BSA Piracy Fight Continues Under New Name

In light of the recent terrorist attacks, the Business Software Alliance is toning down its latest campaign to thwart software piracy, changing the name from 'Truce Campaign' to 'Software Grace Period.'

As part of its ongoing efforts to thwart software piracy and get small and medium-size businesses software licenses into compliance, the Business Software Alliance is cranking up yet another campaign for the 32 days between Oct. 15 and Nov. 15.

But this time around, in light of the recent terrorist attacks in New York and Washington, the 18-member alliance of software developers is attempting a toned-down and "softer" approach with the campaign.

For starters, the BSA has changed the name from "Truce Campaign" to "Software Grace Period." Language like Truce and War against software piracy … may not be as appropriate given that the nation faces the prospect of a real war," said Laurie Head, director of marketing communications at the BSA, in Washington. "Grace period in itself sounds a little softer than truce."

And while the campaign will maintain its two-pronged assault on the business community, which consists of a mass mailing and corresponding radio ads, the message in both mediums has been modified. Language such as "You have until May 31 to get legal," which was in bold letters in a recent Truce Campaign letter, has been replaced with the following: "By participating in the 32-day Software Grace Period that were offering, you can catch up."

The tone is deliberately softer, according to Head.

Other language changes in the letter of note include the following:

  • Before: "Unauthorized copying is the same as stealing. If youre caught, your organization could face penalties totaling hundreds of thousands of dollars."
  • Today: "The penalties for copyright infringement are serious--sometimes totaling hundreds of thousands of dollars--and in this economy, who can afford that kind of risk?"

The Software Grace Period is being launched in Los Angeles; Philadelphia/Wilmington; Omaha; Winston-Salem/Greensboro/High Point; and Kalamazoo/Battle Creek between Oct. 15 and Nov. 15.

Originally scheduled to run from Oct. 1 through Oct. 31, the BSA pushed back the launch two weeks to reshape its message.

The accompanying radio spots, which have also been modified, are to begin running Tuesday morning in the aforementioned cities.