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Schools told to wipe Microsoft Office off Mac computers

 
 
peterwn
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Posts: n/a
 
      05-28-2007
See:

http://www.nzherald.co.nz/section/1/...442388&ref=rss

Microsoft wants the Education Ministry to pay for Microsoft licences for
MS Office on all Macs in schools although only half of them have the
suite loaded. Ministry said 'nix' and has told schools to delete
Microsoft Office from these machines.

It is a great pity that our kids have to suffer because elephants choose
to rumble.

However the good news is that Open Office is available for Mac OS X and
can be downloaded free or a CD (multi platform version) can be purchased
for $10 mail order (one CD will do a whole school and can be copied
legally - no per-seat licencing - it can even be lent to the kids to
install at home).
 
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peterwn
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Posts: n/a
 
      05-28-2007
Katipo wrote:

>
> Here was me thinking that even the greedy Microsoft wouldn't have the
> audacity to demand licence fees for software that computers don't have. Is
> there no level those guys won't stoop to?
>
> OpenOffice is the obvious solution for the affected schools. Not only will
> the kids be able to carry on with their normal work, but they will also get
> another valuable lesson - that you don't need to pay exorbitant licensing
> fees to get quality software!
>

Don't hold your breath. The NZ chief of Microsoft will probably be
seeing the Minister of Education today and there will be a
'confidential' settlement with a promise to see if the Government can in
effect pass some intellectual property rights from the 'commons' enjoyed
by all Kiwis to overseas corporations.
 
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Sue Bilstein
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Posts: n/a
 
      05-28-2007
On Tue, 29 May 2007 09:06:12 +1200, peterwn <(E-Mail Removed)>
wrote:
>Katipo wrote:
>
>>
>> Here was me thinking that even the greedy Microsoft wouldn't have the
>> audacity to demand licence fees for software that computers don't have. Is
>> there no level those guys won't stoop to?
>>
>> OpenOffice is the obvious solution for the affected schools. Not only will
>> the kids be able to carry on with their normal work, but they will also get
>> another valuable lesson - that you don't need to pay exorbitant licensing
>> fees to get quality software!
>>

>Don't hold your breath. The NZ chief of Microsoft will probably be
>seeing the Minister of Education today and there will be a
>'confidential' settlement with a promise to see if the Government can in
>effect


Er ...

>pass some intellectual property rights from the 'commons' enjoyed
>by all Kiwis to overseas corporations.



.... what do you mean by that?

Quid pro quo, Microsoft provides MS Office to schools in return for
copyright on schoolkids' artworks?
 
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Cosmik Debris
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Posts: n/a
 
      05-28-2007
On Tue, 29 May 2007 07:38:03 +1200, peterwn <(E-Mail Removed)>
wrote:

> See:
>
> http://www.nzherald.co.nz/section/1/...442388&ref=rss
>
> Microsoft wants the Education Ministry to pay for Microsoft licences for
> MS Office on all Macs in schools although only half of them have the
> suite loaded. Ministry said 'nix' and has told schools to delete
> Microsoft Office from these machines.
>
> It is a great pity that our kids have to suffer because elephants choose
> to rumble.
>
> However the good news is that Open Office is available for Mac OS X and
> can be downloaded free or a CD (multi platform version) can be purchased
> for $10 mail order (one CD will do a whole school and can be copied
> legally - no per-seat licencing - it can even be lent to the kids to
> install at home).


Yes, and NeoOffice is also available free, and is OpenOffice with the Mac
GUI.

--
Posted via a free Usenet account from http://www.teranews.com

 
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peterwn
Guest
Posts: n/a
 
      05-28-2007
Sue Bilstein wrote:
> On Tue, 29 May 2007 09:06:12 +1200, peterwn <(E-Mail Removed)>
> wrote:
>> Katipo wrote:
>>
>>> Here was me thinking that even the greedy Microsoft wouldn't have the
>>> audacity to demand licence fees for software that computers don't have. Is
>>> there no level those guys won't stoop to?
>>>
>>> OpenOffice is the obvious solution for the affected schools. Not only will
>>> the kids be able to carry on with their normal work, but they will also get
>>> another valuable lesson - that you don't need to pay exorbitant licensing
>>> fees to get quality software!
>>>

>> Don't hold your breath. The NZ chief of Microsoft will probably be
>> seeing the Minister of Education today and there will be a
>> 'confidential' settlement with a promise to see if the Government can in
>> effect

>
> Er ...
>
>> pass some intellectual property rights from the 'commons' enjoyed
>> by all Kiwis to overseas corporations.

>
>
> ... what do you mean by that?
>


I will give you hopefully) a very simple example. Disney had a
copyright on Micky Mouse for 50 years. Micky Mouse was about to go out
of copyright. So Disney successfully persuaded US Congress (campaign
contributions) to extend the copyright to 75 years. This effectively
means there is a transfer of wealth from the general public to an
individual corporation which the corporation has not earned. No one can
say that at the time Micky Mouse was created that the creation was so
momentous as to justify copyright for a longer period - Walt Disney
would have been quite delighted if Micky had lasted five years then
fizzed. This lobbying then continues to coerce the US Administration to
try and get other nations to 'harmonise' their legislation accordingly.
Now, limited copyright periods is a reasonable compromise between
protecting creaters' rights and avoiding 'works' being 'locked up'
indefinitely (since a creator is not obliged to make his or works
available to anyone while thy are in copyright). These public policy
principles were recognised by London judges over 200 years ago.

To give another example. NZ could come under pressure to make patents
easier to obtain, extend patents to currently unpatentable areas (eg
software) and enact draconian sanctions against alleged infringers (eg
automatic injunctions). With such a regime a local startup company
could be forced out of business for allegedly infringing a patent which
had no merit or was obtained by fraud (usual problems are triviality and
prior art, the latter meaning that the idea was not a new one). Such
patents would have a value out of all proportion to the creative work
put into them. Hence such a regime transfers valuable property rights
from New Zealand to overseas interests.

Australia got caught with this with its free trade agreement with USA.
John Howard's Government effectively gave away property rights
(including parts of the 'commons') belonging to the Australian people
which were worth billions of dollars. The law drafting people have
recognised the 'traps' and are drafting the laws as tight as possible to
salvage something. What is extremely galling with all this, is that USA
is trying to insist that other nations harmonise laws to USA laws when
the latter were enacted via undemocratic processes (excessive lobbying
coupled with campaign contributions).
 
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impossible
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Posts: n/a
 
      05-28-2007
"peterwn" <(E-Mail Removed)> wrote in message
news:465b4fad$(E-Mail Removed)...
> Sue Bilstein wrote:
>> On Tue, 29 May 2007 09:06:12 +1200, peterwn
>> <(E-Mail Removed)>
>> wrote:
>>> Katipo wrote:
>>>
>>>> Here was me thinking that even the greedy Microsoft wouldn't have
>>>> the audacity to demand licence fees for software that computers
>>>> don't have. Is there no level those guys won't stoop to?
>>>>
>>>> OpenOffice is the obvious solution for the affected schools. Not
>>>> only will the kids be able to carry on with their normal work,
>>>> but they will also get another valuable lesson - that you don't
>>>> need to pay exorbitant licensing fees to get quality software!
>>>>
>>> Don't hold your breath. The NZ chief of Microsoft will probably
>>> be seeing the Minister of Education today and there will be a
>>> 'confidential' settlement with a promise to see if the Government
>>> can in effect

>>
>> Er ...
>>
>>> pass some intellectual property rights from the 'commons' enjoyed
>>> by all Kiwis to overseas corporations.

>>
>>
>> ... what do you mean by that?

>
> I will give you hopefully) a very simple example. Disney had a
> copyright on Micky Mouse for 50 years. Micky Mouse was about to go
> out of copyright. So Disney successfully persuaded US Congress
> (campaign contributions) to extend the copyright to 75 years. This
> effectively means there is a transfer of wealth from the general
> public to an individual corporation which the corporation has not
> earned. No one can say that at the time Micky Mouse was created
> that the creation was so momentous as to justify copyright for a
> longer period - Walt Disney would have been quite delighted if Micky
> had lasted five years then fizzed. This lobbying then continues to
> coerce the US Administration to try and get other nations to
> 'harmonise' their legislation accordingly. Now, limited copyright
> periods is a reasonable compromise between protecting creaters'
> rights and avoiding 'works' being 'locked up' indefinitely (since a
> creator is not obliged to make his or works available to anyone
> while thy are in copyright). These public policy principles were
> recognised by London judges over 200 years ago.
>
> To give another example. NZ could come under pressure to make
> patents easier to obtain, extend patents to currently unpatentable
> areas (eg software) and enact draconian sanctions against alleged
> infringers (eg automatic injunctions). With such a regime a local
> startup company could be forced out of business for allegedly
> infringing a patent which had no merit or was obtained by fraud
> (usual problems are triviality and prior art, the latter meaning
> that the idea was not a new one). Such patents would have a value
> out of all proportion to the creative work put into them. Hence
> such a regime transfers valuable property rights from New Zealand to
> overseas interests.
>
> Australia got caught with this with its free trade agreement with
> USA. John Howard's Government effectively gave away property rights
> (including parts of the 'commons') belonging to the Australian
> people which were worth billions of dollars. The law drafting
> people have recognised the 'traps' and are drafting the laws as
> tight as possible to salvage something. What is extremely galling
> with all this, is that USA is trying to insist that other nations
> harmonise laws to USA laws when the latter were enacted via
> undemocratic processes (excessive lobbying coupled with campaign
> contributions).


Nice "simple example". But what does any of this have to do with
getting office software on school computers? It's money -- not
intellectual property -- that schools are going to end up parting
with. Either they pay that money to Microsoft for software licenses,
or they pay it to some service outfit to support the "free"
alternatives.


 
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peterwn
Guest
Posts: n/a
 
      05-29-2007
impossible wrote:
>
>>>
>>> ... what do you mean by that?


>
> Nice "simple example". But what does any of this have to do with
> getting office software on school computers?


Nothing. I was merely answering Sue's question about intellectual property.

> It's money -- not
> intellectual property -- that schools are going to end up parting
> with. Either they pay that money to Microsoft for software licenses,
> or they pay it to some service outfit to support the "free"
> alternatives.
>


And I agree that according to TCO studies undertaken by consultants
and the like funded or otherwise supported by Microsoft, the 'total
cost of ownership' of Linux is greater than for Windows - it is all
a matter of the ingredients - just like baking a cake.

Having said that, I think that it is an insult to the average school
computer technician, pupil or teacher to suggest that they need costly
professional assistance to obtain and load up OpenOffice on to a Mac
computer.

 
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Sue Bilstein
Guest
Posts: n/a
 
      05-29-2007
On Tue, 29 May 2007 12:06:03 +1200, peterwn <(E-Mail Removed)>
wrote:
>impossible wrote:
>>
>>>>
>>>> ... what do you mean by that?

>
>>
>> Nice "simple example". But what does any of this have to do with
>> getting office software on school computers?

>
>Nothing. I was merely answering Sue's question about intellectual property.


However, I was specifically asking about what you meant in relation to
software for schools.
-----
Er ...

>pass some intellectual property rights from the 'commons' enjoyed
>by all Kiwis to overseas corporations.



.... what do you mean by that?

Quid pro quo, Microsoft provides MS Office to schools in return for
copyright on schoolkids' artworks?
----


>
>> It's money -- not
>> intellectual property -- that schools are going to end up parting
>> with. Either they pay that money to Microsoft for software licenses,
>> or they pay it to some service outfit to support the "free"
>> alternatives.
>>

>
>And I agree that according to TCO studies undertaken by consultants
>and the like funded or otherwise supported by Microsoft, the 'total
>cost of ownership' of Linux is greater than for Windows - it is all
>a matter of the ingredients - just like baking a cake.
>
>Having said that, I think that it is an insult to the average school
>computer technician, pupil or teacher to suggest that they need costly
>professional assistance to obtain and load up OpenOffice on to a Mac
>computer.

 
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peterwn
Guest
Posts: n/a
 
      05-29-2007
Sue Bilstein wrote:

>> impossible wrote:
>>>>> ... what do you mean by that?
>>> Nice "simple example". But what does any of this have to do with
>>> getting office software on school computers?

>> Nothing. I was merely answering Sue's question about intellectual property.

>
> However, I was specifically asking about what you meant in relation to
> software for schools.
> -----
> Er ...


That is OK. It had occurred to me that Microsoft could concede on this
one or offer a better deal, but in return may seek some quid pro quo
which may not necessarily education based. A possibility is a
legislative tweak involving intellectual property which while appearing
trivial, effectively transfers significant wealth out of NZ - not the
Government's wealth, but wealth that belongs to everyone.

Such a deal can be very tempting if it helps solve an immediate problem
and does cost money to be met from Government funds.

This concept is a bit difficult to grasp, but nevertheless is a very
important concept for those interested in general public affairs.

>
>> pass some intellectual property rights from the 'commons' enjoyed
>> by all Kiwis to overseas corporations.

>
>
> ... what do you mean by that?


Sorry, this is an abstract but nevertheless important statement.

Take the patent example. A Kiwi start-up develops a product, gets up
and running and is doing well. An overseas company comes along and
demands crippling royalties on the strength of a dubious patent. Faced
with royalty payments which makes the product not worth producing, or a
legal fight which is morally winnable but financially disastrous, the NZ
company reluctantly stops production. Meanwhile the overseas company
steps in with a similar product which Kiwis have to buy at a much higher
price.

>
> Quid pro quo, Microsoft provides MS Office to schools in return for
> copyright on schoolkids' artworks?
> ----
>

No, I did not mean this, and in any case the school probably does not
have full IP rights in pupils' works capable of being assigned - the
'nemo dat' principle. I was thinking more of potential property rights
which could be extracted out of the 'commons' and effectively vested in
someone, even an overseas corporation, by a mere legislative enactment
or amendment. An extreme example would be air, or a more realistic
example 'carbon emission rights', but would also include intellectual
property such as 'out of copyright' works, or by virtue of widening the
scope of patent laws. I can well imagine a company such as Microsoft
seeking such extremely valuable property rights in return for offering a
fantastic 'knock down' price for software for schools.

Sorry, I did not pick the 'link' between your two comments first time round.

 
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sam
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Posts: n/a
 
      05-29-2007
impossible wrote:

>
> Nice "simple example". But what does any of this have to do with
> getting office software on school computers? It's money -- not
> intellectual property -- that schools are going to end up parting
> with. Either they pay that money to Microsoft for software licenses,
> or they pay it to some service outfit to support the "free"
> alternatives.
>
>

What is this "support" ? LOL
It consists of Datacom distributing the media and managing the licenses
The PC stuff is a volume licence key deal with the media kit supplied free.
From what I can see the Mac media is available for $48.95 plus freight
and GST, so the media beatup seems a bit ambiguous.
http://www.dsv.co.nz/moe/MoE_info.html
 
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