Tuesday 2 October 2012

Who are the software pirates?

I'm pretty sure that if a software manufacturer discovered a large organisation where software piracy is rampant there would soon be a court action and a claim for damages. For example if one in five of the users had an illegal copy of their software running on their desktop PCs the supplier would demand payment and compensation on top.

However several of the USA based suppliers are guilty of that same piracy when it comes to the differential between the USA price (USD) and the UK price (GBP) charged to customers. Take for example the latest release of the Adobe Acrobat product version XI. Its USA advertised price is $299, yet the UK price is the equivalent of $375 after the effects of sales tax (VAT) and exchange differences are taken into account.  It makes the same product bought in the UK (by download) 25% more expensive. There is no justification for this corporate greed by Adobe, it is in effect piracy by the suppliers.

I don't break the law by using pirated copies of Adobe software. I simply buy an alternative called Nitro PDF. It is just as good as Adobe Acrobat, yet it is one third of the price and they don't play games with the price in different currencies. Hence Adobe loses out. If they'd shown some integrity I might have done business with them. It could be worth checking what your own business policy is in regard to USA/UK pricing differential.

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