[xplorer˛] — One less cracker
home » blog » 1 July 2007

"Property is theft!" — Some anarcho-communist

An australian hacker alias DrinkorDie was sentenced to a long spell in jail for cracking software and distributing them for free in warez networks. Whatever happened to public crucifixion as a deterrent for other no-gooders? String them high!

The crime was old (last century) and his network is probably defunct and irrelevant, and the way the australian goverment has submitted to USA gang-ho extradition request is humiliating, but nevertheless the sentencing warmed the cockles of my heart. We need such high profile convictions to set an example and give the rest of the warez community leaders some sleepless nights.

Software piracy is a very soft spot of mine. If every person that has downloaded xplorer˛ and uses it on a regular basis had paid the licence fee, I would probably be on Cayman islands pondering about the meaning of life in a private beach resort, instead of sweating with a day job. Ok, there are worse fates in life as paris hilton can attest. Say hello to Paris, DrinkorDie!

Alledgedly, said convict was doing it for sport and not for profit. That is all romantic history now. Warez networks are now big business, charging people membership fees for the priviledge of downloading cracks for almost every type of software. Naive people think that they can get cracks for free through P2P and torrent sites, but that's how they end up in zombie computer networks and with their credit card details stolen by keyloggers. These "free" keygens are packed with trojans and viruses.

Coming from greece, I know there is this mentality that somehow electronic theft not as bad as real theft. It's ok to help yourself to a "backup" of your friend's music collection, since nobody's hurt. It isn't like you steal a loaf of bread, right? Wrong! For example it is this very kind of thing that stands between myself and the latest lamborghini :) (and the missus wants the new alfa romeo too, poor thing).

Once we agree that people have an inalienable right to personal property, including intellectual property rights, there is absolutely no defence for file sharing. If you happened to pass by chez bill gates and the door was ajar and you could see a $5 bill lying on the floor, would it be ok to go and pick it up, "because he has a lot of money and wouldn't miss it"? Is it ok to be a peeping tom "because you don't hurt anybody"?

I understand that people (everybody, myself including) are selfish. The human nature is mischievous. There is a tempting gratification for getting something for nothing. And since nobody believes in heaven and hell anymore, a modicum of cheating is no big deal. I also understand that in some places of the world the cost of a xplorer˛ licence is more than the weekly wages. That is the reason why I offer special discounts for people in less developed countries.

I want to thank the users that were generous enough to purchase a licence for xplorer˛, even though they could have just grabbed a cracked one. May the force be with you. As for crackers, be warned that paris is out of jail already and your stay in the slammer won't be as rewarding from now on :)

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