The daily Nebraskan. ([Lincoln, Neb.) 1901-current, February 10, 1993, Page 6, Image 6

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    Some developing nations
accept computer piracy
Eastern countries
often may tolerate
. software copying
By Doug Kouma
Staff Reporter
Computer software piracy, the
copying of programs from one com
puter to another, is more than just a
( legal issue, one University of Ne
braska-Lincoln business professor
Ronald Hampton, who has been
researching the topic, said that while
Western civilization typically re
garded computer piracy as a crime,
the act was seen as an ethical issue in
many Eastern cultures.
“Perceptions of whether this is right
or wrong depends on the culture and
belief system that is invoked in a
particular society,” Hampton said.
In many developing nations, such
as China and India, computer piracy
is widespread and accepted by the
populations, Hampton said.
“As a culture, they arc disadvan
taged because of the prices that arc
charged in this society,” Hampton
Madhavan Parthasarathy, a gradu
ate student researching the topic with
Hampton, said some cultures re
spected sharing technology.
These differences in attitudes have
spurred an ethical debate in Western
culture regarding the costs manufac
turers place on software, Hampton
“Often, the time taken to develop a
software program is no more than the
time it takes to write a typical text
book,” Hampton said.
Computer software, however, is
priced much higher, he said. A word
processing program can cost as much
as $400, while the actual cost to the
manufacturer is usually.only a smal?
fraction of that cost.
-A 44
software and those who pirate simply
because the software is available.
Manufacturers are not hurt by the
second group, he said, because those
people would never have actually
purchased the software.
Hampton said manufacturers actu
ally could use software piracy to their
advantage, but fifst, they must ac
knowledge how widespread piracy is.
Hampton said manufacturers must
Often, the time taken to develop a software
program is no more than the time it takes to write a
typical textbook.
business professor
-—- •• —
Parihasaralhy said many people
also were questioning the morality of
copyrighting “intellectual property.”
Computer software is nothing more
than somcone’s“idca transformed into
a series of magnetic pulses,” he said.
This intangible aspect of computer
software makes it difficult for people
to see it as an actual possession, he
Parihasaralhy said students could,
in a sense, be considered a “develop
ing culture.” While they often lack
the resources to buy these software
programs, their need for them is often
Computer pirates fall into two
major groups, Hampton said: those
who must obtain a certain piece of
“accept the fact that it does exist, and,
given that, look at what they can do to
improve the purchase of a product.”
Some manufacturers have already
introduced programs to benefit stu
dents, Hampton said. The manufac
turer of SPSSX, one of the most com
mon statistics programs used at UNL,
has offered, for a small cost, to up
grade students’ copies even if they
were pirated, he said.
Byofferingsucha program .Hamp
ton said, the manufacturer still can
As more copies of software pro
grams arc circulated, Hampton said,
manufacturers benefit from increased
sales of accessories such as upgrades
and program manuals.
Unions granted increase
in student fee allocation
Health center’s
fee request same
as prior year’s
By Doug Kouma
Staff Reporter
The Committee for Fees Allo
cation unanimously votetf Monday
night to allocate $1,641,114 in stu
dent fees to the Nebraska Unions, a
2.1 percent increase over last year’s
r allocation.
The committee
recommended that
the full amount re
quested by the
unions be allo
cated in light of
rising energy an^l
utility costs.
CFA members also discussed
the possibility of reinstating a ser
vice charge for all non-student fee
using accounts participating in Stu
dent Activities Financial Services.
Currently, all studentgroups par
ticipating in SAFS arc assessed 10
cents for each disbursement made
from their accounts. The commit
tee, however, voted against rein
stating the fees on the basis that
money generated would be mini
Kunle Ojikutu, director of the
University Health Center, said the
center was requesting no increase
over last year’s allocation. Pro
jected income would increase 2.66
percent over last year, he said,
offsetting an increase in expendi
tures. (
- -— 1 .m
Much of the health center’s ex
penditure increase could be attrib
uted to added services, such as the
newly added diabetic clinic and a
new computer systeip.
Ojikutu said the health center
faced special difficulties in bud
geting because inflation in the
medical field is at approximately
15 percent, compared to 2 or 3
percent for the general economy.
He said many of the projected
increases in expenditures, such as
maintenance and utility costs, were
out of the control of health center
officials. Other expenses, such as
malpractice insurance and training
for employees, were also on the
rise, he said.
/ think the students are
finding out that we’re a
— Ojikutu
University Health Center
-ft -
“In health care, you arc required
to have continuing education in
order to maintain your license,”
Ojikutu said.
He said the health center also
expected an increase in the number
of students using the center’s vari
ous programs.
“I think the students arc finding
)ut that we’re a bargain,” he said.
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The committee did agree to give
the university system about S2.4 mil
lion over the next two years to cover
operations, maintenance and utilities
costs for 14 new buildings that re
cently have been built and are ready to
“There are several new buildings
coming on line that we have already
appropriated money to construct,’
Moore said. “So we felt we needed to
appropriate money to open them.”
Even with these increases, the
committee’s funding recommenda
tion for the university system going
into the hearing is about S12 million
less than Gov. Ben Nelson’s recom
Spanier said, “I understand the
slate’s financial circumstances and
I’m sympathetic to them, but I intend
to let people know the damage that
cuts like that could do to the univer
The uni versity’s hearing before the
Appropriations Committee is sched
uled for March 9.
a number of possibilities.
“Obviously, at this early date, we
cannot list specific cuts that would be
required,” Masscngalc said. “But the
categories that m ust be considered arc
fairly easy to identify.”
These categories included:
• elimination of whole programs;
• reductions or eliminations of
outreach services;
• additional closed class sections;
• continued deferral of serious
building repair and maintenance prob
• cuts in student services;
• continued deterioration of re
search equipment and erosion of per
sonnel support, including graduate
and technical assistantships;
• continued reductions in faculty
support services such as telephones,
copy equipment and on-site services
to rural areas;
• delays in compliance with fed
eral regulations, including the Ameri
cans with Disabilities Act.
Continued from Page 1
by the budget proposal."
Peterson said GLC members hoped
to voice students’ concerns to the
Appropriations Comm iuee next week.
Masscngalc said the Appropria
tions Committee needed to indicate to
the full Legislature — and to Ne
braska citizens — the magnitude of
the problem the state faces in dealing
with its S68 million revenue gap.
It is that gap Sen. Scott Moore of
Seward, chairman of the budget-writ
ing Appropriations Committee, said
hiscommittcc was attempting to close
without relying on tax increases.
The budget request submitted by
university officials does not include a
list of specific items that would be cut
in the face of reduced funding, as
most other state agencies submitted,
Moore said.
However, Massengale’s statement,
released after the com m i ttcc approved
the budgetcutrecommendation, listed
jeclions based on rumors that just two
or three drinks would push the .08
But, he said, the rumors are un
“It’s just not scientifically possible
to reach that level with two or three 1 -
ounce doses of alcoholic drinks,”
Conboy said. “I weigh 170 pounds,
and (in a controlled experiment) it
look nine drinks for me to reach .08.”'
Conboy agreed with Lacey that the
.08 limit would help reduce alcohol
related fatalities.
“It’s next to impossible to convict
someone who’s tested at under .10,”
he said. “Lowering the limit would
give law enforcement officers a
chance to convict those people who
pose a threat to themselves and oth
Richard Hughes, president of the
Nebraska Licensed Beverage Asso
ciation, said LB80’s supporters were
using “scare tactics toslowlybutsurcly
pul the liquor industry out of busi
“They’re beating a dead horse,”
Hughes said. “Somehow, they think if
we keep lowering the (blood-alcohol
content level) drunk drivers will dis
appear from the road. But the people
we have to get off the road are the
alcoholics, and we’re not getting it
done by picking on the social drink
“We do not have prohibition in this
goes out to dinner with his wife or
girlfriend, has a bottle of wine, gets
pulled over driving home and loses
his license. Thai’s terrible.”
Mary Barrett of Omaha agreed.
‘‘People whodrivc at .08 have noth
ing to do with drunk driving,” she
said. “It’s a small, hard-core group—
probably less than 1 percent of society
— that chooses to drink and drive.
This law would force police to con
centrate on the characteristics of this
hard-core group rather than society in
It’s next to impossible to
con vice someone who's
tested at under. 10.
-Matt Conboy
Omaha city prosecutor
-ft -
Marty Conboy, an Omaha city pros
ecutor, said he had heard rumors and
accusations that lowering the legal
level of intoxication would unfairly
target social drinkers, who have three
or four drinks in a night.
He said he already had heard ob
Continued from Page 1
It’s especially important for drunk
driving cases in which someone is
injured or killed,'' he said. “It’s very
di fficul t to tell the loved ones of some
one who was killed in an accident that
we can ’t prosecutc the defendant, even
though he was tested at JO.”
Norman McPherson, regional su
pervisor for the National Highway
Traffic Safety Administration, said
five slates — California, Maine, Or
egon, Utah and Vermont - had .08
limits, and those states had seen "sig
nificant reductions" inalcohol-rclatcd
David Tittcrington of Lincoln told
the committee how his father was
paralyzed from the neck down last
July when the car he was driving was
struck at the intersection of 10th and
Van Dorn streets by a minor driving
under the influence of alcohol.
The minor was tested at .092, be
low the current legal limit. He still has
not been charged in the incident,
Tittcrington said.
Several small business owners 1
spoke in opposition to the proposal,
arguing that lowering the legal limit
would hurt their business.
Dan Arcuri, a business owner from
Omaha, said LB80 would not slop
drunk driving.
“But it will hurt the casual drinker,”
he said. ‘‘You might have a guy who