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Doug's Mailbag: Do You Agree Not To Sue?

Readers respond to Microsoft's attempt to block class action lawsuits brought by its software owners:

If I had to guess, these new terms don't really mean much. A good lawyer (which will cost you an arm and a leg) can always get your case in front of a judge but, in most cases, you're just as well off going before Judge Judy. At least then you will get to walk away with a free trip to California and a few hundred bucks for spending money!

Buying anything has always been a case of 'caveat emptor' (buyer beware). But your beef has got to be more than the cost of a software title before you can build a case worth spending your hard-earned money on.

My response to these new terms and conditions? Ho-hum.

I'm not sure why anyone would feel the need to join a class action suit against Microsoft based on dissatisfaction with software. Every Microsoft app I'm familiar with either offers a downloadable trial version or can be run for at least 30 days unlicensed. For retail products, if the store won't accept a return, Microsoft will allow you to return the item to them up to 45 days from purchase.

I would much rather get my money back and move on to the next project than to join a class action, wait forever, fill out pages of documentation, then get back a fraction of my investment. As you say, many of these suits are lawyer enrichment schemes, especially when directed at a company that allows you to try before you buy.

Hey, guess what, class action suits have a place! They keep big corporations honest! They keep companies honest. Maybe, all the individuals should sue independently and tie up the courts and corporations for years!

Share your thoughts with the editors of this newsletter! Write to Letters printed in this newsletter may be edited for length and clarity, and will be credited by first name only (we do NOT print last names or e-mail addresses).

Posted by Doug Barney on 06/13/2012 at 1:19 PM


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