Microsoft Donates Recoveries From Software Piracy Lawsuits to Local Charities

SANTA MONICA, Calif., Dec. 13, 1999 — Microsoft Corp. today announced it is donating more than $500,000 in cash and software to three community organizations serving at-risk citizens in Southern California: Team TECH Los Angeles, Computer Hope TM and Second Byte Foundation.

“Microsoft is committed to donating money recovered in piracy lawsuits to organizations – like these in Southern California – that provide technology and training for underprivileged citizens,”
said Dave Derry, general manager of Microsoft Southern California.
“We are pleased to provide assistance to organizations like these that play such an important role in our community.”

Access to technology can truly make a difference, particularly in the lives of underprivileged citizens, by providing users with tools to learn and communicate in new and exciting ways. These Southern California-based nonprofit organizations will use software piracy recoveries in the following ways to improve technology access for the citizens they serve:

  • Team TECH Los Angeles will utilize Microsoft’s donation to build computer labs for underprivileged children in Los Angeles County. Established in 1997, the non-profit organization supports and strengthens the infrastructure of nonprofits dedicated to serving youth through technology by assisting Southern California organizations with planning, equipment grants and computer training.

  • Computer Hope will upgrade existing computers in its Los Angeles technology centers with money and software donated by Microsoft. Computer Hope is dedicated to providing technology access to the homeless, and giving parents in need a place to learn job skills in the area of computer literacy to support their families.

  • Second Byte Foundation of Los Angeles will enhance their mission to improve the lives of students in grades 6-9 by using Microsoft’s donation to identify students that will benefit from having a donated computer system in their homes. This effort is designed to shift the student’s focus from educational failure and delinquent activity to academic achievement and productive behavior. The foundation plans to purchase additional software for the children.

“We are grateful for the help that Microsoft continually provides,”
said Jonathan Campbell of Team TECH.
“We are able to give more to our students because of the generous support of our corporate sponsors.”

Microsoft’s donations from settlement recoveries and judicial awards are a result of the company’s efforts to reduce software piracy – the unauthorized copying, reproduction, use or manufacture of software. The company’s software piracy lawsuits aim to protect consumers and legitimate distributors, as well as local and national economies, from the negative effects of software piracy. The businesses named in the suits are investigated most often as a result of tips to the Microsoft anti-piracy hot line, (800) RU-LEGIT (785-3448). The tips are typically provided by honest resellers or from consumers who acquire suspicious or poor-quality products.

The company recently announced its commitment to increase funding to community affairs activities through anticipated donations of over $25 million from software piracy recoveries – at least $5 million a year for the next five years. Microsoft will donate these funds to a variety of nonprofit organizations worldwide focused on providing access to technology for disadvantaged communities. The company will also donate funds to select academic institutions to promote innovation, entrepreneurship and creativity in the fields of science and technology.

Across the country, software piracy was responsible for the loss of over 100,000 jobs, $4.5 billion in wages and nearly $1 billion in unrealized tax revenue in 1998, according to the

Business Software Alliance (BSA). The BSA estimates that about one out of every four software applications in use in the United States was obtained illegally.

Customers or resellers with questions about the legitimacy of Microsoft products should contact the Microsoft anti-piracy hot line, toll free, at (800) RU-LEGIT, or send e-mail to [email protected]. Information about software piracy can also be obtained by calling the BSA anti-piracy hot line at (888) NO-PIRACY (667-4722) or by sending e-mail to [email protected].

About Microsoft

Founded in 1975, Microsoft (Nasdaq
) is the worldwide leader in software for personal and business computing. The company offers a wide range of products and services designed to empower people through great software – any time, any place and on any device.

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