[LINK] Microsoft charity crackdown spurs boycott
kim at holburn.net
Wed May 27 00:27:55 EST 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
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