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Surprises inside Microsoft Vista's EULA

The next version of Windows is just around the corner, so the next time we discuss software licensing in my course, the EULA for Vista will be front and center. You can read the Microsoft Vista EULA yourself by going to the official Find License Terms for Software Licensed from Microsoft page and searching for Vista. I know many of you have never bothered to read the EULA - who really wants to, after all? - but take a few minutes and get yourself a copy and read it. I'll wait.

Back? It's bad, ain't it? Real bad. I mean, previous EULAs weren't anything great - either as reading material or in terms of rights granted to end users - but the Vista EULA is horrendous.

From: The Register.

Microsoft Media Player 11 shreds your rights

Think DRM was bad already? Welcome to Windows Media Player 11, and the rights get chipped away a lot more.

WMP 11 will no longer allow you the privilege of backing up your licenses, they are tied to a single device, and if you lose it, you are really SOL. [...] This is nothing less than a civil rights coup, and most people are dumb enough to let it happen.

But it gets worse. If you rip your own CDs, WMP 11 will take your rights away too.

If the file is a song you ripped from a CD with the Copy protect music option turned on [...] You will be prompted to connect to a Microsoft Web page that explains how to restore your rights a limited number of times.

This says to me it will keep track of your ripping externally, and remove your rights whether or not you ask it to.

Then when you go down on the page a bit, it goes on to show that it guts Tivo capabilities. After three days, it kills your recordings for you, how thoughtful of them. Going away for a week? Tough, your rights are inconvenient to their profits, so they have to go.

What WMP 11 represents is one of the biggest thefts of your rights that I can think of. MS planned this, pushed the various pieces slowly, and this is the first big hammer to drop.

From: The Inquirer