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Special Letter to the Editor: Big Brother in your computer

July 1, 1993

Special Letter to the Editor: Big Brother in your computer


Dear Editor:

Many PC users may not realise it, but Windows XP and the Windows Media Player are bringing your computer into the Big Brother world of George Orwell’s novel, 1984.

When you use the latest versions of these, you give permission to Microsoft to disable any other software they don’t like. In particular, these programs may disable programs which convert a CD track to an MP3, even though it’s both legal and very convenient to play some music while you work. To be exact, you agree “These security related updates may disable your ability to copy and/or play Secure Content and use other software on your computer.” (in MS End User License Agreement for XP(SP1) and WMF).

It’s like having your own personal policeman sitting in your computer, except the policeman enforces Microsoft’s laws, rather than your government’s. Microsoft should publicise their new policy: “What will we prevent you from doing today?”

We finally know Big Brother’s name. It is Bill Gates.

Tom Trottier

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