Scott & Scott, LLP Responds to BSA's 2010 Global Software Piracy Study

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Software audit defense law firm, Scott & Scott, LLP, responds to May 12 Business Software Alliance news release announcing the results of the 2010 BSA Global Software Piracy Study.

Scott & Scott, LLP

Threatening end users with litigation in software audit cases does nothing to ease licensing complexities or reduce the global software piracy rate..

Scott & Scott, LLP, an intellectual property and technology law firm with a software audit defense practice, responds to five points in a May 12 Business Software Alliance news release announcing the results of the 2010 BSA Global Software Piracy Study.

BSA: Software piracy is escalating in value despite survey evidence that most people prefer licensed software.

Scott & Scott: Software licenses are unique, lengthy and complex. Most businesses do not have the resources – both financial and human – to interpret software license agreements and establish costly compliance initiatives required by the software industry.

BSA: The software industry is being robbed blind by people who don’t know the software they are using is illegal.

Scott & Scott: The financial facts of some of the leading BSA members fail to support the “robbed blind” argument. Microsoft has a market cap of $203.7 Billion with $62.48 Billion in cash. Adobe paid its CEO $12,228,214 while Symantec paid its CEO $9,022,349 in total compensation in 2010.

Robert J. Scott, Managing Partner, of Scott & Scott, LLP, says: “If the BSA and its members would do more to simplify the current complexity of their licenses, it would go a long way to solving consumer confusion.”

BSA: Software piracy is an urgent problem for the whole economy.

Scott & Scott: In our opinion, the industry should make it easier for customers to manage their software, reduce the cost of software, and eliminate payment of reward money to disgruntled employees, many of whom are IT employees who are suspect in the software installation they report.

BSA: The findings show that U.S. is at a competitive disadvantage to the emerging economies that are paying less for software.

Scott & Scott: The answer is to increase the value that U.S. businesses derive from business software usage. Complicated licensing schemes and adversarial audits increase costs and damage U.S. company competitiveness.

BSA: The software industry is doing everything it can to promote legal use.

Scott & Scott: The study reveals that complexity of licensing rules is the primary cause for unlicensed software. “Threatening end users with litigation in software audit cases does nothing to ease licensing complexities or reduce the global software piracy rate. In our opinion, it is not the right way to lead by example,” said Scott.

About Scott & Scott, LLP:

Scott & Scott, LLP (http://www.scottandscottllp.com and http://www.bsadefense.com) is a boutique intellectual property and technology law firm providing software audit defense and software compliance solutions, all protected by attorney-client and work-product privileges.

Scott began focusing on representing companies audited by the BSA after the BSA audited one of his companies. “I still remember the sinking feeling I had when I received the audit letter from the BSA in Washington.” said Scott. We vigorously defended our position and successfully settled the matter out of court. Since then, Scott & Scott’s attorneys have devoted their time and energy to educate colleagues and work with small to mid-size businesses to resolve their disputes with the BSA. The firm has defended more than 205 companies throughout the U.S. and Canada against allegations of software piracy by the BSA.

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Anita Scott
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