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Floating Licenses and other cyber-rights

  Jamie wrote about "Microsoft Licensing Plan".
  Floating licenses have been standard on unix for a long time and very
  secure.  I've had two programs, framemaker and matlab which use FLEXLM
  quite successfully. Mathworks tried to license matlab for linux as it
  did its windows/mac version - per node, faced strong opposition from
  its customers, and caved.
  It is predictable that as pcs become more networked, thus enabling
  floating license systems to work on group networks and allowing
  a group of 10 to share 3 copies of powerpoint, microsoft cancels
  its floating license model! Perhaps some IS managers find the
  "per seat" budgeting process of lotus notes simpler, or it may
  just be more profitable to charge for unused software sitting
  on every disk in a company.
  along with paul richardson's idea:
  >all of the [computer] components were line-itemized
  >so that people could see what costs what.
  we need a new bill of information rights:
  "Software use accounting"
     A software license is "to run on one machine at at time."
     We must have the ability to account for how many copies of software are 
     actually being used by an organization and license that use.
  the "license survives the media law"
     When you buy a license to s/w and the medium changes, you often have
     to BUY IT again.  This didnt happen in the change from 5.25 to 3.5
     floppies, but it did happen in the change from vinylLP to CD.  It may
     happen that all your movies licenses purchased on VHS media are not
     cheaply upgradable to DVD.  It should be: "Send in your old VHS movie
     and $5 S&H for the equivalent DVD."  but it won't be.
  The "Email forwarding" law
     The phone companies and the postoffice provide forwarding services for
     a prescribed time. My wife quit GENIE, and they would not forward, nor
     would they bounce her email, so it was a black hole.  There should be
     a law protecting people's communications from being held hostage as
     they change providers and addresses.
  The "Public Lending Library" law
     Software can be released on a media like CDROM which must be present
     for the running. While this requirement has been rejected by the mass
     market, it is necessary for library lending. (Instead of selling
     library enabled versions, s/w companies threaten libraries as sources
     of piracy.)
  Unfortunately, facing its own demise from rapid electronic
  dissemination, the current media keeps focusing on internet
  pornography (free advertising which increases its market:), under the
  rubric of "protecting children" from information they can get at any
  7-11. They continue to ignore the major ripoff of real people and real
  businesses through the forced purchase and forced upgrades of
  Professor Jordan B. Pollack   DEMO Laboratory, Volen Center for Complex Systems
  Computer Science Dept, MS018  Phone (617) 736-2713/Lab x3366/Fax x2741
  Brandeis University           website: http://www.demo.cs.brandeis.edu
  Waltham, MA 02254             email: pollack@cs.brandeis.edu