And that's it.

Si_Daniels's picture

Some advice for Linux users from PC World/Washington Post...

"If you want to import directly from a Windows installation, you'll find the fonts in the C:\windows\fonts directory. Copy all the .ttf files to a USB stick, create a new folder in your/home directory called .fonts (note the period before the word fonts!), and place them there. And that's it. The fonts will now be available in all your applications."

It's sad to see such ignorance around font licensing. If this chap had suggested skipping the middle man and downloading a pirate copy of Windows and the applications I'm sure the article would never have been published.

dezcom's picture

Heck, Si, it is only type, people don't really have to pay for that stuff, do they?

ChrisL

Ricardo Cordoba's picture

Fonts are like water, man. Just open the faucet and it flows out!

bowerbird's picture

sii said:
> It’s sad to see such ignorance around font licensing

yes, and it must make you feel very sad to see exactly
how easy it is for people out there to steal your work,
knowing that there isn't one thing you can do about it.
not a single thing...

-bowerbird

apankrat's picture

> how easy it is for people out there to steal your work

the part of the problem though is that they don't realize they are stealing

aluminum's picture

They aren't stealing. They are infringing on copyrights. Though in the case of the web core fonts, I'm not entirely sure what the current status is on those in terms of being freely distributable:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Core_fonts_for_the_Web#Program_termination_...

(I assume Sii could clarify that for us?)

bowerbird's picture

aluminum said:
> They aren’t stealing. They are infringing on copyrights.

it's general lawlessness, don't get caught up in semantics.

these young kids think that, just because they can copy a file,
they own it, and just because there's a lawn, they can play on it.

-bowerbird

Si_Daniels's picture

>I assume Sii could clarify that for us?

c. 1998 versions of some fonts are available in a package hosted on sourceforge. Pointing people to that package is a lot different from advising your readers to copy "all the fonts" from a friend's Windows machine (which will likely contain 3rd party fonts along with Microsoft fonts not part of the package) onto your Linux box.

abattis's picture

@sii: Don't worry, GNU/Linux users will soon have plenty of libre fonts. :-)

Si_Daniels's picture

They already have plenty of free fonts, including those that have legally cloned the metrics of the core fonts. Sadly its a fact that for every free software advocate who says the right thing about respecting commercial software licenses there are thousands more like this chap.

bowerbird's picture

sii said:
> Sadly its a fact that

pay attention, folks, because this is a _fact_...

> Sadly its a fact that
> for every free software advocate
> who says the right thing about
> respecting commercial software licenses
> there are thousands more like this chap.

_thousands_ of _thieves_ for every one honest person
who knows how to stand within the bounds of the law.

and that's a _fact_...

how can we succeed against such overwhelming odds?

no wonder our society is in such bad shape...

and these kids are so busy with the twittering and
their face-spaces they don't even realize the scale
of the huge problem their lawlessness has created.

> Sadly its a fact that

look, one of those thieves appears to have
stolen the apostrophe right out from the
middle of the word "it's" in sii's sentence.

who knows what they will steal next?

-bowerbird

k.l.'s picture

GNU/Linux users will soon have plenty of libre fonts.

No! You intend to graduate from Reading not just with a family but with an entire library?

Si_Daniels's picture

Sorry for the missing apostrophe. Note that I never called these folks thieves, I said they were ignorant of font licensing issues. I advocate education.

EK's picture

I didn't read the original piece, but if you're copying from your own Windows installation to a linux partition on the same computer, is that piracy?

Si_Daniels's picture

I can't see how that would be "piracy" - it might break the EULA, but that would vary from foundry to foundry. Note that the article was about running Windows apps on Linux - which would imply a different box.

apankrat's picture

> which would imply a different box

Of course it wouldn't beause of (a) dual boot (b) virtual machines

By the way, what's the state of affairs in terms of font licensing for the use on virtualized hardware ?

Si_Daniels's picture

>Of course it wouldn’t

Sorry, but if you have Windows on the box and want to run a Windows application you'd just boot Windows or run the app under virtualization. Neither of these require moving the fonts. The guy is clearly talking about moving the fonts to another box.

EK's picture

I read the article now, and it looks to me like the author instructs the Linux user who wishes to run licensed applications under Linux, for which the user might need the fonts.

Most pirates are Windows users, not Linux users, and as was mentioned here, most Linux users are not "pirates".

Si_Daniels's picture

>Most pirates are Windows users, not Linux users, and as was mentioned here, most Linux users are not “pirates”.

Ah, so the author is trying to tip the balance - interesting theory.

blank's picture

It could be worse. If this was on that paper’s editorial page they’d call for the font designers to be tortured into handing over the files so that they can be converted to run on an operating system designed with freedom in mind.

Si_Daniels's picture

So this newspaper would have Dave rename "Libre Fonts" to "Freedom Fonts"? I actually prefer that. Not got anything against the French, “Libre” just sounds a bit pretentious to moi, non?

bowerbird's picture

sii said:
> Note that I never called these folks thieves,
> I said they were ignorant of font licensing issues.

more minimization of their flagrant abuse of the law.

whichever word someone might decide to describe it,
these kids are using something that they do not have
a legal right to use, in disobedience to the true owner.

and if you tried to "educate" them, sii, why i do believe
they'd just chuckle at you -- if not laugh in your face --
and run off and make fun of the old legal fuddy-duddy.

"hey old man, i suppose you drive the speed-limit too!"
i can just hear them taunting you. and it's not pretty...

heck, look at the very evidence you have mustered here:
bald piracy instructions listed right in an article that was
printed in a glossy magazine with a large print-run and
also in a big prestigious newspaper in the nation's capital.

-bowerbird

EK's picture

Simon, if you're going to quote someone, quote fairly. If you don't, someone might think you work for Microsoft.

Joe Pemberton's picture

You can split hairs with EULAs, and be technically correct, but if we're talking about ethics, I don't get it. I see little rationale in getting upset about this.

I feel no guilt whatsoever in downloading a given album (let's say the Clash's London Calling) that I've bought on so many formats over the years (vinyl, CD, cassette). I would have to try really hard to feel guilt over using a Windows licensed fonts on a Linux install when there was zero effort on the creator/designers' part in making that possible. (Assuming there are no added support costs, etc.)

So, I know I'm letting ethics trump the law in my choice to re-download music that I justify by feeling that I'm entitled. But, maybe you can help me see it from your perspective.

Assuming someone has properly licensed the original fonts, what do font designers lose from this behavior in the article? What does Microsoft lose?

(And Simon, this is a genuine question. I respect you too much to bait you with troll tactics.)

Si_Daniels's picture

Joe, if you interpret the article as someone transferring fonts from a licensed machine they own onto a unlicensed machine they own, then I see your point. It's kind of like a studio licensing one copy of Photoshop and installing it on 20 Macs - at least they licensed one copy. Adobe got paid.

However, the article doesn't talk about this. It is advice for someone who is running Linux, and who has not paid for Windows or Mac OS (both OS's include these fonts). People who legitimately licensed these OS's have paid for the fonts.

The author could have suggested using fonts from an unused copy of Windows, ebay, or given the sourceforge URL. But he didn't.

Does that make sense?

And back to the point of my post. All I said was that it's "sad" that the chap didn't have a better grasp on font licensing, and that his ideas were published in a mainstream newspaper. Ethics discussions aside, I just can't see how that it's good for the font community.

EK> Simon, if you’re going to quote someone, quote fairly.

Well don't make inflamatory stuff up then. Saying that people who use Open Source OS's are less likely to pirate applications software is like saying the Pope wears a funny hat. Most Linux apps are Open Source making piracy impossible.

abattis's picture

Hold on, hold on. First, Sii, when you say "the article was about running Windows apps on Linux - which would imply a different box," you seem to not quite understand what WINE does; WINE is precisely about running Windows apps that are sat on a local hard disk of a computer that booted GNU/Linux. WINE stands for "Wine Is Not an Emulator," and so it does indeed require moving the fonts, because it allows running Windows apps without Windows.

Moreover, the article also says "Fonts that are not supplied as part of [the core fonts] package, but which some applications might need, include Tahoma and MS Sans. You can find these around the web if you search."

(And, it does include the sourceforge URL, btw.)

@kl: Sadly I haven't even made a family at Reading...

Si_Daniels's picture

>Hold on, hold on.

Maybe I'm just being dim, but why the talk of downloading fonts from the Web and USB sticks then? Surely Linux can read the Windows partition?

And to be clear you think the advice provided in the article is completely kosher from an open source perspective?

>Sadly I haven’t even made a family at Reading...

I thought that was a course requirement, or is producing a single font enough?

EK's picture

Well don’t make inflammatory stuff up then. Saying that people who use Open Source OS’s are less likely to pirate applications software is like saying the Pope wears a funny hat. Most Linux apps are Open Source making piracy impossible.

I see the point as quite obvious. The article is open to two interpretations, one benign, and the other encouraging infringement. Given the preferences of the overwhelming majority of open source users, I prefer the benign interpretation.

If you find that inflammatory, take an Advil.

Si_Daniels's picture

In playing the OS-religion card I think you missed the entire point of my post. There is a third interpretation, that the author is ignorant of font licensing issues.

EK's picture

The only cards I play are Taki.

Your third interpretation is just another variation of "call to piracy".

And let's not beat around the bush. The problem for Microsoft is not the ripping off of fonts; it's that they want everybody to buy their products.

Si_Daniels's picture

Well, thanks at least for acknowledging your prejudices. Explains your reaction to my post.

EK's picture

thanks at least for acknowledging your prejudices.

Said the company man.

If you take off your corporate lenses for a minute and review the play-by-play, you'll see that I simply mentioned an alternative, reasonable explanation in context. You on the other hand...

Si_Daniels's picture

Before I posted the link I ran the article by a few folks, to make sure I wasn't misinterpreting what the guy was saying. I then posted a link saying that it seemed as if the chap didn't understand font licensing issues - throwing this up for discussion. Your response a "reasonable explanation in context" (said the academic) was that most pirates are Windows users. How is that a reasonable explanation?

abattis's picture

I agree the article author is blissfully unaware about software licensing.

"why the talk of downloading fonts from the Web and USB sticks then? Surely Linux can read the Windows partition?"

GNU/Linux can read and write VFAT and NTFS, yes, but WINE isn't designed to search the filesystem for Windows' own files, it is designed to run without the presence of Windows at all. Thus the need to copy Windows fonts (other I think sometimes other files, like some hardware drivers) into places where WINE can make use of them.

"And to be clear you think the advice provided in the article is completely kosher from an open source perspective?"

I'm not an advocate for open source, I'm an advocate for software freedom, so I find the whole WINE project to be an own-goal - it promotes proprietary software. I'd rather than articles like this weren't written and instead articles were written explaining what the free alternatives to proprietary applications are, or proposing the initiation of projects to develop them.

So I'll join you in criticising the article for popping off into the web to find unlicensed copies of proprietary fonts, although I guess we part ways when I say that I'd rather the article said "we don't have libre fonts that can replace Windows' fonts, so please consider starting a project to develop them" :-)

Developing a roman and an italic is the course requirement, but that isn't a family IMO.

EK's picture

You are again quoting unfairly. What you are citing is not my first response, and it's not even the relevant part of the argument.

The gist of it, again, is that the article might fairly be interpreted not to encourage willy-nilly copying of fonts, but as a way to run fully licensed applications (including the fonts they require) from an open source platform. I think it's a fair interpretation (a more reasonable one in context) since few users who are pirates flock to open source: they stay with their illegal copies of windows and windows applications. Open source users tend to be people who want to be legit, but can't or don't want to pay for software, or strongly prefer free software. If a user is reluctant to switch to Linux because there's a Windows application that they must run, the article tells them how to do it.

I may be wrong about any of these matters, but it's certainly no reason for you to get upset.

bowerbird's picture

the r.i.a.a. got 1.92 million for 24 songs.
what would be a fair judgment for this?

-bowerbird

EK's picture

the r.i.a.a. got 1.92 million for 24 songs.
what would be a fair judgment for this?

-bowerbird

for sharing, not for downloading let alone copying from another computer.

bowerbird's picture

microsoft doesn't want you moving its fonts
onto a linux machine, i think it's safe to say.

-bowerbird

paragraph's picture

It’s sad to see such ignorance around font licensing.
And that’s it.

EK's picture

Yes, such ignorance. And intolerance too.

abattis's picture

http://www.codingforums.com/showthread.php?t=167303 seems like a ghost from the future.

bowerbird's picture

you know, there is a great opportunity -- right now --
for some font-house (or group of them) to step forward
and do a big favor to the world by releasing a dozen fonts
(or so) for free to take advantage of the new possibilities,
a kind of favor that -- if done correctly, and generously --
will endear millions of future customers to their benefactor.

i'm just sayin'...

-bowerbird

bemerx25's picture

How about bowerbird give said type foundry a working time machine and then, if done correctly and generously, will endear said type foundry with bowerbird and the future will be limitless!...just sayin' :-)

I'm just joking with you bowerbird but I will say I'm getting a bit tired of the "give it away free" arguments - it's hard to make a living for "free". How does "free" feed my kids? How does "free" keep a roof over my head? How does "free" fix my car? How does "free" do anything except raise my status among the anonymous crowds of the internet?

apankrat's picture

> Thus the need to copy Windows fonts (other I think sometimes other files, like some hardware drivers) into places where WINE can make use of them.

You can always symlink (ln -s) the place WINE wants to look at to the place where the fonts actually are. No copying involved. Just saying.

abattis's picture

@epsilicon: True, but perhaps symlinking is too much old UNIX beardy magic for the article's intended audience? :)

EK's picture

Or if overwrites the windows partition with Linux, reserving the necessary files.

bowerbird's picture

i love the time-machine thing! where do i sign up for one? :+)

i thought i was perfectly clear. if you endear yourself to
millions of customers, that is how you make your living,
and feed your kids, and keep a roof over your bald head.

if you could buy from either of 2 vendors, would you buy from
the one who gave you free samples, or the other who did not?

it's an opportunity, folks, not an obligation. nobody is forcing
anyone to do anything here. let's make sure that's understood.
if you don't think the opportunity is in your interest, walk on by.

but make no mistake, i want one of those time-machine things...

-bowerbird

paragraph's picture

Would'nt it be loverly. Bowerbird in the jurassic.

dezcom's picture

"i thought i was perfectly clear. if you endear yourself to
millions of customers, that is how you make your living,"

Why don't the millions of folks you call customers first endear themselves to type foundries by giving them money for free? After they feel sufficiently endeared, the foundries will gratefully sell them fonts?

ChrisL

bowerbird's picture

dezcom said:
> Why don’t the millions of folks you call customers
> first endear themselves to type foundries by
> giving them money for free?

well, that would be another way of going about it, yes.
why don't you suggest it to them, see what they say?

-bowerbird

Si_Daniels's picture

Thanks everyone for the great feedback. Decided to take this off-line and contact the reporter directly. Although I should have probably done that to begin with, the feedback here is super-useful and I've incorporated into the mail.

Thanks again, Si

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