Microsoft and Russia

The Russians are slapping Microsoft around again -- Russia hits out at Microsoft licensing. Ouch.

But go down to the bottom of the article and you'll see some really good news:

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The problem of software piracy in Russia has been highlighted in recent weeks by the case of a teacher accused of using unlicensed copies of Microsoft Windows and Office software on 12 classroom PCs.

The case attracted the attention of current Russian President Vladimir Putin and former leader Mikhail Gorbachev, who called for the charges to be dropped. This week, the Russian courts dismissed the prosecution calls for the teacher to be fined and rejected the case as "trivial."
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Cool. It's always a good thing when teachers don't have to do time in "Siberian prison camps" -- as earlier articles were suggesting -- for using outdated copies of Windows to teach kids. Previous comments here and here. I don't know how much of this story was blown out of proportion, of course, but when guys with global names like Gorbachev and Putin chime in, well, what can I say, I noticed.

I can't wait to visit our growing community in Russia, by the way. This is yet another emerging tech market that could really use a helping hand with open source and OpenSolaris. And Russia will be one of the country portals on opensolaris.org, which is very exciting. (More on the portals project very soon.)
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