International views of Bill Gates

The World

Mary Kay Magistad in Beijing: Bill Gates has rock star status in China and regularly makes the list of most admired people in China, ahead of many Chinese leaders. Microsoft floundered when it first came to China because it charged prices many Chinese couldn’t afford, so piracy flourished. Then Microsoft opened a research center in Beijing and worked closely with the government and it lowered its prices. But they’re still not low enough for this student. Most computers are still sold with pirated Microsoft software, but Gates’s patience has allowed him to be admired by many in China.

Gerry Hadden in Barcelona, Spain: Researchers here are big fans of Bill Gates and Microsoft, who has given billions of dollars in research grants here. This professor says he transformed the idea of software. He says Gates has also been a sort of moral compass in the technological world. However this year the EU levied a huge fine at Microsoft for anti-trust activities. The professor says it’s important to separate Gates the man versus his company.

Aaron Schachter in Beirut, Lebanon: People think he’s a big mountain, doesn’t represent materialist Western culture. People think he deserves all the money he has gained. And he deserves even more credit for �balancing his life� by retiring to philanthropy.

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