09 March 2008

Bill Gates Coming to Indonesia

Bill Gates has confirmed that he will be attending the Government Leader Forum in Jakarta over 8 - 9 May 2008. According to the Head of Microsoft Indonesia, the visit is to discuss ways that technology can be used in development and it will not be an opportunity to discuss specific Microsoft products. That seems a little pointless to me seeing that Bill Gates has already travelled all that way from his humble abode in Seattle.

Indonesia still ranks highly on the software piracy index, and a high ranking is not the one you want to be proud of! I guess looking at the positives, in the period between 2003 and 2006 Indonesia's rating fell from 87% to 85%, but it was still good enough for third place in Asia behind Vietnam and Pakistan at 88% and 86% respectively. For these reasons alone it makes sense that Bill Gates at least touch on software piracy and the losses that Microsoft incurs as a result of this theft of intellectual property.

It might even make good business sense because if Microsoft is successful in reducing the amount of software piracy in Indonesia of its products there is no guarantee that consumers are going to fork over the big dollars or rupiahs required to purchase authentic goodies. Most people and companies are likely to migrate to open source products such as Linux. Maybe a reduced cost licensing arrangement is the way to go.

I suppose we find out in May.

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