Mandriva signs the AFUL petition "Non aux racketiciels" against tied sales

Mandriva gives its support to AFUL's action against sales of bundled
software.

Nowadays, when you buy a new computer, several pieces of software are
already pre-installed, be it the operating system, antivirus software
or burning software. It is almost impossible for consumers to know the
selling price, contracts and conditions of use of these applications
and, if they wish to, to refuse to purchase them.

On average, the price of this software constitutes between 10% and 25%
of the purchase price of the computer - that is to say from 100 to 300
Euro. Although the French Consumer Code forbids tied sale of goods
(the computer hardware) and services (software licenses), the
situation continues and deprives consumers of real freedom of
choice. It artificially prevents the spread of free software to the
general public.

The AFUL working group against tied sales launched the petition "Non
aux racketiciels" (No to "racketware") [1] in order to challenge the
French authorities on this intolerable practice. Since 1999, this
working group has accompanied and advised people who wish to claim
refunds for the software licenses that they were forced to buy against
their will with the computer (racketware). Launched in April 2006, the
petition has more than 21,000 signatories and requests only the
application of the law: everyone in France should have the choice not
to buy what he or she does not want to use.

As UFC Que Choisir (French Union of Consumers) is suing hardware
manufacturers and software retailers, another major party gives its
opinion: Mandriva is now a signatory of the petition "Non aux
racketiciels", along with the principal free software associations and
other companies.

"It is a commitment in accordance with our values, our idea of free
software and our mission of promoting Linux. We are in tune with the
open source community which supports this action and has asked us to
engage ourselves", explains Francois Bancilhon, CEO of Mandriva.

Mandriva offers choice to consumers. Today, in countries like Brazil,
Argentina or Poland where users have the ability to choose the
operating system installed with their computer, PC manufacturers sell
tens of thousands of units every month with Mandriva Linux
pre-installed.

"Pre-installed software may be useful for a large number of consumers,
but not for all. Regardless, people still need to have the choice
whether to use pre-installed software", said Francois Bancilhon.

Why can the French market not also profit from the end of the
Microsoft monopoly? Why do the French state and the DGCCRF (French
authority for competition, consumer issues and fraud prevention) not
do their job?

[1] http://www.racketiciel.info/ (in French)

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