TL;DR because I know there's people who don't want to read all this.
- If a user is simply referencing that they are having an issue with a piece of software and that it is cracked (like a MInecraft launcher, for instance), but aren't otherwise breaking the Terms of Service or the law, and can safely have the 'cracked' reference edited out and still stand on its own, it should not be flagged for our attention.
- If the question cannot stand on its own because the cracked software is integral to the question, which would be a violation of the Terms of Service as Oli says, we'll nuke it from orbit like we do other law-breaking things.
There's a lot of grey-area here, but if you see something 'dodgy' you're allowed to flag it, but keep in mind you might not see any activity, or will see a declined flag if it's not openly violating the TOS and can just be 'edited out' and not harm the question at all.
And yes I stole this from Oli's answer - Oli is currently the king of summarizing things in a nice way, and I'm throwing it in this header here:
I'm concerned that, at a glance, I infer moderators aren't worried about piracy here.
That's not the case and, thankfully, also not what you say, but it gets a bit bogged down by reiterating the same ~"don't bother us with this stuff" stuff.
The act of software piracy has no place on Ask Ubuntu.
- It's either completely superfluous to the question... Like telling us what they had for breakfast in a installation question, and can be safely edited out, or
- It's integral to the question, and in which case it's against the network Terms of Service, and we nuke it from orbit like we do other law-breaking stuff.
There will be other examples that skirt between these, but for this discussion, I just need to highlight that there very much are reasons you should hit the flag if you see something dodgy. It's certainly not a hands-off topic.
Just use some discretion. If you can fix it yourself, without altering the fabric of reality, please, do the honours.
Now, the long version of the above...
Going through flags, I see things like this on a regular basis in our flags queue (and yes I did blur out a large portion of the data so all you can really see is the flags raised on this given instance):
For the record, the question that got those flags was a user asking how to resolve a Java error they're seeing in a piece of software. It also just happened to mention they're using a cracked version of that specific software, and does not ask how to crack the software or how to spread the cracked software or how to actually do software cracking/piracy. And I mention all these points for a very good reason.
Let me state something for everyone who does reviewing and/or flagging actively to be aware of: moderators are not the global software police. It is not our job as moderators to police who does or doesn't use a given piece of software on Ubuntu - cracked or otherwise. It is also not our job to close questions or punish users solely because someone uses a given piece of software that may or may not be cracked.
If you are flagging a question for mod attention simply because it mentions that someone is using a piece of cracked or pirated software it does NOT mean that we will actually do anything about it. We may not like that they are using cracked software, but it's not our job to be the police on the matter. They aren't directly violating the rules in this manner.
If you are flagging a question for mod attention because the user is using a cracked piece of software and the issue observed is specifically because of that crack, then consider Voting to Close the Question as offtopic and refer to the fact they should not be using the cracked software (and don't flag for mod attention directly).
This does NOT mean we openly support or condone the use of cracked or pirated software. However, just because someone says they are using a cracked piece of a given software, doesn't mean we should necessarily penalize them for their question if it's actually a good question and could help someone who doesn't have the pirated software with the same problem.
There's been a lot of discussion on this over the years, on StackExchange sites and beyond. One such relevant discussion thread is this one over on Meta.SE, which explicitly touches upon these kinds of things.
Now, here's the thing: Outside of the world of moderating Ask Ubuntu, where I do not wear a moderator hat and do not wield the Hammer of the Mods, I totally agree that the site and community should not be using pirated or cracked software. It's often my job to do a survey of a workplace's systems and infrastructure and software, and determine if we are in compliance with licenses, patching, etc., and determine if anyone is using illegal software. But that's where I'm hired to do that work, and where that company that hired me to do that has strict policies about what a user can or cannot have on their system, and cracked software is against the policies.