MS EU Monopoly on Last Leg

Discussion in 'NZ Computing' started by Buck Rogers, Aug 8, 2003.

  1. Buck Rogers

    Buck Rogers Guest

    The EU seems able to deliver justice.....where the corrupt US under 'LiarBoy
    Bush - the Deficit King' can't seem to manage it.

    Quote:

    "We have so much material now and we have such a strong case, that from our
    perspective the legal and factual analysis is complete and allows us to
    adopt a final decision," Lueder said of the EU's nearly four-year
    investigation.

    ***************************************************************

    http://www.wired.com/news/business/0,1367,59923,00.html

    MS EU Monopoly on Last Leg

    AP

    12:00 PM Aug. 06, 2003 PT

    BRUSSELS, Belgium -- Microsoft is still trying to monopolize new markets
    even after settling the landmark antitrust case in the United States, the
    European Union charged Wednesday as it prepared to demand its own
    concessions from the U.S. software giant.

    The EU's antitrust watchdog, the European Commission, said recent surveys of
    more than 150 businesses that use Microsoft products showed that
    "Microsoft's abuses are still ongoing."

    The commission offered the company a "last opportunity" to defend itself or
    agree to open up the two markets under scrutiny: low-end servers, which tie
    desktop computers together, and media players, vital software as both
    digital video and audio distribution expand on the Internet.

    "We have reserved the possibility to levy fines," said EU spokesman Tilman
    Lueder. The EU can fine violators up to 10 percent of their worldwide sales
    -- a figure that could reach into the billions for Microsoft.

    "We have so much material now and we have such a strong case, that from our
    perspective the legal and factual analysis is complete and allows us to
    adopt a final decision," Lueder said of the EU's nearly four-year
    investigation.

    The EU will hold off until it sees Microsoft's response, due by the end of
    September, he said.

    Microsoft spokeswoman Tiffany Steckler in Paris called the EU action
    "unfortunate" and refused to comment on whether the company would make
    concessions.

    "We will of course respond to the statement of objections ... and continue
    to focus our efforts on finding a positive resolution," Steckler said.

    The EU's new "statement of objections" -- the third it has issued against
    Microsoft -- seeks to bolster its case so as to avoid a legal backlash. In
    three unrelated but embarrassing court defeats last year, EU trustbusters
    were criticized by judges for sloppy casework.

    The EU also has been treading carefully to avoid another trans-Atlantic row
    like the one that followed its unprecedented 2001 veto of a merger between
    General Electric and Honeywell that already had been approved in
    Washington. That decision is under appeal.

    "They want to make sure their case is as bombproof as they can make it,"
    said Martin Baker, an antitrust lawyer with Taylor Wessing in London.

    Microsoft argues that last year's U.S. settlement, combined with additional
    steps it has taken voluntarily, answer the European complaints. Microsoft
    agreed then to disclose some of its software code to rivals and to allow
    computer makers to hide icons for some Windows applications, a move that
    would boost exposure of competing software.

    But Microsoft rivals dismissed those moves as insufficient and have pressed
    the EU to demand more -- something it seems ready to do.

    The EU accuses Microsoft of using the "overwhelmingly dominant position"
    Windows enjoys on personal computers to help it muscle into the expanding
    market for low-end servers.

    Sun Microsystems, IBM and other companies complain that Microsoft designs
    Windows to work better with its own server software than rival offerings,
    giving it an unfair advantage.

    Lueder said the issue of "full interoperability," especially in
    server-to-server software, was raised by an "overwhelming majority" of
    respondents to its business survey -- yet is not addressed in the U.S.
    settlement.

    "There we see still room for action," he said.

    The EU also alleges that by building its Media Player into Windows,
    Microsoft is pushing out rivals such as Apple Computer and Real Networks,
    which also make software that plays digital video clips, music files and
    such newer content as Internet radio.

    The media player dispute echoes the browser war in the U.S. proceedings
    between Microsoft and Netscape -- in which Netscape was the innovator and
    was crushed as Microsoft leveraged its operating system dominance to favor
    its Internet Explorer. The EU said its survey of music and movie companies,
    as well as software developers, found that "ubiquity" of Microsoft's Media
    Player weakens competition and "stifles product innovation and ultimately
    reduces consumer choice."

    The EU, for example, determined that online publishers increasingly are
    embracing Microsoft's proprietary data formats because Media Player is
    already built into most recent versions of the Windows operating system,
    said one industry executive familiar with the probe who spoke only on
    condition of anonymity.

    The EU proposes that Microsoft offer a version of Windows without the Media
    Player or include rival players with Windows.

    Microsoft also would have to disclose more of its prized software code so
    competitors in the server market could design products that work as
    seamlessly with Windows as Microsoft's own.

    Microsoft has balked at giving away what it considers proprietary
    information.

    "We don't want them to reveal the entire working of their system," Lueder
    said. "We only want them to reveal that protocol information that is
    required for them to fully interoperate."
    Buck Rogers, Aug 8, 2003
    #1
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  2. "Buck Rogers" <> wrote in message
    news:mDBYa.9894$...
    >
    > The EU seems able to deliver justice.....where the corrupt US under 'LiarBoy
    > Bush - the Deficit King' can't seem to manage it.
    >
    > Quote:

    [...]

    Go microsoft! Guillotine all EU officials. The French had the right
    idea all those years ago and it should be applied to beadledom
    central. However, one cannot expect an uprising from a continent
    of nappy wearers.

    Tony.
    Anthony Neville, Aug 9, 2003
    #2
    1. Advertising

  3. "Buck Rogers" <> wrote in message
    news:zZ2Za.10222$...
    > Anthony Neville allegedly said:
    >
    > >
    > > "Buck Rogers" <> wrote in message
    > > news:mDBYa.9894$...
    > >>
    > >> The EU seems able to deliver justice.....where the corrupt US under
    > >> 'LiarBoy Bush - the Deficit King' can't seem to manage it.
    > >>
    > >> Quote:

    > > [...]
    > >
    > > Go microsoft! Guillotine all EU officials. The French had the right
    > > idea all those years ago and it should be applied to beadledom
    > > central. However, one cannot expect an uprising from a continent
    > > of nappy wearers.
    > >
    > > Tony.

    >
    > The fact the Microsoft have broken the law and illegally restricted the
    > rights and freedoms of others to prosper in a free market doesn't register
    > with you?


    If the EU were an upholder of rights, freedoms and the free market
    and Microsoft were heedless of these, I'd be advocating Microsoft's
    destruction. Since the EU is no upholder of rights, freedoms and
    the free market, I'm pushing for its destruction and the breaking of
    all such laws. Does that register with you?

    Tony.
    Anthony Neville, Aug 9, 2003
    #3
  4. Buck Rogers

    Peter Guest

    this quote is from Anthony Neville of Sat, 09 Aug 2003 22:50 :
    > "Buck Rogers" <> wrote in message
    >>
    >> The fact the Microsoft have broken the law and illegally restricted the
    >> rights and freedoms of others to prosper in a free market doesn't
    >> register with you?

    >
    > If the EU were an upholder of rights, freedoms and the free market
    > and Microsoft were heedless of these, I'd be advocating Microsoft's
    > destruction. Since the EU is no upholder of rights, freedoms and
    > the free market, I'm pushing for its destruction and the breaking of
    > all such laws. Does that register with you?


    Are you saying that because EU is less than perfect in your eyes, then
    Microsoft is allowed to commit any injustices it wishes?

    If Microsoft has breached laws, it must be stopped. Acts or omissions of EU
    is no excuse for Microsoft's unlawful actions.


    Peter
    Peter, Aug 9, 2003
    #4
  5. "Peter" <> wrote in message news:...
    > this quote is from Anthony Neville of Sat, 09 Aug 2003 22:50 :
    > > "Buck Rogers" <> wrote in message
    > >>
    > >> The fact the Microsoft have broken the law and illegally restricted the
    > >> rights and freedoms of others to prosper in a free market doesn't
    > >> register with you?

    > >
    > > If the EU were an upholder of rights, freedoms and the free market
    > > and Microsoft were heedless of these, I'd be advocating Microsoft's
    > > destruction. Since the EU is no upholder of rights, freedoms and
    > > the free market, I'm pushing for its destruction and the breaking of
    > > all such laws. Does that register with you?

    >
    > Are you saying that because EU is less than perfect in your eyes, then
    > Microsoft is allowed to commit any injustices it wishes?


    No no, not at all. I think the EU is a ~cancer~ upon political freedom
    in Western Europe and the free market, and Microsoft has committed
    an injustice only once when it pirated some French company's
    code which is a property rights violation.

    > If Microsoft has breached laws, it must be stopped. Acts or omissions of EU
    > is no excuse for Microsoft's unlawful actions.


    Of course it is. Screw beadledom central. Break the laws, but above all,
    break the EU.

    Tony.
    Anthony Neville, Aug 9, 2003
    #5
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