Wednesday, April 12, 2006

Microsoft writes loophole into state spyware law

“Now we are talking about Microsoft having the freedom to check your computer for any sort of illegal or fraudulent activity you might be participating in. Without your knowledge or consent. It is giving up your rights to privacy.” [says] State Rep. Mike Reynolds, R-Oklahoma City, about House Bill 2083. The bill gives software or online access companies freedom, without liability, to erase spyware and pirated software from users’ computers, in addition to monitoring for fraudulent or illegal activities. |Ok. Gazette|

Basicaly, your End User License Agreement (EULA) will determine what rights your trusted computing vendors have over your system.

The EULA is that huge block of legal boiler-plate that you click that you've read when you haven't really. I don't usually even bother to read them. They strike me as the worst types of contracts of adhesion where there's a total disparity of bargaining power and their terms are often horrendous...but what else can you do?

Don't even get me started on shrink-wrap licenses...

But this new step by Microsoft raises the stakes by giving the EULA the imprimatur of law. I find this incredibly distasteful and a bad omen.

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