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LETTERS : Oppose Copy Protection

February 17, 1985

Bravo for your article, "New Program's Copy-Protection System Produces an Unhappy Surprise", (Computer File, Jan. 14). Our organization uses a lot of application software, and we write ours as well.

While we tightly control copying of software and have summarily terminated employees who misuse the copy process, we oppose any copy-protection scheme, will not buy or recommend such software, and we return any that is found to have one. We do this because such an approach is ultimately self-defeating and will boomerang in disgust from the marketplace.

We want to hasten that process by generating a users organization (of screened members who are legitimate users of software) to challenge, in court if necessary, copy-protected software producers on a number of grounds--among them, fitness for use.

We appreciate the problem of piracy since we design software ourselves, but copy-protection is not a solution--pricing on the marketplace is. E. A. SHNEOUR

Director, Biosystems Research Institute,

La Jolla

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