[LINK] Microsoft charity crackdown spurs boycott

Kim Holburn kim at holburn.net
Wed May 27 00:27:55 AEST 2009


> Aussie charities prep for open source
> By Darren Pauli Sydney | Monday, 25 May, 2009
> Microsoft faces a backlash from thousands of aged care providers and  
> charities that are set to dump its software to avoid some $50  
> million in price hikes.
> The Redmond giant is pressing ahead with new global software  
> licensing agreements, some imposing a whopping 500% price increase,  
> to stamp-out what it initially claimed were illegal uses of its  
> discounted offerings by not-for-profit agencies.See also: Tough  
> talks delay G2009 licence dealAustralian aged care and charity  
> organisations have sworn to dump the vendor if it enforces the  
> policy change and are prepared to tear out established Microsoft  
> infrastructure to implement open source alternatives.

> They argue the price hike will eat into revenue generated by  
> taxpayers and donations for charitable activities like homeless  
> shelters and free healthcare services.

> "Every dollar we are forced to spend on software is a dollar less  
> spent on the charitable services like homeless and crisis care that  
> we deliver," Carleton said, adding that it is a public benevolent  
> organisation according to the tax office.

> "They apply American principals to Australian charities, but there  
> is uniqueness here where we can build in the organisation a part of  
> business like employment services and training, that can compete  
> with the for-profits in order to build revenue streams for parts of  
> the buisiness that we do not get funding for," Hawkey said.
> "A lot of vendors don't get it; They miss the point that what we do  
> is help people, and that requires funding from multiple streams."
> He said not-for-profits previously found it appropriate to used  
> discounted licence schemes like Academic Open and others offered  
> through government programmes like the New South Wales Agreement for  
> Microsoft Software (NAMS) scheme because any money they raise goes  
> to chairtable works.
> The organisation inked a three year enterprise agreement with  
> Microsoft about 12 months ago prior to the introduction of  
> CharityOpen, after it was then excluded from available educational  
> discounts following a similar "tightening" on licence misuse.
> However, Hawkey said the agreement has made management of its 3500  
> licences easier and more effecient: "we were previously using a  
> miriade of licences and ordering off the shelf in non-consistent  
> ways, but now we are 100 percent licenced which is good from a  
> governance perpective".
> One prominent charity group requesting anonymity said it faces  
> hundreds of thousands of dollars in software licence fees because,  
> according to the eligibility guidelines, it will be excluded for  
> owning a non-profitable nursing home for the homeless, which it says  
> could not be viably sold.

> The Microsoft spokesperson said the licence conditions are designed  
> to assist smaller standalone facilities

Kim Holburn
IT Network & Security Consultant
Ph: +39 06 855 4294  M: +39 3494957443
mailto:kim at holburn.net  aim://kimholburn
skype://kholburn - PGP Public Key on request

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