• A t-AI-l of two cities

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    ISSUE 20.35 • 2023-08-28 LEGAL BRIEF By Max Stul Oppenheimer, Esq. Generative artificial intelligence is the latest of the “we’ve never seen anything
    [See the full post at: A t-AI-l of two cities]

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    • #2583995

      Thanks for a helpful article. I had received notification of the new MSA but did not know what it meant.

      It seems to me that, if you can, the best course of action is never to put any content on Microsoft’s section of the Cloud, but keep everything on local computers. Being retired and with limited needs to collaborate, that is what I do.

      I find it hilarious that Microsoft forbids us from scraping, but that is exactly what they intend to do.

      And finally, I did (once) have a copy of  Bookshelf hanging around. However, when I bought a new computer, it refused to run saying I did not have a high enough screen resolution. Technology had moved on and the specific screen format Microsoft demanded was now obsolete. My software (quite expensive at the time) was useless. Good one, Microsoft.

      Win 10 Pro x64 Group A

    • #2584007

      Thank you Professor Max, you always make me think…

      Microsoft’s ‘land grab’ will have far-reaching consequences, won’t it?

      By implication, when individuals accept the MSA when installing MS products, companies and governments will effectively sign away most, if not all, of their intellectual property after 30 September.  Then via business partnerships, the whole thing recurses, so that most global content eventually becomes owned by Microsoft!  And jointly by everyone else as well?

      That’s a massive responsibility to place upon system administrators – I’d say it is well beyond their job descriptions.  So if not them, does it mean legal counsel will have to install every product or service in future?

      Microsoft’s move doesn’t seem to pass the reasonableness test. As you say, we’ll need somebody much more powerful (in each country/jurisdiction) to test it.

      Looking forward to your next intriguing instalment…

      Tony H, Bristol UK


    • #2584017

      Updated version of “We are from the government (MS) and we are here to help (ourselves).

    • #2584040

      Max, I’m wondering if you have a reference for where I might read what the … represent in this paragraph? Seems quite important. One hallmark of differentiation between Microsoft and Google has always been that Google took full ownership of all content uploaded into it and Microsoft took the “your content is your content” path making it more private and secure. If they’ve gone to the dark side, it would seem that it’s in these …’s.

      To the extent necessary to provide the Services to you and others, to protect you and the Services, and to improve Microsoft products and services, you grant to Microsoft a worldwide and royalty-free intellectual property license to use Your Content … Your Content may appear in demonstrations or materials that promote the Service.

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      • #2584138

        If they could suck in your soul they would! 😈


        Just because you don't know where you are going doesn't mean any road will get you there.
    • #2584060

      From the article:

      Microsoft has powerful weapons at its disposal. If you violate its terms, it can take actions including “limiting access to certain features or Services, stopping providing Services, [and] closing your Microsoft account immediately.” In case you didn’t realize it, “Closure of your access to a Service or your account may result in forfeiture of content licenses, [and] associated content … .” Be sure you keep backups.

      Just not in OneDrive.

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    • #2584074

      This is exactly why my use of Microsoft products doesn’t extend beyond Windows itself (which is pretty much unavoidable in the business world).  There are three tech companies in which I have absolutely zero trust regarding privacy: Google, Facebook, and Microsoft.

    • #2584086

      A thoughtful analysis of MS’s hubris.  I particularly liked:  “If you’re going to get a better deal, someone with a lot more power will need to take up your cause.”  Seems to me that the Federal Government is the obvious choice for “someone”.  The challenge will be in achieving any useful results in the foreseeable future.

    • #2584090

      I’m wondering if you have a reference for where I might read what the … represent in this paragraph?

      Look at the MSA here, and see paragraph 2.b under “Your Content.”

      • #2584103

        A chunk omitted by the “…” makes it sound worse than it is (deliberately, I suspect, since the first half of the sentence was left out):

        If you publish Your Content in areas of the Service where it is available broadly online without restrictions, Your Content may appear in demonstrations or materials that promote the Service.

        It does not amount to “I get to use it whenever and however I want.”

    • #2584828

      The MSA agreement is a contract in which Microsoft grants you the right to use their product and, in exchange, you grant them the right to use your content.

      This sounds a lot like what John Deere was doing a while back (and may still be doing) — since their tractors were literally filled with computer chips which contained John Deere proprietary software, they pretty much claimed ownership of the tractor, even though you paid thousands of dollars for it — you weren’t allowed to do any repairs yourself; a John Deere rep had to do all repairs — the parts wouldn’t work if they didn’t activate them first.

      Group "L" (Linux Mint)
      with Windows 8.1 running in a VM
    • #2584937

      My impression is that Max Oppenheimer provides a lucid summary of the MSA.  After rereading his article, I agree with the following from his concluding remarks:

      “It’s pretty clear that your rights are not high on Microsoft’s priorities. Its objectives are twofold: getting access to content and training materials for its new AI products while preventing competitors from doing the same, and trying to shield itself from liability from the growing number of lawsuits over AI.”

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