Monday, May 14, 2007

Chief Of Licensing

There's someone at Microsoft with that title: Chief Of Licensing. Chief Of Licensing!!!

Chief of what? Chief of Licensing. What? Licensing! Huh? LICENSING!

O.K., how about finishing this one, how many chiefs does it take to write a bad license?

Let's imagine the conversation:

Customer: I want to use my super-powerful computer to help me be more efficient.

Microsoft: Great, first you need to speak with our chief of licensing.

Customer: Who?

Microsoft: He'll help make sure you understand the terms of our licenses so you don't run afoul.

Customer: What's afoul?

Microsoft: Open-source.

Customer: I can't run it?

Microsoft: Nope.

Customer: Why?

Microsoft: It violates at least 235 of our patents.

Customer: What patents.

Microsoft: That's a secret.

Customer: But I can't run it.

Microsoft: Well you can, if you pay us.

Customer: Oh, it's Microsoft software?

Microsoft: Not exactly, but our chief of licensing can help you understand it.

Customer: Understand the secrets?

Microsoft: Not the secrets, never the secrets, just how much you have to pay to run our software or the open-source software.

Customer: But what am I paying for?

Microsoft: Oh, well, that, it's a secret.

Any company that needs a chief of licensing has overly complicated licensing terms. Ask your open-source vendors about their chief of licensing, they'll most likely reply, "Chief of what?"


Anonymous said...

That is Freakin' Hilarious.

Anonymous said...

is this as absurd as having an entire foundation in charge of licensing? (

even if you were to run your business on nothing but open source and/or free software, i think you'd need somebody in charge of CYA license management. who can keep it all straight?

Apache License
Mozilla Public License
PHP License
License of Python
Modified BSD

AAAAIIIEEE! Somebody hire me a chief of licensing to handle it all.

Peter said...


Dave Dargo said...

Thanks on the afowl catch - fast typing.

Anonymous said...

That was very well done, although I'm sure the FSF have had similar conversations!

The title has made me aware of other titles and found this one too:
VP of Business Development and Licensing .