systems.  The process takes HOURS to do and would not be necessary if the system came without preloaded crap.  Microsoft Office Trial is my favorite.  People (friends, friends of parents, etc) contact me explaning that they are getting a message from Office about 'trial has expired; reduced functionality mode; blah blah blah' at which point I have to explain that Office was simply a trial and only worked a certain number of times or day before expiration and that if they want to continue using Office then they would have to pay a few hundred dollars more <- thanks ms Grin
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Freston
Vectorite
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Posts: 165


« Reply #10 on: October 01, 2007, 02:34:09 am »

I think the major point of the trail is that the EULA says the buyer has the right to claim a refund from the OEM. Yet, in this case (and many like it) the OEM denies the buyer that right.

Hence the matter is not that the buyer shouldn't have bought an Acer because it's got bundled with software he didn't want. He had the right to take it of and ask for a refund.

Quote from: SuSE-Refugee
In related news: Neelie Kroes(E.C. dealing with competition-issues) is working on rulings to make (forced)bundling illegal alltogether.
I'm all in favour of it.
Source (PDF)
Yeah. It's an ... erm ... interesting development. The EU is very worried about the powerful monopoly of our friends in Redmond. I'm not sure yet on all it's implications however Undecided
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nightflier
Administrator
Vectorian
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Posts: 4026



« Reply #11 on: October 01, 2007, 04:14:39 am »

... contact me explaning that they are getting a message from Office about 'trial has expired; reduced functionality mode; blah blah blah' at which point I have to explain that Office was simply a trial and only worked a certain number of times or day before expiration and that if they want to continue using Office then they would have to pay a few hundred dollars more <- thanks ms Grin

Heh, I got one of those calls from a friend. My first thought was to just use another app to read the files. Not much luck with the Office2007 format. Next suggestion was to export to another format. Guess what? That functionality is disabled in the trial. Copy and paste? Nope, that is locked too. So if she wanted to keep the documents she had created, she would have to pay the ransom. Finally, what I had been saying about open standards and formats made sense. OpenOffice from now on.
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Freston
Vectorite
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Posts: 165


« Reply #12 on: October 01, 2007, 09:10:22 am »

Quote from: newtor
Heh, I got one of those calls from a friend. My first thought was to just use another app to read the files. Not much luck with the Office2007 format. Next suggestion was to export to another format. Guess what? That functionality is disabled in the trial. Copy and paste? Nope, that is locked too. So if she wanted to keep the documents she had created, she would have to pay the ransom. Finally, what I had been saying about open standards and formats made sense. OpenOffice from now on.

And all of a sudden, this makes sense:
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newt
Vectorian
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Posts: 1132



« Reply #13 on: October 01, 2007, 09:34:49 am »

And all of a sudden, this makes sense:


That's AWESOME!! lmao Grin
I can't believe I never thought of that Grin
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rbistolfi
Packager
Vectorian
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Posts: 2288


« Reply #14 on: October 01, 2007, 10:22:27 am »

LOL thats is useful.

@nightflyer: You really cant "explode" the o2007 file and get a plain text file, an xml one and the binaries? I wonder what is the point of the new format then.
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"There is a concept which corrupts and upsets all others. I refer not to Evil, whose limited realm is that of ethics; I refer to the infinite."
Jorge Luis Borges, Avatars of the Tortoise.

--
Jumalauta!!
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