Subject: Brand name aspirin
From: Brian Bartholomew <bb@wv.com>
Date: Fri, 8 Oct 1999 16:16:06 -0400

Today I went to the store, and looked at the display of brand name
aspirin next to generic aspirin.  In the US, brand name and generic
drugs must be -- by law -- functionally identical.  I saw two packages
with the same dosage, same coating, and same count, that differed in
price by over a factor of two.  If it works for aspirin, I shouldn't
be surprised it works for software.  My amplifier goes to 11.

The store had marked one particular generic as a "special", with a
sign comparing its price to the brand name.  The same generic bottle
in a box was 10% less than the special only two feet away.  In my
perfect world, advertising something as better when you (the brand
name drug company) know it's identical, and advertising something as a
special when you (the store) know it isn't, would be trade fraud.


A member of the League for Programming Freedom (LPF) http://lpf.ai.mit.edu
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Brian Bartholomew - bb@wv.com - www.wv.com - Working Version, Cambridge, MA