EditorsAbout the SiteComes vs. MicrosoftUsing This Web SiteSite ArchivesCredibility IndexOOXMLOpenDocumentPatentsNovellNews DigestSite NewsRSS

10.23.07

The Fourth ‘Patent Deal’ was with Europe… and the Sixth Deal That Won’t be

Posted in America, Antitrust, Bill Gates, Deception, Europe, Law, Microsoft, Protocol, Servers, Steve Ballmer at 10:41 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Europe’s agreement on patents predates the Turobolinux announcement

Having watched how Microsoft included patents in its deal with then EU (more on this in the next post), it is worth pointing out that the US won’t extend antitrust sanctions, despite rising opposition and the recent decision in Europe.

Here is the latest:

The U.S. Department of Justice said it will not seek to extend the restrictions placed on Microsoft Corp.’s business practices following its antitrust settlement with the U.S. government in 2002.

Many of the restrictions are due to expire Nov. 12, and last week several U.S. states filed motions in favor of extending them for a further five years. Four of those states — New York, Maryland, Louisiana and Florida — had previously said they opposed an extension.

The DOJ had also opposed the extension, and on Friday it made it clear that it would not be making a turnabout like the four U.S. states.

[...]

The DOJ didn’t explain its decision Friday. In August it said it felt the judgment had been successful in preventing Microsoft from continuing its exclusionary behavior.

The states who favor an extension disagree. They say operating systems haven’t evolved as quickly as people thought they would in 2002, and that Microsoft could still use the dominance of Internet Explorer to choke competitors in the emerging Web 2.0 world.

A status hearing that will likely address extending the restrictions is scheduled for Nov. 6 with District Court Judge Colleen Kollar-Kotelly.

The other states pushing for an extension are California, Connecticut, Iowa, Kansas, Minnesota, Massachusetts and the District of Columbia.

Separately last month the DOJ raised hackles in Europe by criticizing the European Union’s decision to reject Microsoft’s appeal of its antitrust decision there.

So, complaints are simply being ignored and no reason is even given. One ought to know that the U.S. Department of Justice has already been caught leaning the Microsoft way in unlawful ways. Examples include:

Microsoft Finds Legal Defender in Justice

Nearly a decade after the government began its landmark effort to break up Microsoft, the Bush administration has sharply changed course by repeatedly defending the company both in the United States and abroad against accusations of anticompetitive conduct, including the recent rejection of a complaint by Google.

[...]

In the most striking recent example of the policy shift, the top antitrust official at the Justice Department last month urged state prosecutors to reject a confidential antitrust complaint filed by Google that is tied to a consent decree that monitors Microsoft’s behavior. Google has accused Microsoft of designing its latest operating system, Vista, to discourage the use of Google’s desktop search program, lawyers involved in the case said.

Remember what happened when the EU ruled against Microsoft? The US government got involved in a fashion that it must never embrace. Here is the response that came from Neelie Kroes:

Kroes said that it was “unacceptable” that a representative of the US judiciary should criticise a court of law outside his jurisdiction.

“It is absolutely not done,” she told journalists on Wednesday.

“The European commission does not pass judgement on US rulings and we should expect the same from the US.”

Not only Europe complained about the DoJ’s gross bias in favour of Microsoft. Here is what the American Antitrust Institute had to say.

The AAI comments on the European Court of First Instance’s upholding of the EC’s Microsoft decision, taking the USDOJ to task for poor diplomacy and mistaken policy in its criticism of the EC.

If you though the DoJ was embarrassing enough, have a look at these other Microsoft-funded lobbying arms, ACT and CompTIA. Here is what happened upon Microsoft’s legal defeat in Europe:

Microsoft may have lost in court, but it quickly tried to win the war of media reaction via organisations like CompTIA, the Computing Technology Industry Association and ACT (the Association for Competitive Technology) which both intervened in court on its side.

“To make matters worse, the government as a whole was caught lobbying for Microsoft in Europe.”This is not the first time that ACT and CompTIA attack the EU. Both are funded by Microsoft, but have fancy names that hide their motives and bias. ACT and CompTIA also attack Free software, Linux, the GNU GPL, various products that rival Microsoft’s, OpenDocument format, and more. To make matters worse, the government as a whole was caught lobbying for Microsoft in Europe.

Who could ever forget heavy lobbying (bullying) in Florida, lobbying by Steve Ballmer, and lobbying by Bill Gates? They seem to be in total control of the government. There are many more, including Bingham McCutchen.

Microsoft Paid Paid Bingham McCutchen $160,000 to Lobby Federal Gov’t in First Half of 2007

There are many, many more, but it would take time to fetch the references and post them here.

At the end of the day, the situation in Europe is a poor one. Microsoft made its agreement incompatible with the GNU GPL and included patent provisions. In the US, there won’t even be an (sixth) agreement because the government keeps offering Microsoft ‘protection’, which is mutual. Hopefully you can see that politics simply cannot be separated from what ought to have been a purely technical and litigious discussion. There’s sheer abuse in the system.

Related articles:

E-mails released by the committee show that Abramoff, often with the knowledge of the groups’ leaders, exploited the tax-exempt status and leveraged the stature of the organizations to build support among conservatives for legislation or government action sought by clients including Microsoft Corp., mutual fund company DH2 Inc., Primedia Inc.’s Channel One Network, and Brown-Forman, maker of Jack Daniel’s whiskey.

Continuing on the theme of which politicians are receiving money from who. Here is a list of candidates who took money from MSFT.

Microsoft took first place with $651,100 given out, while Hewlett-Packard gave only $185,550, and Gateway gave a paltry $2,000. Microsoft’s donations certainly illustrate well the true size of the company and the extent of its political concerns.

Share this post: These icons link to social bookmarking sites where readers can share and discover new web pages.
  • Digg
  • del.icio.us
  • Reddit
  • co.mments
  • DZone
  • email
  • Google Bookmarks
  • LinkedIn
  • NewsVine
  • Print
  • Technorati
  • TwitThis
  • Facebook

If you liked this post, consider subscribing to the RSS feed or join us now at the IRC channels.

Pages that cross-reference this one

What Else is New


  1. Links 27/7/2014: KDE 4.14 Beta 3, KDE 4.14 Beta 3 Released

    Links for the day



  2. Apple and Microsoft Are Proprietary Software Companies and the Media Should Stop Openwashing Them

    New examples where proprietary software giants are characterised as FOSS-embracing and FOSS-friendly by gullible or dishonest 'journalists'



  3. Bloomberg's Microsoft Propaganda

    Bloomberg delivers 'damage control' and PR ahead of the layoffs announcement; Microsoft uses Nokia to hide it and Bloomberg helps Microsoft by radically modifying headlines



  4. Frequency of Browser Back Doors in Microsoft Windows is Doubling

    The vulnerabilities which Microsoft tells the NSA about (before these are patched) are significantly growing in terms of their numbers



  5. FUD Entities Entering the FOSS World

    Symantec enters the AllSeen Alliance and Sonatype is once again trying to claim great insecurity in FOSS due to software licensing



  6. Groklaw Back in the Wake of ODF in the UK?





  7. Links 26/7/2014: New Wine, Chromebooks Strong Sales

    Links for the day



  8. Links 25/7/2014: GOG With GNU/Linux, Ubuntu 14.04.1 LTS

    Links for the day



  9. Links 24/7/2014: Oracle Linux 7; Fedora Delays

    Links for the day



  10. Valerie Strauss Explains Why Gates Foundation's Lobbying for 'Common Core' (Privatisation) is a Swindle That Makes Microsoft Richer

    Continued criticism of the Gates Foundation's lobbying and masquerading, with more journalists brave enough to highlight the corruption



  11. USPTO Officially Sets New Guidelines to Limit Scope of Software Patents in the United States

    Even patent lawyers finally acknowledge that the incentive to file software patent applications has been reduced, as the scope of patents on software has been noticeably narrowed and they are harder to acquire, let alone enforce in a courtroom



  12. UK Government Adopts OpenDocument Format (ODF) and Microsoft Already Attacks the Government Over It, Showing Absolutely No Commitment to Open Standards

    Only "Microsoft as the standard" is the 'standard' Microsoft is willing to accept, as its response to the Cabinet Office's judgment reveals



  13. Microsoft Layoffs of 2014

    Another quick look at Microsoft's horrible state of affairs and why it has virtually nothing to do with Nokia



  14. Links 22/7/2014: Linux 3.16 RC 6, New UberStudent

    Links for the day



  15. Links 20/7/2014: Jolla in India, Mega Censored in Italy

    Links for the day



  16. Longtime Mono Booster Joins Microsoft-linked Xamarin

    Jo Shields almost joins Microsoft, settling instead for its proxy, Xamarin



  17. Linux Foundation Welcomes Patent Aggressor Red Bend Software

    The Linux Foundation's AllSeen Alliance welcomes as a member a company that uses software patents to sue Free/Open Source software



  18. Matt Levy From Patent Progress (and CCIA) Does Not Really Want Patent Progress

    Matthew ('Matt') Levy moved into a foe of patent progress last year, but he still runs a site calls Patent Progress, in which he diverts all attention to patent trolls (as large corporations such as Microsoft like to do)



  19. Attacking FOSS by Ignoring/Overlooking Issues With Proprietary Software

    The biasing strategy which continues to be used to demonise Free/Open Source software (FOSS) along with some new examples



  20. Links 19/7/2014: CRUX 3.1 is Out, CyanogenMod Competes With Google Now

    Links for the day



  21. Microsoft's Massive Layoffs Go Far Beyond Nokia; Nokia's Android Phones Axed by Microsoft's Elop

    Microsoft's rapid demise and permanent exit from Nokia's last remaining Linux platform (after Microsoft had killed two more)



  22. Patents on Software Already Being Invalidated in Courts Owing to SCOTUS Ruling on 'Abstract' Patents

    The Federal Circuit Appeals Court has just "invalidated a software patent for being overly abstract," says a patents expert



  23. OpenSUSE 'Community' is Crumbling, AttachMSFT Killed SUSE's Potential (Except as Microsoft Tax)

    Not much too see in the land of SUSE and Attachmate, or formerly the company known as Novell



  24. Links 18/7/2014: Slackware Turns 21, Spotify Switches to Ubuntu

    Links for the day



  25. Links 16/7/2014: Manjaro 0.8.10 Third Update, SIA Migrates to Red Hat

    Links for the day



  26. Microsoft's Latest Round of Massive/Bulk/Large-scale Layoffs

    Microsoft boosters are preparing 'damage control' pieces ahead of massive layoffs at Microsoft



  27. Secrecy Allows British Government to be Manipulated by Microsoft for Spyware Behind Closed Doors

    Dependence on malicious software from NSA ally Microsoft is highly dependent, at least in Britain, on government secrecy and vain refusal to comply with Freedom of Information (FOI) requests



  28. Software Patent Applications Already Being Rejected in the US Owing to SCOTUS Ruling, Some Patent Lawyers Are Fuming

    Good news on the software patents front as the USPTO starts rejecting software patent applications, based on patent lawyers' words



  29. Links 15/7/2014: New Plasma, Google Announces Project Zero

    Links for the day



  30. Interest in Free Software Coverage and 9 Months With Tux Machines

    Thoughts about the level of interest in Free/Open Source software (FOSS) and growth of at least some sites that focus on GNU/Linux


CoPilotCo

RSS 64x64RSS Feed: subscribe to the RSS feed for regular updates

Home iconSite Wiki: You can improve this site by helping the extension of the site's content

Home iconSite Home: Background about the site and some key features in the front page

Chat iconIRC Channel: Come and chat with us in real time

CoPilotCo

Recent Posts