Sunday, September 17, 2006

Problem with Piracy

Besides that whole intellectual property/incentive to innovate mumbo-jumbo, piracy seems to have killed the Chinese software market. I searched in vain for a real copy of Photoshop CS2 this past weekend only to notice that there was virtually NO productivity software retailing in China. Judging from the plethora of Photoshop tutorial programs available, I'd say there is demand for Photoshop but no supply. The one legitimate retailer I spoke to said the prices software companies charge were just too high for most people in China. And apparently, the government has actually done a fairly decent job at cracking down on pirated software (unlike DVDs).

Seems like the Chinese government's priorities are a bit out of whack. If I were President of China, I'd crack down on pirated DVDs and hand out copies of MS Office, Photoshop, and AutoCAD to everyone in order to build a supply of knowledge workers to form another outsouring industry in China. As for the DVD crackdown, I'd start with that "The Constant Gardner" movie I watched this past weekend. Man, that movie was disappointing.

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