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RE: Refund for Bundled Win95

  	>>If you're willing to hand Microsoft approximately $100 for 
  	      nothing more than forcing manufacturers to bundle Windows,
        that's your choice.
  No one is forced to bundle Microsoft products with their hardware. It is
  slanderous to say otherwise.
  David E. Y. Sarna       davids@objectsoftcorp.com
  ObjectSoft Corp. (NASDAQ:OSFT)    http://www.objectsoftcorp.com
  433 Hackensack Ave., Hackensack, NJ 07601
  Tel.: (201) 343-9100    Fax: (201) 343-0056
  > -----Original Message-----
  > From:	Donna. [SMTP:donna.s@niestu.com]
  > Sent:	Sunday, November 09, 1997 5:56 PM
  > To:	Multiple recipients of list
  > Subject:	Refund for Bundled Win95
  > Chip Richards <chipr@niestu.com> wrote to this list regarding the
  > refund
  > for a pre-bundled Win95.  Well, I'm actually the one who handled the
  > purchase and subsequent refund.  Chip wrote about it here cuz the
  > issue
  > came up where he's already subscribed, and we tend to split up mailing
  > lists to give us both more ground cover.  Since replies are rolling in
  > in
  > great numbers, however, I figured life would be easier on us all if I
  > just
  > subscribed for myself to deal with questions, objections, etc. 
  > When I first went to the newsgroups to see if anybody had done this
  > before, I got similar responses to what I'm getting now.  So, here's
  > my
  > canned replies to the objections:
  > 1. Build yer own!
  >    A. Sorry, but in all the years I've been building computers from 
  >       components (and sometimes even from scratch!), I've yet to 
  >       be able to build a notebook.  We =do= normally build our own.
  >       Built our own new server machine this weekend, in fact.  But
  >       last spring, the need was for a notebook.
  >       Even had it been a desktop model, however, "build yer own" 
  >       simply isn't an option for everyone. Not everybody's the avid 
  >       hardware hacks my partner and I are.  If Linux is to be about
  >       freedom, about options, about making our own computing choices, 
  >       then we mustn't get up on our high horses and say that everybody
  >       who can't build their own boxes must then be tied to only one
  > OS.  
  > 2. Patronize a pro-Linux hardware vendor.
  >    A. We tried.  Honest.  Unfortunately, the closest we found to 
  >       the system we wanted cost $1,000 more than what we paid, AND
  >       we would have bought mail order for a system we needed 
  >       yesterday. Shipping's usually more than sales tax, folks.  
  >       Besides, what about people who don't want Linux, either? 
  >       There be more options than Windows and Linux for 80xxx 
  >       architecture: QNX, OS/2, Plan9, Inferno, Solaris, BSDs ...
  >       to name but a =few=.  If we were talking about other
  >       architectures, this argument might hold weight, but there 
  >       are more options for 80xxx boxes than any other game around.
  >       That we let anybody say there's only one, or only two, 
  >       options is to shovel the truth under the rug, and perpetuate 
  >       consumer ignorance.
  > 3. Just delete Win95, install Linux, and forget about it.  That's 
  >    what I did.
  >    A. If you're willing to hand Microsoft approximately $100 for 
  >       nothing more than forcing manufacturers to bundle Windows, 
  >       that's your choice.  I'm not so willing.  I tried to buy 
  >       the notebook without Windows in the first place.  As most 
  >       Linux users already realize, that ain't gonna happen.
  >       Well, the truth is that it ain't gonna happen so long as 
  >       we who don't use Microsoft products continue to allow 
  >       computer manufacturers force Microsoft products on us 
  >       AND THEN AGREE TO PAY THEM FOR IT.  They ain't gonna stop
  >       forcing Microsoft down our throats as long as we keep 
  >       paying them to do so.
  > 4. Just keep it and you can play cool games with it.
  >    A. Thanks for the thought, but there are already more than enough 
  >       cool games for me in Linux.  What doesn't exist but I want 
  >       anyway, I write myself.  If any flavor of bundled Windows is
  >       more than a doorstop for you, great, enjoy it.  With my 
  >       blessings, even -- I don't give a rat's behind what other 
  >       people use on their own computers, and in fact will defend 
  >       your right to choose your own software as much as I defend 
  >       my own. I, on the other paw, have no use for Windows, derive 
  >       no benefit from having Windows on my system, and in fact 
  >       suffer from having Windows on my system cuz it's so darned 
  >       big; I shouldn't have to pay for it, too.
  > 5. How do you expect to (now: how did you) get a manufacturer to 
  >    give a refund?
  >    A. From these two relevant pieces from the Win95 End User License
  >       Agreement (EULA).  The first identifies the parties to the EULA,
  >       while the second says what to do if a user doesn't agree with 
  >       Microsoft's licensing terms.
  >    This End-User License Agreement ("EULA") is a legal agreement
  > between
  >    you (either an individual or a single entity) and the manufacturer
  > ("PC
  >    Manufacturer") of the computer system ("COMPUTER") with which you
  >    acquired the Microsoft software product(s) identified above
  >    PRODUCT" or "SOFTWARE").
  > [...]
  >    If you do not agree to the terms of this EULA, PC Manufacturer and
  >    Microsoft are unwilling to license the SOFTWARE PRODUCT to you. In
  > such
  >    event, you may not use or copy the SOFTWARE PRODUCT, and you should
  >    promptly contact PC Manufacturer for instructions on return of the
  >    unused product(s) for a refund. 
  > 6. Wasn't this more trouble than it was worth?
  >    Principles always come with a cost.  If non-Windows users had
  > spoken 
  >    up more loudly when all this began (and I include myself in this, 
  >    despite not having touched Microsoft products since about 1987 or
  >    thereabouts, using instead QNX and later Linux on my succession of 
  >    80xxx boxes), all of us wouldn't be in this mess now.  And what a 
  >    mess it is!  After having built my own systems for so many years 
  >    and computed merrily along with Intel architecture yet blithely 
  >    unaware that Microsoft even existed except as an option for users 
  >    who didn't want to take control of their own appliances, I was 
  >    =shocked= to enter the world of pre-bundling and discover the 
  >    blaise' attitude of people who were paying for software they had no
  >    use for.  I honestly didn't realize y'all existed until 1997.  
  >    I feel better for having stood up for myself.  I feel better for 
  >    knowing that I've managed to educate at least one Customer Support 
  >    manager at one computer manufacturer that yes, Virginia, the 
  >    computer is NOT just a doorstop if it doesn't have Windows.  I feel
  >    better for knowing that I, at least, did not bend over backwards 
  >    and invite Microsoft to, well, do what happens when people bend
  > over 
  >    backwards.  
  >    Maybe, for you, these results aren't worth the approximately $100 
  >    that pre-bundled Windows cost.  That's your choice.  It wasn't
  > mine.
  > You may notice that the consistent thread running through all these
  > objections and my responses is: choice.  Hardware and software are two
  > separate entities, no matter how closely connected they may be, and a
  > choice on one does not =necessarily= determine the choice for the
  > other.
  > Every one of us should be able to buy the hardware AND the software we
  > want, without having to pay for components we've no use for.
  > IMO, USian consumers have become bamfoozled by corporate rhetoric
  > which
  > says that we must pay more in order to receive less, cuz "more
  > consumers" 
  > want the more.  How dumb is that, I wonder?  We pay more to eat food
  > which
  > has not had chemicals and/or hormones added, to wear suits that don't
  > come
  > with a second pair of pants, to remove pre-installed yet unsafe
  > airbags
  > from cars. No doubt you've got examples from your own life.  They keep
  > doing it because we, the consumer, not only let them get away with it
  > but
  > ASK them to continue doing it by paying them to do so.  Well, I'm a
  > consumer who doesn't subserviently open up my bank account to
  > strangers
  > for no good reason any more. They may have forced me to buy the system
  > pre-installed with Win95, but so long as there's no law in this land
  > which
  > says I can't get my money back -- so long as there's a legal document
  > which tells me TO get my money back if I don't agree with Microsoft's
  > license -- I'm going to get my money back. 
  > Donna.
  > Cybrarian, NiEstu
  > donna.s@niestu.com