Software piracy, the BSA, and where’s the opensource love?

Piracy is a big deal in Malaysia. Apparently, piracy is causing greater losses for the software industry, and is a billion ringgit problem. The piracy rate is 59%, which is below the regional average of 61%. Wow!

The Business Software Alliance (BSA) hates piracy. They’ve even setup an informative site, titled B4USurf. Its great to see that they run Apache, on CentOS, and are powered by PHP and CMS Made Simple. They however, don’t at any point in time mention opensource in all their information. Of course I understand why – the BSA themselves shouldn’t like opensource.

However, the Domestic Trade and Consumer Affairs Ministry plans to increase public awareness to buying only original software. They’ll also touch on the downside of pirated products. Will they then not talk about opensource software?

Its all fine and dandy to create an open source conference for advocacy purposes, but if we’re still doing advocacy after so many years, something must be amiss. Maybe enlisting help from other ministries, tacking on information campaigns organised by the Domestic Trade and Consumer Affairs Ministry might make sense, no?

Seeing ads that tell you to buy original software, just falls on deaf ears. Show them alternatives. Show them that there is no need to buy original software, after all, open source software is free (as in bebas, not necessarily percuma).


  1. suanie says:

    fuwah colin uses malay words

    • byte says:

      Hopefully they’re the correct Bahasa Malaysia words ;-) I Googled to find it, and never did find it!

  2. It’s the same situation here in the Philippines. Software piracy is higher than the regional average and poverty level is hitting all time high but our government insists on using proprietary software.

    We have a FOSS bill in our legislature which has practically no chance of becoming a law because the author belongs to the minority party.