TechDirt tries to put a pretty face on vendor-financed software/hardware deals, but let's be clear: , you can't afford to buy it. If you can't afford to buy software (or hardware) with cash or bank financing, you can't afford to buy software.
I'm not sure why this is complicated for some. The last organization you want to borrow from to buy software is your software vendor. This lets the vendor completely control your destiny, not to mention the fact that it creates serious conflicts of interest for the vendor (e.g., it can charge maximum price since it is financing the deal). This is the sort of muddled thinking that put the global economy in the toilet in the first place.
Valleywag is right to call out that such arrangements usually end badly for technology shareholders. Defaults on loans are a fact of life, whether for bank loans or vendor loans. The difference is that vendors have to not only back out of bad loans, but also the revenue.
I have a better idea: spend less on IT. Buy open source.