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Re: [ossig] Roundtable on Intellectual Property Right Cooperation Between Malaysia and the US
jason chong wrote:
> We're gonna have a tough fight on this one. The average Malaysian will
> probably not be interested in software patents or whatever patents
> because in their eyes, the immediate benefits from being 'colonized' far
> outweights having to put up with inefficient GLCs and institutionalized
> racism status quo and rampant corruption/monopoly. The people are most
> likely not going to look at the implications in the long term. Short
> term gains are what most Malaysians are used to in their principle of
> life, from human relationships to business.
You may as well replace 'Malaysian' with a variable and write some 'for
CITIZEN in `ls world` do echo .... $CITIZEN... done'.
During the re-unification of Germany, I used to live in Nürnberg
(Nuremberg); some 100 km from the Iron Curtain. The huge majority of the
citizens of the then German Democratic Republic could not get capitalism
through their doors early enough, better today than tomorrow. It meant
better products, oranges, good quality chocolate, BMW and Mercedes. (I
don't have to mention that there was a strict, authoritarian and corrupt
régime, do I ?). It took less than two years for everyone to understand
the global principle of balance: There was available what most had
dreamt about; but also the price of bread and rent increased around tenfold.
We (in Malaysia) would buy into FTA with huge unemployment, social
unrest. And higher prices for petrol, gas, bread, food.
Most of all in the former GDR, the societal relations broke down;
friendship and social nets replaced by greed and the sheer need to
survive. Some - and not few - perceive the situation as
'colonialisation' and still resent it. You mentioned these aspects; but
I am afraid you painted too rosy a picture of the situation once FTA has
Software Patents not only wipe out the little patches of local FOSS
industry, they'll also wipe any (independent) software makers. Finally,
no more pasar malam; no more RM 8 DVDs; and Windows Vista will set you
back around RM 400 and more. Once the FTA would be fully implemented,
Which finally gives us a chance, because suddenly FOSS would come into
perspective w.r.t. costs of acquisition; something not done now, either
for disregard of 'IP' or disregard of the costs involved. (During my
years in Malaysia I was told a few times that the price of FOSS was
unacceptable: no money to spend == no 'sharing'.)
In conclusion of this OT: Probably FTA isn't quite as good as we tend to
make it out; the current status quo not as bad as we tend to see it.
Finally, as FOSS people, we would have to deliver here as well as there.
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