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Jun wrote:

Hi, guys —

My boss asked me to make several duplicate copies of the master software here at work to be used:

  • here in manufacturing, and
  • some, to be sent to our customers as required.

We ran out of copies of the original software so we are just making duplicates as ordered by our boss.

I'm not comfortable with the idea of sending duplicate copies instead of the original. (We stopped purchasing them because eventually some customers won't be requesting them.) This is according to my boss.

  • Am I committing a sin by making duplicate copies of original software we have and sending them to our customers?

Please advise.

Thank you,

Jun

  { Am I sinning by making duplicate copies of original software and sending them to our customers? }

Eric replied:

Hi, Jun —

Software piracy — making copies of software without a valid license, at least when that license can be obtained — is theft and thus would be a sin.  Piracy is bad when you pirate a copy for yourself; it's much worse when you make a copy and sell it to someone else, which it sounds like your boss may be doing.

If you are reasonably certain that this is the situation you are in, you should not cooperate in it.

It is possible that your boss has negotiated a license deal with the software publisher that you are unaware of. Thus, the copies you are making may fall under a license. You should ask him about this. I am not sure what your boss means when he says you stopped purchasing them because eventually customers won't be requesting them.

If he means that he doesn't want to stock several copies of the software when your customers may, at any time, stop requesting them, then, if he is honest, he'd order a legitimate copy of the software as soon as he learned that a customer needed it, even if he had to send them a duplicate copy immediately to satisfy their needs.

In other words, purchase them after the fact, instead of before.

Eric
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