[clug] RE: MakeTheMove Website Demo

Mike Carden mike.carden at gmail.com
Thu Sep 7 11:22:48 GMT 2006

> Is this for real? As in owner copyright-wise?

No. Owner Real Life[tm] wise.

> Surely governments and large
> corporations wouldn't accept this.

Because they're smart enough to see the danger? Surely you jest.

> If it's true then it is something that we
> should be putting out there as hard as we can.

Yes and yes. It works like this.

You use a proprietary application to create some data, and the
application stores that data in a format known only to the proprietor.
In order to access that data, you must pay the proprietor for the use
of their software to gain access to your data. No payment to the
proprietor, no access to your data. The proprietor has become a
co-owner of your data.

Let's move down from the abstract. If you use MS Excel to make a
spreadsheet, you need to buy a copy of MS Excel to use that
spreadsheet. If you don't buy Excel, you may not access 'your'
spreadsheet. MS may access it freely. MS co-owns your data.

On the other hand, if the proprietary software vendor decided to adopt
open formats, that vendor might compete in the market on the strength
of their software. So to pluck a random example, if Microsoft truly
believed that they could create the best Office software, they might
decide to 100% support ISO26300 ODF and compete on the strength of
their product. On the other hand, if they believed that their product
was second rate or worse, they may attempt to continue their old
'lock-in' method of keeping customers by insisting on proprietary data

Right now, customer education is very, very important.

The copyright issue is a separate and interesting one. If you create a
document using an MS Office product and you embed a font in that
document, are you permitted to represent that font without using MS
Office? That is, if you send the document to me and I don't own a
license for MS Office (and the fonts it employs), am I legally
permitted to perform that font without a license?


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