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Warezed SoundForge Files In Windows Media Player 1001

An anonymous reader writes "German PC-Welt magazine reports that Microsoft used an illegal copy of SoundForge 4.5 (Google translation) for editing Wave files shipped with Windows Media Player. You can check that yourself by opening any file in the [Windows location] \Help\Tours\WindowsMediaPlayer\Audio\Wav\ folder in notepad or other editors of your choice and looking at the last line. There you will find a reference to SoundForge 4.5 and also a user called 'Deepz0ne' who happens to be one of the founders of an audio software cracking group called Radium."
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Warezed SoundForge Files In Windows Media Player

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  • by Saven Marek ( 739395 ) on Friday November 12, 2004 @08:51PM (#10803954)
    So when does it stop being 'opinion' that big companies don't give a shit about anyone else's "IP rights".

    We bash MS, and get MS defenders countering with idiocy that makes it seem like it's all a battle of opinion over whether MS is a big bad company or simply misunderstood, or whether MS is a monopoly, or just highly talented, whether MS doesn't give a shit about IP rights while enforcing their own or they're just working within a business realm that they need to survive.

    Sorry, It just keeps going on and on like this. MS using pirated software to develop & promote their media player. Indefensible from a company that professes to rely so much on IP, unless they're nothing but greedy hypocrites.

    I'm going with the "nothing but greedy hypocrites" thanks
  • by codepunk ( 167897 ) on Friday November 12, 2004 @08:51PM (#10803956)
    Ok now file lawsuits against every single MS operating system user that will teach them to offer

    I guess what they say is true, once a criminal always a criminal.
  • by rebeka thomas ( 673264 ) on Friday November 12, 2004 @09:06PM (#10804109)
    You don't seem to get it, maybe you didn't read the second page. The point was not that Microsoft used Sound Forge. The point is that Microsoft used a warezed version of Sound For

    Purely presumption. There is nothing in the article that says this was a pirated soundforge, only that the soundforge ID string is present at the end of MS supplied .wav files

    My legally acquired copy of soundforge makes the exact same string. DEEPZONE IS ONE OF THE ORIGINAL SOUNDFORGE AUTHORS. Did nobody suspect to even consider this and check it?
  • by multiplexo ( 27356 ) on Friday November 12, 2004 @09:07PM (#10804121) Journal
    That what you get when some jr. programmers make the adjunct software in a company where it takes forever to purchase anything!

    It can't take that long to purchase anything at Micro$oft. Daniel Feussner [] somehow managed to get nine million dollars worth of software purchased internally for his group which he then flogged on eBay. Of course Feussner later died [] of ethylene glycol (antifreeze) poisoning so you have to wonder if the programmer who made this mistake will end up having the same thing happen to him.

  • by node 3 ( 115640 ) on Friday November 12, 2004 @09:09PM (#10804135)
    Why is it that you believe MS should be allowed to do this, but that they are allowed to fine or have imprisoned people who violate MS's rights?

    MS stole code, they've done it before, and they're doing it now. Given how Ballmer likes to pretend he's some sort of champion of individual IP-holder's rights, he shouldn't have a problem making this "error" right.

    Instead, it's more likely this will take a lawsuit.

    What makes this newsworthy is the same thing that makes Limbaugh's drug use news. It's not so much that he's a druge addict (although there is a group of the public who likes public scandal), but it's that he condemns other drug users to jail, but demands leniency for himself.

    If MS wants a pass on this, then they should lighten up, remove XP activation bullshit, whatever. Otherwise, to hell with them.
  • by Animaether ( 411575 ) on Friday November 12, 2004 @09:13PM (#10804160) Journal
    Just for kicks, do a content search on all *.wav files on your drive, searching for the string 'deepz0ne'.

    You may run across more hits. That doesn't necessarily mean that the author of the software they came with used a cracked copy of SoundForge.

    For example, the Digital Eel game "Dr. Blob's Organism" demo has the deepz0ne string in "powerdn.wav", but doesn't have it in any of the others. That makes me think they probably just grabbed a sound effect off of a (presumably) royalty-free sound effects library (CD/DVD/online), and that particular sound effect happened to be authored or modified in a warez version of SoundForge.

    Similarly the mediaplayer sounds... whose are they, really ? Were they authored/modified by an MS Employee ? If not - where does MS's responsibility come in ? Do -you- check every asset you acquire in good faith belief to see if they may have been touched by a cracked piece of software ?
  • by bani ( 467531 ) on Friday November 12, 2004 @09:23PM (#10804215)
    For now, I'll give Microsoft the benefit of the doubt.

    Why? they dont give it to anyone else. i say give them a taste of their own medicine.
  • Re:BSA? (Score:5, Interesting)

    by saden1 ( 581102 ) on Friday November 12, 2004 @09:23PM (#10804220)
    I believe Microsoft is not only a member but "THE" Founding member of BSA.
  • by oberondarksoul ( 723118 ) on Friday November 12, 2004 @09:25PM (#10804231) Homepage
    I'm not entirely sure how software licensing really works, but isn't it something along the lines of "you pay for your serial number, you may install only with that"? It wouldn't surprise me if there was something in a EULA along those lines, which would make this illegal even if there was a valid serial number issued for the software.
  • by MsGeek ( 162936 ) on Friday November 12, 2004 @09:26PM (#10804238) Homepage Journal
    The guy who started Sonic Foundry and was the original writer of the SoundForge program got his start at Microsoft. A lot of his work for MS wound up in the multimedia code for Windows 3.11 and Windows95.

    Fine way to thank him, MS. I hope Sony takes MS to the cleaners over this.
  • by Alioth ( 221270 ) <no@spam> on Friday November 12, 2004 @09:27PM (#10804244) Journal
    Well, actually it IS a big deal when they are saying "Use our stuff, not that opensource rabble's stuff, because our stuff is free of copyright and other IP violations, but you can't be too sure with open source". Plus their argument that open source has a dodgy pedigree, but closed source does not.
  • by abh ( 22332 ) <> on Friday November 12, 2004 @09:32PM (#10804265) Homepage
    A couple days ago was one of the college tourneys on Jeopardy. The winner was a Comp Eng/Comp Sci major from Carnegie Mellon. His final Jeopardy wager? $1337
  • Re:No Meaning! (Score:2, Interesting)

    by netsharc ( 195805 ) on Friday November 12, 2004 @09:32PM (#10804269)
    "Moment!" is the German equivalent of "Wait a minute!", without the "Wait a", nor the minute-wait long.. The "(no meaning)!" is for "Bingo!" isn't it.. yeah, the machine's dumb for not catching that.
  • Re:Soundforge (Score:2, Interesting)

    by sserendipity ( 696118 ) on Friday November 12, 2004 @09:32PM (#10804270)
    That, in my opinion, is complete and utter bollocks. As a professional sound engineer and media producer, I've been using sound forge almost daily for almost a decade. It has always been pretty much the most versatile, powerful sound editor available.

    You are confusing multitracking software with a sound editor. Vegas solves a whole bunch of problems that Sound Forge isn't designed to touch. Likewise, Vegas or other software like Protools can't hold a candle against Sound Forge when you are performing the tasks that Sound Forge was designed to do. That is why Vegas and Sound Forge are so well integrated with each other. They are pretty much two complementary parts of the same package.

    Furthermore, I used to work at microsoft, and can attest that Sound Forge was in use there during the period that 4.5 was the current version.
  • by Anonymous Coward on Friday November 12, 2004 @09:33PM (#10804271)
    Back around 1985, some company published 4 arcade games for the Apple II. They had used a utility from Broderbund called "Arcade Machine". This was a pretty fun tool for end-users; not many publishers made games with it. Mostly it was useful for making variants of Space Invaders.

    When the user pressed ESC on these 4 arcade games, a screen appeared explaining all the keys, and up at the top it said


    (or whoever it was.) Good job!
  • Re:The real lesson (Score:5, Interesting)

    by Erik Hollensbe ( 808 ) on Friday November 12, 2004 @09:35PM (#10804293) Homepage
    I agree. Also, with the ubiquity of "fat clients", often times developers don't even bother to ask - they "demo" software long before they buy it.

    It's easy to blame it on the managers, but the developers don't help by inflating the problem, promoting the piracy of software where an actual demo would have been more fruitful.

    Dev: "Hey, I signed up for a demo of this. I put your email address in the form."
    Manager: "Ok."
    (2 weeks later)
    Dev: "I need this whiz-bang feature that the demo doesn't support. I won't be able to continue until I get it working."
    Manager: "Write up a PO and put it on my desk."

    Often times, that'll get you software by the end of the week. It's worked for me many times... Where as the alternative (which I have done), normally gets the response, "we already have it, why do we need to buy it?".
  • Does this mean that every file I've created with my (legal) copy of Sound Forge, registered to me, gets distributed with my name embedded in it? What other programs do this? I already know that MS Office docs do -- but I never suspected Sound Forge of something like this.

    Software authors/distributors should be required to disclose exactly what personal information is distributed in files which are created with that product. As much as I like to stick it to M$, Sonic Foundry, now Sony, is the one I'm concerned about here.
  • by Black Art ( 3335 ) on Friday November 12, 2004 @09:46PM (#10804355)
    The animated gif file for "made for IE" logo that Microsoft used for websites back in the 90s was made with an unregistered shareware program. (I don't remember the name of the program. It was about 1996-97 or so.)

    Maybe they need to look at how hard it is to purchace software within Microsoft. "Not invented here" is no excuse.
  • Re:A few angles... (Score:2, Interesting)

    by isecore ( 132059 ) <isecore@is[ ] ['eco' in gap]> on Friday November 12, 2004 @09:51PM (#10804376) Homepage
    I also raises the question of how the hell this was discovered.

    Did some random Joe Q. Hacker decide to start poking around in some random file in the Windows directory? Did Joe Q. Hacker wake up sweaty in the middle of the night and wonder what the hell was at the end of some obscure wave-files?
  • Isn't it possible... (Score:2, Interesting)

    by ProdigySim ( 817093 ) on Friday November 12, 2004 @09:54PM (#10804397)
    Isn't it possible that it's actually legal because they DID own a license for it? That's one of the reasons BitTorrent and ROM sites aren't killed right away: The files are provided for those who have legal rights to the data, but they needed it in another form (i.e. on a computer) or in another location (for torrenting)
  • by digitalgimpus ( 468277 ) on Friday November 12, 2004 @09:55PM (#10804403) Homepage
    Visit here: []

    Say microsoft referred you...

    fill it out, and send.

    Then tell your friends.

    Lets slashdot the BSA about this one? See if we can break a record on the number of reports the BSA ever recieved about something. :-D And see if they actually respond to them.
  • Re:Lessons to learn (Score:1, Interesting)

    by JanneM ( 7445 ) on Friday November 12, 2004 @09:56PM (#10804411) Homepage
    Um, yeah. Obviously, two wrongs make a right!

    You have a whole foreign based on that line of thought; how wrong can it be?
  • Re:Lessons to learn (Score:5, Interesting)

    by pinko-rat-bastard ( 182983 ) on Friday November 12, 2004 @09:59PM (#10804430)
    Oh really? Maybe you should tell that to Ernie Ball []. I'm sure that little tiff with the BSA was all just a big misunderstanding.
  • Re:The real lesson (Score:2, Interesting)

    by ConceptJunkie ( 24823 ) on Friday November 12, 2004 @10:44PM (#10804639) Homepage Journal
    Exactly, you can waste hundreds of dollars worth of your time to go through channels, and wait for weeks, or just go get the stuff.

    I don't condone piracy... often I've simply gone out and bought what I needed.

    In fact the last place I worked at had a policy that you couldn't even install anything on your machine. So, I e-mailed IT to ask politely what the exact procedure was.
    They basically attacked me (for what reason I cannot say, nor could any manager explain), so I just installed the stuff myself.

    A couple days later they showed up in person to demand, with absolutely no diplomacy (like asking politely), that I remove my own personal keyboard (one of them old clunky IBMs because modern keyboards suck) because it was against company policy to modify hardware. I proceeded that ask them why plugging a keyboard in was verboten but almost everyone on the floor had headphones plugged in and no one cared. They responded by getting really belligerent.

    I got laid off after 5 months, which was just as well, because it was the worst job I ever had. All I did was piss people off by pointing out how stupid and inefficient they were (indirectly, like "You've planned to do X. Has anyone actually tried it to see if it will work? Past experience indicates there's a good chance won't. Does anyone have benchmarks?", and received no response, or "You know, if worked a little smarter by developing a simple GUI library, we could eliminate half the team, and make the development process much less prone to errors." They refused to consider it even though they admitted I was right, but you can't charge as much when you are paid by the hour and work efficiently. Actually it was worse than that, they actually told me to come up with a prototype even though they never planned to use it (they admitted this about 4 months later). It seems they realized I had more experience than half the department put together (and they hired me for what was essentially an entry-level job without being up front about that either), and didn't want to discourage me in my first week. Of course, I'd been out of work for over a year, so I really needed the job and pay was decent. But I learned once again the worst torture at work is to be bored and powerless.

    Can you guess who it was? That's right, a defense contractor for the U.S. Government.

    Worst. Job. Evarrrr!
  • Re:Best Friend! (Score:4, Interesting)

    by swv3752 ( 187722 ) <swv3752&hotmail,com> on Friday November 12, 2004 @10:46PM (#10804653) Homepage Journal
    Sony owns SoundForge now. Better believe that MS is going to get bent over.
  • Stac Electronics (Score:3, Interesting)

    by DragonHawk ( 21256 ) on Friday November 12, 2004 @10:48PM (#10804669) Homepage Journal
    Microsoft pirates software -- this is news?

    Roughly ten years ago, Microsoft was found, in a court of law, to have knowingly stolen code from Stac Electronic's popular "Stacker" whole-disk compression utility, and used it in their DoubleSpace utility. That's the reason for Microsoft MS-DOS 6.21 (I think it was .21) -- it removed the stolen code.

    Stac won the lawsuit, but it was too late -- the damage had already been done, and Stac went out of business. The 800-pound gorilla won again.
  • by cduffy ( 652 ) <> on Friday November 12, 2004 @10:59PM (#10804710)
    Interesting counter question: How many OSS Windows apps are compiled using a warezed version of Visual Studio?

    All the OSS Windows projects I've worked on (like the one I'm hacking right now) have gone to significant lengths to be compatible with MINGW32.

    This is actually quite handy, because it means I can cross-compile from Linux. (Yup, I'm writing Windows code, but compiling it with a Linux compiler and testing it with WINE... ain't OSS great?!)
  • Re:The real lesson (Score:5, Interesting)

    by Tony Hoyle ( 11698 ) <> on Friday November 12, 2004 @11:05PM (#10804749) Homepage
    I tried that line.

    The situation: Deadline for $500,000 contract in two days. Really hard to find memory leak in the code (only happens when there's >5 simultaneous users so you can't single step it). 3 developers had spend the last week trying to find it.

    We'd put in a request for Developer Studio the previous month - the request had to be a 10 page report on why we needed it (heck, it's only $1000!).

    I went to the manager. Stated that there was no way we could beat the deadline without some software to help us (it would be hard even with DS, but impossible without it). His response... "There's no money for it. Can't you pirate it?"

    Penalties for missing the contract deadline by over a week amounted to over $10,000.

    I'm glad I left that place...
  • Re:Lessons to learn (Score:2, Interesting)

    by JudicatorX ( 455442 ) <rernst&shadowlife,ca> on Friday November 12, 2004 @11:11PM (#10804778) Homepage Journal
    The question would be will their punishment fit the crime (how many files--modified by illigal software--have been distributed)?

    A better question might be: is it illegal to distribute files created by pirated software?

    Offhand I'd say no, and that if so it'd be a bit ridiculous. But still, it makes microsoft rather hypocritical

  • Re:A few angles... (Score:5, Interesting)

    by rwebb ( 732790 ) on Friday November 12, 2004 @11:35PM (#10804896)
    The question it rasises is how much other stuff is in windows that has IP violations?

    I've managed to get out of the IT/Windows side of things and more into embedded development, but, once upon a time...

    I do recall that there used to be an admin kit that could be installed with NT 4 (yeah, this goes back a ways) that included a "better" command line interface and some typical tools like vi.

    For some now-forgotten reason I "stringed" the vi executable and on the inside it was vim [].

    Much to my surprise (not) the "About" box listed only MS developers and MS version info -- not a word about the vim project.

    So no, it's not the first or only time that MS has "embraced" foreign code without proper attribution.
  • Re:The real lesson (Score:1, Interesting)

    by Anonymous Coward on Friday November 12, 2004 @11:38PM (#10804908)
    are you serious, I fight with my managers not to buy over priced software. Why should the company waste money on products that half time are no better in the end then an equivelent open source product. I'll admit I use msvc, but I also realize that for most of my work gcc will do just fine. I only go with using msvc because it gives me a few extra bytes of optimization, which gcc 4.x serious should take care of. My boss was thinking we'd buy this fancy license managment software and i"m like why apache and a few php scripts with embedded mozilla and why would we need anything fancy. Just because its shrink wrapped doesn't imply better!!
  • Re:The real lesson (Score:2, Interesting)

    by Fran_P ( 740315 ) on Saturday November 13, 2004 @12:02AM (#10805002)
    I agree with the point that you raise about getting management to pony up for software. And that it's just some jackass who didn't want to be bothered with going through channels to acquire software. However, often times there is an open source piece of software that does the job, and is free.

    I bet if MS had used Audacity [] for their sound files, that would raise at least the same amount of outcry that we have here about them using a pirated version of SoundForge. The only difference would be that the gist of the conversation would be "Ha ha, guess Microsoft doesn't hate OSS so much after all!"

    Oh, the other difference would that MS would still be on the legal side of the law.

  • Re:The real lesson (Score:5, Interesting)

    by MillionthMonkey ( 240664 ) on Saturday November 13, 2004 @12:08AM (#10805018)
    A couple days later they showed up in person to demand, with absolutely no diplomacy (like asking politely), that I remove my own personal keyboard (one of them old clunky IBMs because modern keyboards suck) because it was against company policy to modify hardware.

    I thought this was crazy until you revealed that this was a defense contractor. They have good reasons (government paranoia) to forbid unauthorized hardware and software installs. I used to work at a company whose only customer was Lockheed Martin and which was in fact formed by Lockheed Martin. (They form little companies for themselves like this so they can pay crappy wages with no benefits for doing work that doesn't require a classification. The concept of a company with a single customer comes quite naturally to these people.) When I did work in the actual Lockheed Martin facility I had an escort badge. Every time I needed to take a piss, they walked me down the hall and waited outside the bathroom.

    I'm surprised you didn't get fired for plugging in a weird keyboard. They canned me for opening a telnet session one day and sending an email home saying I'd be late.

  • by Fletch ( 6903 ) <`fletch' `at' `'> on Saturday November 13, 2004 @12:21AM (#10805069) Homepage
    Here []'s the info (with a picture) on the $1337 wager. Pretty funny, but he should have wagered $1132 instead; he would have ended up with $31337.
  • by jaysedai ( 595022 ) on Saturday November 13, 2004 @12:35AM (#10805118)
    Windows Media Player also has a bunch of stolen QuickTime code, and rumor is Apple was about to sue MS for upwards of 1 billion dollars back in 1997, but then Steve Jobs saw and opportunity and stepped in. He told MS that Apple would drop the issue, if MS agreed to 5 years of continued development of Office for Mac. Plus about $150 million in cash. MS happly complied.

    So this isn't the first time.
  • Re:Lessons to learn (Score:2, Interesting)

    by joepress ( 224366 ) on Saturday November 13, 2004 @01:46AM (#10805351)
    It's not magic - it's LAW. You Steal something and LEGALLY you CANNOT profit from it.
  • Re:Lessons to learn (Score:5, Interesting)

    by Delphiki ( 646425 ) on Saturday November 13, 2004 @01:49AM (#10805365)
    Has it occurred to anyone else that Microsoft quite likely owns enough licenses for this application, but the developer who needed it for Media Player knew he could get his work done faster by using an invalid license than going through the corporate bureaucracy.
  • by GoClick ( 775762 ) on Saturday November 13, 2004 @03:37AM (#10805657)
    No, but for some reason we will have to buy a license from sco...

    MS probably hired a 3rd party company to do the sound files and they are probably responsible for this.
  • by node 3 ( 115640 ) on Saturday November 13, 2004 @03:55AM (#10805707)
    Do you have a specific example of Limbaugh condeming drug use? Actually, I think he has always been mute on the subject, which may be telling in and of itself.

    I have no quotes. Do you know of a Limbaugh transcript archive?

    He has ragged on Mayor Marion Berry and Robert Downey, Jr. for their drug use. He's a huge hypocrite. He defends marriage against gays due to the rationale that marriage is devised to raise children, ignoring gays *with* children, and the fact that he's been married 3 times (and is either in the middle of, or over with, his third divorce), and has no kids.

    This is the problem with legislating morals. You can get anyone to say, "yeah, sure, people shouldn't do that" (like "people shouldn't copy MS software"), but when the loudest proponents of laws enforcing morals (like Limbaugh or MS) break those laws (which is inevitably going to happen), they hoot and holler reasons why they are immune.

    It's one of the most disgusting things I've ever encountered. How many people have been heavily fined, or have been put in jail for personal drug use? For violating IP laws (including against MS)? Now when MS (or Rush) violates the laws, they should be subject to the exact same harsh punishment (actually, the entire laws should be wiped from the books, or at least rewritten more rationally and prisoners granted clemency).

    Otherwise, you are just using "conservative" stereotypes.

    Limbaugh *is* a conservative stereotype.
  • by Anonymous Coward on Saturday November 13, 2004 @04:16AM (#10805748)
    That's a good point. I searched for the 'deepz0ne' text in all of my wav files. The game Painkiller has it in one file, 'electro-mp-loop.wav' and Alone In The Dark 4 has it in 'blank.wav'. For these cases, I'm sure it was some file they got from the public domain, since it was only the one file.

    In Microsoft's case, it was in all of the files in that directory. So either they used an illegal copy of the software to produce them, or they downloaded them all from some public domain depository that other's had created.

    How can you prove either case?
  • Re:The real lesson (Score:3, Interesting)

    by Simulant ( 528590 ) on Saturday November 13, 2004 @04:28AM (#10805768) Journal

    Wrong. SSH traffic sets off alarms on most DOD unclassified networks. It is verboten.

    On the other hand, they don't do much traffic analysis other than categorizing by port number so if you run SSH (or anything else for that matter) on 443 (SSL), you will go unnoticed.

    My theory of "if they detect encrypted traffic on a port they expect to be encrypted then they won't worry about it" has proven true for several years now. But I suppose it's only a matter of time before they implement something like this: Br eachSecurityAnnouncesBreachViewSSL.html
  • by Fallen Andy ( 795676 ) on Saturday November 13, 2004 @05:42AM (#10805907)
    Hmm. Checked with notepad, and then cooledit.
    Since you can change the producer or whatever RIFF
    field anybody could patch this to anything they

    Come on guys, even the drones at MS have a sense of
    humour. Why does this deserve such a long thread?
    (all big companies have tiny rebels).

    I wish people would stop the knee jerk reaction of assuming that everything at MS is evil. So Anders, Jim Hugenin & Co are *evil*?. Not in my book...

    Misguided perhaps.

    Long ago, back in perhaps '92, MS's *engineers* (note emphasis) taught me some stuff that made localizing my greek/english dictionary a piece of cake. Sadly, their apps people were so arrogant that it took them 7 years to play catch up with me (even though it was my first serious windows app in the wild).

    Even longer back, we used to regard IBM as the source of all evil. Hey, what happened to that?

    I wonder who is next. I just hope we can find another target to villify. This one is getting boring...
  • Re:Yeah right (Score:1, Interesting)

    by Anonymous Coward on Saturday November 13, 2004 @08:38AM (#10806221)
    Caveat: I haven't RTFA; the Google translation 502'd on me.
    I bet MS did not create those files. This kind of work is normally outsourced. I used to do such work myself when I was a freelancer, and I also used a cracked version of SF (although I later bought a copy - it is expensive but superb.) MS should have removed the SF header information when they received the file. But if Sonic Foundry were to sue MS (which I very much doubt, given their mutual closeness), then I expect they would be pointed in the direction of the outsourcer.
    Sadly for many /.ers, this is likely not the kind of sensationalist rubbish that many of you would have hoped for. As with many things MS, the issue here is a more mundane one: Quality control.
  • by Anonymous Coward on Saturday November 13, 2004 @10:06AM (#10806420)
    Folks, there is no PROOF that Microsoft used illegal copy/copies of Sound Forge to create those WAVs. Here's why: all there is, is the word "Deepz0ne" in the IENG field. That's a field in Sound Forge you can use to indicate who worked on the file. Now there are various possibilities:

    1) Microsoft paid an outside vendor who was saying all his software was legal, when in fact he was using a crack of Sound Forge. I think Microsoft is still in a little trouble, unless that vendor had "Errors & Omissions Insurance" which might help in the event of a lawsuit.
    2) Microsoft paid an outside vendor whose ACTUAL IDENTITY was Deepz0one of Radium, and Deepz0ne likes to put that text in the files he makes, knowing that it's a completely arbitrary text field and proves nothing. (even if it appears risky!)
    3) Microsoft paid an outside vendor for the music whose name is (say) Joe Bloggs but actually likes to put other names into his legal Sound Forge copy's IENG field, and on this day, for whatever reason, he decided to use "Deepz0one." Microsoft didn't check the controversial contents of that field before shipping the WAVs. Or maybe they did, but don't know who or what Deepz0ne and Radium are.
    4) An outside vendor did the music, and when he gave it to his Microsoft liason, the liason went ahead and scrubbed out the original contents of the IENG field (as is quite easy to do) and entered "Deepz0ne" without the outside vendor knowing.
    5) The music was composed in-house by some in-house musician that Microsoft employs. When he gave it to his Microsoft liason in charge of Windows Media Player or whatever, the liason went ahead and scrubbed out the original contents of the IENG field (as is quite easy to do) and entered "Deepz0ne" without the musician knowing, and the musician never bothered to check later. Or maybe he did, after the WAVs had shipped to the public, and he went over to the liason's office and kicked him in the nuts, but that's basically all he can do.

    Anyhow, if Microsoft investigates this, it ought to be pretty easy to determine who did the work -however, there is NO PROOF THAT ILLEGAL COPIES OF SOUND FORGE ARE OR WERE IN USE ON THE MICROSOFT PREMISES AS A RESULT OF THIS TEXT BEING IN THIS FIELD.

    I use a legal copy of Sound Forge 6.0 every day. I could from this day forth put "Cracked by Radium" or "Deepz0ne" into every file I make as part of my job. There is nothing illegal about it... it's confusing, sure, but not illegal. Perfectly legal. Except you're ripping off the "IP" of Radium and/or their members, but they're hardly going to come forward and challenge you about it :) Would people then think I own+use illegal copies of Sound Forge? Perhaps. That's their business. If they want to come and find the illegal copies, [George Bush voice] bring 'em on. They'll realise they have egg on their faces, all because I was playing a silly joke.

    The German web site, and Slashdot, have make a pretty immature and gross assumption that illegal copies of Sound Forge were in use by Microsoft during the creation of those files.
  • by wfberg ( 24378 ) on Saturday November 13, 2004 @10:10AM (#10806429)
    Some image editing apps forget to update the tiny thumbnail in the meta information that's used by windows explorer to extract thumbnails (if present).

    Which is pretty cool if people cropped the picture or added black bars to protect the "innocent".

    Also, digital cameras add EXIF info containing date, time, make and model of camera, lighting conditions and settings, etc. It can freak people out when they send you a picture and you tell them "hmm.. it looks to me like a picture from a Canon Powershot A6, did you use the nightshot mode?".
  • Except... (Score:2, Interesting)

    by ulrikp ( 64196 ) on Saturday November 13, 2004 @06:10PM (#10808909) Homepage
    Yes, but so does "of the children of the strangers that do sojourn among you, of them shall ye buy, and of their families that are with you, which they begat in your land: and they shall be your possession" (Lev. 25:45). Yup, you have a biblical right to enslave tourists' children. Or, in other words - not everything the Old Testament says is suitable as a handbook of modern morality.

    Except that the passage you mention is not about morality. It's about civil laws of the Israelite people of antiquity. Theologians (Christian ones, anyway -- don't know about Jewish theologians) generally divide the Old Testament laws into three kinds:

    • Moral laws
    • Civil laws
    • Ceremonial laws

    Of these, only the first is held by Christians to be binding on non-Jews. Thou shalt not steal is in this moral category, whereas social or civil laws are not binding for non-Jews, nor can they be applied to non-Jewish peoples.

    I agree with your other reasoning, though, namely that you have to define "theft" before making blanket statements like that of the grandparent post. I am just calling into question your argumentation that not everything the Old Testament has to say about morality can be applied to modern morality. What you referred to is not about morality, but about civil laws.

  • by sploo22 ( 748838 ) <> on Sunday November 14, 2004 @05:31PM (#10814802)
    This reminds me... in case anyone didn't know how much of a scumbag Jack Valenti is:

    Mr. KASTENMEIER. Jack, let me ask you. Do you consider yourself and your family infringers when you engage in [videotaping TV shows]?

    Mr. VALENTI. I consider myself and my family believing what the plaintiffs in this lawsuit said and they said publicly, they have said it to the press, they have said it to the lawyers, they have said it to the courts. They do not intend to file any actions against homeowners now or in the future. I mean, that is obvious and they have said that publicly, Mr. Chairman, so I believe them. As far as I am concerned, I am going to continue taping because the plaintiffs have said they aren't going to do anything to me. I am not committing any crime. They know that.

    Mr. KASTENMEIER. That wasn't my question.

    Mr. VALENTI. Do I consider myself an infringer?

    Mr. KASTENMEIER. When you engage in such practice.

    Mr. VALENTI. Yes, sir, I do. I am taking somebody else's copyrighted material without their consent and I know damn well I am infringing. But as far as court action or anything else, I am safe. First, it is not a criminal act. Again, the opposition would tell you video, police, and criminals. They show an astonishing lack of the copyright law. They know good and well that that is not a criminal infringement unless you do it for profit. But on the other hand the plaintiffs have said they are moving against anybody in the homes. There is no problem, but 1 know and everybody else knows they are infringing.

    (Valenti's testimony [])

When a fellow says, "It ain't the money but the principle of the thing," it's the money. -- Kim Hubbard