back to article Russian piracy crackdown targets the opposition

A software piracy crackdown in Russia has prompted accusations of of skulduggery after elements of the political opposition became the subject of enforcement actions. Independent news media and political parties have been targeted for attacks according to government critics, the Washington Post reports. For example, the …

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  1. Anonymous Coward
    Go

    see how YOU like it

    I know for a fact that most Russian offices use pirated software. If you are paying your employees £250 a month, you are not going to spend a yearly salary of an employee on Quark express and Adobe CS3, are you? Or what about font packs that cost as much as the salary of an editorial team in a regional newspaper?

    The message from the government is quite clear, and ironic “you want western style democracy? You got it, see how YOU like it” ;-)

  2. J
    Pirate

    Hardly...

    Hardly an exclusively Russian phenomenon, I'd say. It might not be as extensive and in your face, but people in the Western "democracies" sure do this of thing whenever they think they can get away with it. Tax audits, investigations, et al. are not always random and uninterested... To my friends, everything. To my enemies, the law. (being charitable)

  3. Anonymous Coward
    Pirate

    heh...

    ""Our law enforcement finally realized that computers are very important tools for their opponents, and they have decided to take away these tools by doing something close to the West's agenda," said Vladimir Pribylovsky, head of the Panorama research institute in Moscow, over the din of Russian police officers carrying computer equipment from his office."

  4. Solomon Grundy
    Alert

    Font Packs

    "font packs that cost as much as the salary of an editorial team in a regional newspaper"??

    Are you kidding? I'd use pirated fonts too.

  5. Henry Wertz

    Looks like it's time for some open source

    Looks like it's time for some open source software. Slap on Ubuntu or the like, use exclusively free fonts, and the gov't can "crack down" all they want, there's nothing for them to complain about.

  6. Anton Ivanov
    Flame

    Trully deserved

    Well... All I can say is that it is truly deserved. The west has shovelled god knows how many hundreds of millions into Eastern European and Russian NGOs in the last 20 years. At least some of that could have gone towards making them legal as per the western standards instead of lining personal pockets of criminals and fraudsters wearing "dissident" masks.

    You cannot claim a moral high ground while being up to your neck in BS. This is just one example of it.

    Unfortunately, this seems to be a lesson which the Western politicians find particularly hard to understand at the moment.

  7. David Shaw

    Ubuntu can be installed in Russian

    I'm about to make an installation in по-русски over a legal but virussed/trojanned to death WinXP.

    <http://mirror.yandex.ru/ubuntu-releases/gutsy/> have the torrent files , which might be the most convenient way to install in Russia? Гип-гип-ура !!!

  8. Graham Wood
    Stop

    @Henry Wertz

    The whole point of this is that the government would still raid you, and take the machines away. 6 months later you may get them back as "clean", but in the meantime you can't say negative things about them.

    Being completely/obviously legal is only a defence if the guilt is the issue in question.

  9. Keith T
    Flame

    Politics

    "Well... All I can say is that it is truly deserved. The west has shovelled god knows how many hundreds of millions into Eastern European and Russian NGOs in the last 20 years. At least some of that could have gone towards making them legal as per the western standards instead of lining personal pockets of criminals and fraudsters wearing "dissident" masks."

    Unfortunately the "criminals and fraudsters" are generally the ones in power.

    The use of the gun as a way of dealing with business rivals has ended up with a really wealthy powerbase supported by Putin. In that respect there is far less democracy now than there was under the Communists.

    Money says it all and money can be used to shut down any dissenting voice - yes, the power used to be in The Party but now it looks more like a large version of Chicago in the 20's. To gain power you grab it - but only with the consent of those at the top. But to control it you also need to shut down those who raise thier voices.

    It's far closer to Chinese 'freedom' than even the 'Merkin version.

    But it's all to do with control gas, oil and heavy industry, sod all to do with raising the people out of the frozen mud.

    If this is 'free enterprise' you can shove it.

  10. Peter Lawrence
    Coat

    In Soviet Russia...

    In Soviet Russia, software pirate YOU!

    I'm on my way out....

  11. Anonymous Coward
    Flame

    @Peter Lawrence

    Where did this "In Soviet Russia" crap came from?

    I have seen it used many times, and would like to know the origin

  12. Captain DaFt
    Go

    @ Anonymous Coward

    "Where did this "In Soviet Russia" crap came from?

    I have seen it used many times, and would like to know the origin"

    Here ya go; http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Yakov_Smirnoff

    In Soviet Russia, Google searches You!

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