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posted by Fnord666 on Monday February 19 2018, @08:15AM   Printer-friendly
from the don't-stand-in-the-way-of-profits dept.

Electronics recycler Eric Lundgren was convicted of conspiracy and copyright infringement for his efforts regarding refurbishing old PCs. His sentence would have been 15 months in prison and a $50,000 fine except that he was granted an emergency stay of the sentence by a federal appeals court. Now his appeal is pending before the 11th Circuit though it has not yet been scheduled.

[...] McGloin also testified that Microsoft charges computer refurbishers about $25 for a new license and copy of the software but didn't differentiate that from what was done by Lundgren, who was not making a new copy of the software and intended his restore discs only for computers that were already licensed.

[...] Lundgren called his own expert witness, Glenn Weadock, an author of numerous software books who testified for the government in a major antitrust case against Microsoft that was resolved in 2001. Weadock was asked, "In your opinion, without a code, either product key or COA [Certificate of Authenticity], what is the value of these reinstallation discs?"

"Zero or near zero," Weadock said.

He should have listened to the experts like Ken Starks of Reglue. However, no mention was made by The Washington Post article about whether he or the court was aware that he could have improved the situation all the way around by simply upgrading the refurbished PCs to GNU/Linux instead of using a system that is always showing new ways to cause problems. The local LUG could well host an evening event with him as guest of honor to show how to improve the users' situation while staying out of jail.

Source : Eric Lundgren, 'e-waste' recycling innovator, faces prison for trying to extend life span of PCs

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  • (Score: 3, Informative) by EvilSS on Monday February 19 2018, @01:56PM (2 children)

    by EvilSS (1456) Subscriber Badge on Monday February 19 2018, @01:56PM (#640082)
    Except that the end user or even the refurbisher could legally download and use the recovery CDs that Lundgren was going to sell them. The crime here wasn't using the recovery media to reinstall an OS, it was making copies and selling them to refurbishers. Just like I can't make and sell copies of music CDs to resellers who have empty cases for the CDs but not the CD themselves.
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  • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Monday February 19 2018, @05:41PM (1 child)

    by Anonymous Coward on Monday February 19 2018, @05:41PM (#640164)

    Except you need a computer with an internet connection and burner to download and make your own restore disk. This is Microsoft trying to block the path to resurrecting an old PC.

    • (Score: 2) by EvilSS on Monday February 19 2018, @06:21PM

      by EvilSS (1456) Subscriber Badge on Monday February 19 2018, @06:21PM (#640179)
      You don’t think the referb companies have a pc with internet? While it is in their possession it’s theirs and they are allowed to retrieve and install the restore image.