LiveBrianD, on 23 October 2011 - 10:07 AM, said:
I think OS X Server, now that I think about it, CAN legally be run in a virtual machine ON MAC HARDWARE, but not on a regular PC>
You are correct. It is illegal to run it on anything other than MAC hardware. It's a legally binding contract granting you license to USE their software according to the EULA. When you pay for your driver's license, you didn't buy the roads, or the right to make the rules. If you violate the contract, the courts will, and have upheld suits by Apple. There is zero gray area. Even having a site that instructs people how to get around copyright protection is illegal, including allowing other people discuss it in their forums. Forum owners have been very successfully sued in the past for not policing their forums. Try talking about how to change a cell phone's ESN on a cell phone forum, and see what happens.
From a legal perspective, once criminality has been established, corporate veils and other protection schemes are no longer effective. Ignorance is not a factor that can be considered. They can go back several years to get back money given to others or over compensated them for, even if the people you gave it to don't have the ability to pay, and had no idea what was going on. It works the same as if the police informed them that they bought a stolen car. If there is criminal intent, in most cases, a successfully sued party will not be allowed to declare bankruptcy. Even when criminal intent cannot be established, the lack of reasonable business insurance coverage allows them to pierce the corporate veil and other protection schemes.
The uneducated say, "There are so many, and a lot of them on other countries that are not friendly. It would cost more to go after them than they could get." To that I say you underestimate attorneys to your own peril. Approximately 5 months ago, I received a call from a business acquaintance named John, actual name, for some advice. He had received a call and a written release to settle for $1200 out of court for downloading a movie from a torrent site. It didn't take much research to learn at the bottom of this was a company based out of New York city that specializes in this. Local attorneys, US and elsewhere, can't lose by forming a business alliances with them. This company collects information, and when they have a enough people within a certain jurisdiction, the letters go out and the calls start. Those who don't settle, and all lined up back to back for their day in court. Their methods of proof have already established legal precedent, just as with DNA and fingerprints. They have more money than you do. The torrent site owner may be in on it, or have a gun to his head. ISPs cooperate so they don't get sued, and when you signed your agreement with the ISP, they passed the risk for what you do with that connection on to you. Public access points even require an agreement that you will accept the risk for your behavior. You would have to be dumber than a sack of hammers to have an unsecured wireless connection because the buck stops with you when that truck driver downloads that illegal movie using your connection. You are the one that has to pursue the truck driver and prove that he did it. The company in New York had an established track record of not bluffing. Research showed a lady in John's jurisdiction just went down for $220K. John's options were to pay $1200, or accept that risk. The company in New York knows that if they make an example of a few, they will be able to settle on their terms from the others, as long as their demands are not too high. The number for maximum profitability is a known number, easily calculated from historical data. Based on file dates, it was obvious that they knew exactly when John downloaded the file. My advice to John? I asked him if he did it. He said yes. I asked, "What is your plan? Are you willing to lie in court? You're a crook, and just constantly trying to justify your actions in your mind will cost you far more than $1200. They are offering you your innocence and self respect back for $1200. Take it, and learn from it."
Companies like the one in New York, knock on doors of companies, and bid for the opportunity to pursue violators. They have developed a proven system that they've continually refined over time. Companies simply give them the OK when it's in their best interest. You don't know when that day will come, or if it already has. They didn't tell John until months after the fact. One can only speculate who Apple allows to be pursued. Based on what I've seen, Apple give the green light to pursue those selling non-Apple computers with OS/X on them both in the US and abroad.
I don't see Apple as operating any differently than Microsoft. They build the product's market share by getting it into people's hands. Prior to Vista, OS/X couldn't even maintain its current market share in the PC space. Vista changed all of that. I see in Apple's restraint to crack down on crooks as a means to profit from their contribution to their market share by forcing them and their recruits into paying customers later. Drug dealers work the same way. Apple has thus far not allowed the pursuit of this cottage industry by companies like the one in New York simply because it is not in their best interest. Apple's market share in business is less than 5%. They badly need mind share and developers. iPhones and iPads have given earned them enough respect for business owners to allow it to be part of a conversation. But you would have to believe that the tail wags the dog to believe the consultant will carry a MAC, when 95+% of the business market and his work involves a PC. Outside of making a statement on campus or the coffee shop, MAC's niche is currently too limited. They need to attract those who will push it beyond that, not discourage them.
I was/am looking for a way to run OS/X in VMware Workstation 8 on my Dell laptop so I could familiarize myself with it, and recommend it and support it if we can find a good application for it. Microsoft, VMware, and backup software people fall all over themselves trying to get copies of their software in our hands. John Q. Public can download Windows 8 Customer Preview for free. So far, I've discovered no legal way, other than on an Apple platform, to run it. I realize Apple's revenue is tied to their hardware. However, that's not my problem, and they are the ones with the business market share problem. If they are betting on me to chase the < 5%, while having the knowledge of illegal software to eat away at my mind and self worth, it's a bet that will never pay off.
This post has been edited by ITArchitect: 06 April 2012 - 10:34 AM