Is using paid abandonware piracy?

Discussion in 'PowerPC Macs' started by SourceSunTom, Jul 26, 2017.

  1. SourceSunTom macrumors regular

    SourceSunTom

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    #1
    I'm creating this thread because we have conflicts going on the LeopadRebirth about abandonware and piracy, Completely out of the LeopardRebirth theme subject,

    btw! I down't want to be into this conflict, I created this for the above reason.
     
  2. Daniël Oosterhuis macrumors 6502a

    Daniël Oosterhuis

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    #2
    Yes it is. Simply put, as long as software has active copyrights on it, it is illegal to obtain it via means not allowed by the copyright owner. If said copyright owner makes it available for free, that's fine. But the problem is that people seem to think that once the software is unsupported and no longer sold, it's a free for all or in a "grey area". It's illegal by law, it's simply not affecting a corporation's income flow and they would most likely not waste resources to take people who illegally obtained the software after discontinuation to court. That doesn't make it legal. People really, really need to just quit with this fallacy of abandonware not being piracy. It is. That no one really cares doesn't change the law. Oh, and opinions definitely DON'T change the law either. Because your opinion means nothing in a court case, which is where it counts.
     
  3. LightBulbFun macrumors 6502a

    LightBulbFun

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    #3
    Yes it is,

    much like masturbation its something everyone does but no one likes to talk about
     
  4. MacCubed macrumors 68000

    MacCubed

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    #4
    I'm not trying to be rude, but technically the abandonware discussion in the other thread was on topic. The PPCstore is a part of the theme, and the discussion that was taking place still pertained to that topic. This being said here is my view...

    If the software is copyrighted, do not distribute it in any case to anyone, it does not matter the age of the software. Sure abandonware is no longer updated, but if that copyright is still there, it is illegal and you can be subject to legal action. Now, if you email the developer and inquire if they are ok with their software being distributed as it is no longer updated and you receive written consent, then it is ok.

    We are just trying to help out, and legal rules are not a matter of your opinion, but a matter of the law's opinion. You can get into serious trouble including huge fines and even jail time here in the U.S, and if you are not a legal adult, that falls on your parents and can destroy their lives.

    Anyhow I hope this helps, and your efforts to keep PPCs going is greatly appreciated.
     
  5. bunnspecial macrumors 603

    bunnspecial

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    #5
    The only legal standing you MIGHT have to claim this on abandonware is under the Orphan Works provision.

    There very, very specific procedures under the US Copyright Act to claim something as an "orphan work" as well as a lot of documentation required that you have attempted to contact the creator/copyright holder and can't track them down.

    You might have some success with some very early "one man operation" software companies where the guy/gal who created it died and their heirs don't have any interest or they don't have any heirs. Otherwise, most any software you find today has a pretty clear lineage as to who owns it if not the original creator.

    And yes, they still legally retain control over that. Sometimes they give it away, as Apple did with System 7.5 and earlier plus a lot of other bundled software. Sometimes it even gets released into public domain.

    Otherwise, there's no ambiguity over it-someone owns the copyright. If you have express written permission to reproduce/distribute it then you can do it, but otherwise you don't have a legal leg to stand on.

    As a real world example, I use a textbook to teach one of my classes that was written in the 1980s. I know the author personally. When I wanted to use the book for my class, I called him and talked to him about it. I then sent a formal letter requesting its use under specific circumstances, and he responded with a formal letter outlining the specific conditions under which I could reproduce and distribute the textbook. That letter is printed in the front of every copy(mostly electronic) that I distribute to avoid any questions.
     
  6. amagichnich macrumors regular

    amagichnich

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    #6
    I am German and know nearly nothing about U.S. law, but in German jurisdiction common sense is a big factor.
    With that in mind we have to face the fact that we are talking about unsupported SOFTWARE on unsupported HARDWARE. That doesn't make abandonware legal, in no country's jurisdiction I am aware of. But "Ubi non accusator, ibi non iudex" - There is no judge where there is no prosecutor. Still, not legal by any means.
    But common sense implies that one can use officially abandoned software on officially abandoned hardware without worrying.

    I think the question is WHY someone uses abandonware and WHY one would pay for it. But that is a quest everyone has to answer only to himself. I use it because it makes my life on older computers easier (and I have quite a lot, not only apple ones) but I would never pay for it. instead of paying I prefer donations with a personal message of appreciation to the developer.

    Additionally a question everyone should answer to himself too: How many illegal copies of Mac OS are you using? Apple released its OSs until System 6 (if I recall that correct). If someone asked where to get a copy of Leopard or Tiger we tell him to go to Macintoshgarden or equivalent but that's not legal!
    Applying a moral only in some cases is false moral.

    Sorry if my english isn't that good and sometimes leads to misunderstanding. I do not intend to offend anyone, it's just that English isn't my native language and therefore I might make some mistakes and might be using some words in the wrong way (stupid for example). I speak and write English to the extend of my knowledge and sometimes just don't know it better.

    I want no war, just peace with all my fellow PPC lovers :)
    --- Post Merged, Jul 26, 2017 ---
    Okay I was wrong,it's system 7.5 :D thanks bunnspecial ;)
     
  7. bunnspecial macrumors 603

    bunnspecial

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    #7
    Speaking for myself-I own legal copies of every "pay for" release from OS 7.6-9.2.1(last retail release-9.2.2 was a free update) and 10.0-10.13.

    I also have legal copies of most major versions from System 7.5 and earlier, although those are available for free download from Apple.
     
  8. z970mp macrumors 6502

    z970mp

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    #8
     
  9. jbarley macrumors 68030

    jbarley

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    #9
    According to this thread title...
    "Is using paid abandonware piracy?"
    One could assume that you are asking if using abandonware that you paid for piracy.
    Under those terms no it would be perfectly legal, after all that's why you paid for it.:D
     
  10. redheeler macrumors 603

    redheeler

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    #10
    Technically the answer is yes, even when you host free software where the license doesn't allow redistribution and you haven't obtained permission from the copyright owner. It is rare you'd get anything more than a request to take it down, however, assuming you comply with said request.
    There's nothing like having the genuine box and labeled install disk for the full experience. This is the reason I get legitimate copies of abandonware occasionally (such as Mac OS X Public Beta). :D
     
  11. Stefan johansson macrumors 65816

    Stefan johansson

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    #11
    Well,I'm also using abandonware. Of course,many years ago I did pay Microsoft for a windows XP license,and now I just wonder how legal it is for me to install the abandoned and unsupported software on a computer?
    I already had it installed as second OS on a MacBook Pro,but this discussion makes me wonder about the legal aspects. It's not that I'm scared that Bill Gates will come visit me with a 12-bore shotgun or a bazillion of lawyers,but I'm curious. Is it legal for me to install outdated and unsupported software I paid for when it was supported on a computer that not even existed back then?
     
  12. z970mp macrumors 6502

    z970mp

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    #12
    It's absolutely legal because you paid money for a copy of Windows XP. You have every right to do as you so please with your copy.

    But I know that feeling. You hang around here long enough, and it really starts to get to you.

    Why, just a few hours ago, I was even questioning the legality of myself owning a Power Mac G5 and simply using OS X, especially since I acquired the machine used with a tag of $0.

    How absurd.

    We've got every right to use our legitimately owned hardware / software as we please, especially when the producers of said companies couldn't give less of a crap about them.

    Don't worry about it.
     
  13. Stefan johansson macrumors 65816

    Stefan johansson

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    #13
    Thanks for the answer,not that I worried about it (has been using lots of pirateware back in the days when software was distributed and stored on easy-to-copy tape cassettes) I was merely curious.
     
  14. Daniël Oosterhuis, Jul 27, 2017
    Last edited: Jul 27, 2017

    Daniël Oosterhuis macrumors 6502a

    Daniël Oosterhuis

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    #14
    If that license wasn't used with another computer while still installed on the original computer in the case of a 1 PC license, or the license was for multiple computers and the MBP was still within the allowed number of computers you could install it on, then there's no problem. As for Bill Gates and shotguns, well, I would be a little careful if I were you ;)

     
  15. Stefan johansson macrumors 65816

    Stefan johansson

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    #15
    The software was Windows XP,license was bought in 1999 or so,for an Alienware computer. That particular software was discontinued and unsupported years before I bought the Mac. Used the CD to install it under bootcamp. I'm not so sure Microsoft or Bill Gates care too much about totally outdated software anyway.
    Only reason to install it was that I got a truckload of old XP games that I wanted to use.
     
  16. Daniël Oosterhuis macrumors 6502a

    Daniël Oosterhuis

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    #16
    If you bought a retail license + CD of Windows XP to install on the computer and it wasn't an OEM license that came with the computer, and the Alienware computer in question is no longer running XP with that license, you're totally in the clear. A Windows license for one computer can be transferred by removing it from the computer it is on, to then move it to a different computer.
     
  17. Stefan johansson macrumors 65816

    Stefan johansson

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    #17
    Ok,then its No problem,the Alienware went to the great recycling yard long before I installed the software on my Mac,after 12 years with that old laptop,it finally got outdated and replaced.
     
  18. weckart macrumors 68040

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    #18
    Ditto. I own full boxed retail copies of every major revision from 1.0 to recent of DOS, O/2, Windows and from 6.0 to 10.7 of MacOS/OS X plus several upgrades inbetween. It is the same kind of nice you got with records and missing from downloads or streaming.
    If I pirate something, it is because I am too lazy/busy to hunt a disc out.
     
  19. bunnspecial macrumors 603

    bunnspecial

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    #19
    Don't you have the Mac OS Anthologies? I seem to remember that someone here has them.

    I also once briefly owned OS X Server 1.2, but I know where that one is now :)
     
  20. Stefan johansson macrumors 65816

    Stefan johansson

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    #20
    Well,some people say that it was better when computer software was delivered on CDs,floppy disk or even tape cassettes,but come on,those are mostly useful for retro gaming. I don't even own a disk with macOS,as I downloaded my updates directly.
     
  21. weckart macrumors 68040

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    #21
    I do. You owned 1.0 actually.;)

    I found 1.2 from a German seller who was clearing out. Threw in a boxed OSX 10.0, Tiger and Leopard plus a few other goodies. Madman. Still looking for 1.2v3.
     
  22. bunnspecial macrumors 603

    bunnspecial

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    #22
    On a related note, how many of you all have Tiger on CDs?

    I've picked a few copies over the years, including black disks and generic white CD-Rs. I suspect that the CD-Rs may have been made on demand in Apple stores, but don't have anything to back that up.

    I also have a retail boxed copy of Tiger Server on CD. It came in the box with my X-serve G5, which shipped with a CD-RW and not a Superdrive(I stuck a PowerBook superdrive in it).
     
  23. AmazingHenry macrumors 65816

    AmazingHenry

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    #23
    Nice going everyone, we got the LeoRebirth thread locked. :(
     
  24. Daniël Oosterhuis macrumors 6502a

    Daniël Oosterhuis

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    #24
    Only temporarily while moderators clean it up according to MR rules. Plus, Tom is taking a break anyways, so it's not a disaster.
     
  25. AmazingHenry macrumors 65816

    AmazingHenry

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    #25
    Ah, just saw the post by Weasleboy on the thread. Thanks.
     

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