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Product Registration

I've gotta call bullshit on this one:

Clearly offline unlock codes aren't a viable solution at all. Relying on "honesty" is a huge mistake.

I said this two years ago and I still believe it:

Incidentally, Freshly Squeezed Software's approach to piracy … is, basically, to ignore piracy. We always tried, at FSS, to make sure honest people paid up, but nothing more. None of our software even blocked pirated codes - it wasn't worth the effort to maintain such a list. The pirates would simply generate a new code, and we'd add that to the list, and it'd become a vicious cycle that took development time away from actual features - the things that sell software to honest folks.

Product activation is goofy and unnecessary. It puts hurdles in front of honest people. And, to be honest, I'd rather ten or a hundred dishonest people steal my software than upset a single honest person.

The iTunes model relies on this trust in the honest of people, and the coming EMI non-DRMed music even more so. If Apple can sell a bazillion iTunes because people can be trusted not to turn to file-sharing when given a reasonable option to be honest, indie Mac devs can earn money too.

7 Responses to "Product Registration"

  1. I couldn't agree more. Issues might arise when such vendor licences code from a third party.

  2. I couldn't agree more!
    What really upsets me is the way this is going with Bluray for instance. Of course it was cracked, and now the honest people who bought a player will soon have to grab a firmware update in order to be able to keep watching their movies at all. The time and work it takes to put in a new safety measure will increase costs of both movies and playback equipment. And it won't be many days till it is cracked again. And so it will go on. There is no such thing as hack-proof.

  3. I agree with this in premise, but I can also state that during times in which my software serials are listed in hacker lists, my sales drop precipitously. As soon as it's patched, back up go the sales. I want to be a believer, but as a small developer, it really does make a difference to my bottom line.

  4. I got bitten by Dave's production activation. As far as I can figure someone figured out or guessed that I used his product and activated it with my email address.

    Dave simply insinuated that I'm a pirate and return any emails help.

  5. I'm not a big fan of activation, however using one piece of public information (someone's email address) must not have been thought out very much. It is obviously wide open to being abused.

  6. [...] race against the aforementioned groups wastes too much time. I've written more about this topic here and [...]

  7. [...] said bits of this before, mostly here, and I still feel the same [...]


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