Macrovision's New Licences Transferable

Written by Brett Thomas

October 11, 2005 | 11:32

Tags: #companies #consumers #copyright #digital-distribution #eula #licence

Companies: #macrovision #steam

In the world of EULAs, Fair Use, and various other copyright jargon, it seems that rights are getting more and more eroded. But if you think it's bad for an individual, imagine heading the IT department for a corporation that is over 1,000 computers strong.

It's not unusual for big business to be the push for new development, but this time there's been tremendous headway. Macrovision, the company responsible for developing bulk licensing packages for many major software suites, is releasing its FlexNet Publisher 11. Most of us don't use this software suite, with its lowest licenses being in $50,000USD increments, but the change it made could make a great impact on end users in digital distribution.

For the first time, licenses are transferable. That means companies can buy, sell, and trade licenses just like a currency, according to Daniel Greenberg, the VP of marketing at Macrovision. This change is supported by a new comprehensive license portal, so companies can see how many licenses they're really using. Companies no longer need to keep more licenses than they really need and can buy/resell with bulk discounts.

You can read more at Yahoo! News.

Obviously, a $50,000 license suite doesn't have much visible effect on you and I. But if you look at the way that Steam and other current on-line licensing methods function, this could be a tremendous step forward. Most on-line accounts are not transferable as written in their EULA, something that software vendors state is for piracy protection (though one wonders if it's to avoid used game sales).

As we get closer and closer to a digitally-distributed world, the non-transferable licenses we purchase remove our right to fair use of reselling something when we're done with it. Could this be the lead-in that consumers need for less-strict EULAs of downloaded content? Or is it going to remain a boon only for the major purchasers of big software packages? Register your view in our forums.
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