Subject: Re: HBS WK: Who will win Microsoft or Linux?
From: "Stephen J. Turnbull" <>
Date: Tue, 07 Jun 2005 11:08:14 +0900

> How does it benefit Microsoft to have a lot of poor people using it's
> systems? They make the argument that it does, but I just don't get that
> one.
> I do get how piracy could be helpful to Microsoft IF people then
> other MS products, or bought an MS OS upgrade, but just having Windows
> on a lot of boxes of people who won't pay for software... that doesn't
> do Microsoft any good at all.

Think of a developing country where the vast majority of people with
computers would have to spend a year's wages to buy a legitimate copy
of Windows, but where the economy is expected to grow and people are
expected to get richer.

Once the country becomes richer, all the people who run Linux and have
experience using Linux become part of the market for Linux-based
applications and tools.  All the people who run pirated copies of
Windows and have experience using Windows become part of the market
for Windows-based applications and tools, *and furthermore*, they (or
their employers) have enough money that Microsoft can start enforcing
their copyrights.

School of Systems and Information Engineering
University of Tsukuba                    Tennodai 1-1-1 Tsukuba 305-8573 JAPAN
               Ask not how you can "do" free software business;
              ask what your business can "do for" free software.