Mint Piracy Solution

By Deane Barker on February 23, 2006

Stopping Flagrant Piracy of Mint: Mint is a stat-tracking app that I actualy purchased and used for a while. I paid $30 for it.

Well, shocker, Mint is being pirated and the developer is none too happy about it. I can’t say I’m shocked that it’s being pirated — when I got it and installed it, I kept thinking, “what’s to stop someone from ripping this off?” Nothing, it turns out.

The developer does, however, have a pretty inventive idea for finding pirates. He wants to enlist other Mint users to randomly check sites through their copy of Firefox:

[…] a Firefox extension that silently checks for a Mint installation on each site visited and if found, sends a ping to a central server. The server could then validate the domain against a list of licensed domains and flag any offenders. The extension would not reveal the outcome or require any input from the browser user. The ping would be anonymous and only fire when a Mint installation was found (and not every page visited). Even if only 3% of Mint’s current user-base chose to participate in this “Neighborhood Watch” it would create a pretty significant canvas.

It’s an inventive idea, and I really think it would work. Too bad it came to this. (Personally, the font size on his site makes we want to go pirate a magnifying glass.)