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

12.01.07

More Funny Things in the US Department of Justice

Posted in America, Antitrust, Europe, Law, Microsoft, Novell at 7:05 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Attempts to identify the culprits in a rotten system

One thing that continues to fascinate is the ability of wealthy companies to make justice more perverse than it already is. A couple of days ago we showed that Microsoft is capable of escaping strong criticism thanks to business partners, insiders, and proxies. This intrigues. There are many more examples in the past year's news (please do read the cited examples to convince yourself that there is a clear pattern).

It is curious to find that Thomas Barnett from the Department of Justice still appears to be protective of monopolies without proper explanations. Here is the most recent example.

Barnett is the same official who recently argued against the need for a lengthier period of government oversight on Microsoft’s antitrust agreement with the government. Also under his tenure, the megamerger of AT&T and BellSouth received unconditional approval from his agency, although it did propose conditions on AT&T’s recent purchase of the rural wireless carrier Dobson Communications

It is worth emphasising that AT&T has had its own share of abuses. Looking at the past few months alone, here are 5 arguably disturbing examples:

1. AT&T admits it censored other bands

It looks like Pearl Jam isn’t the only band that has had its politically charged comments bleeped from concerts streamed from AT&T’s Blue Room Web
site.

[...]

AT&T quickly apologized for the incident and blamed the company that handles the Webcasting for performances on Blue Room.

2. Customers can sue AT&T, after all

A federal court in San Francisco has decided that AT&T’s wireless contract is “unconscionable”.

3. AT&T takes another step towards filtered network with investment in Vobile

AT&T announced earlier this year that was planning to introduce content filtering of some sort for all video passing across its network. Exactly what AT&T was thinking remained unclear: would the company truly attempt to reassemble the fragments of peer-to-peer transmissions, then extract video from all sorts of different codecs, then attempt to match it-in real time-to some database of copyrighted works? Would such a thing even be possible?

4. Hey, AT&T, What’s the Value of a Closed Network Again?

Closed networks, its proponents maintain, offer a trade-off. Individuals or outside developers can’t make any changes or improvements to it. But since the network and its applications are controlled at a single source, individuals are supposed to get an easier experience in which they don’t have to think about the network, just what they’re doing on it. Trust the network.

5. How AT&T chewed up, and spat out Net Neutrality

In an interview with Business Week in October 2005, Whitacre said he thought taking over BellSouth would be rejected by the FCC. He also made another memorable comment that began the process which culminated in the FCC’s approval in December.

There was another similar incident which involved a female politician whose name I cannot recall (possibly working alongside Thomas Barnett). A Web search on her name revealed some unflattering results, but at the time it was her decision to leave Intel alone, despite its many abuses, which raised many suspicions.

It is convenient and simple to one’s mind to just look at technical things (Linus Torvalds being an excellent example of this). However, the deeper one explores these issues, the more ‘political’ they turn out to be. The Microsoft/Novell deal had ‘political’ aspects as well and it remains important to keep an eye on this ball in order to understand the relationship. Just come to consider Novell’s role in helping Microsoft against antitrust regulators in the United States and Europe. Also consider Microsoft’s recent acquisition and control tactics, which manage to escape the FTC’s wrath through procedural loopholes.

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

A Single Comment

  1. SubSonica said,

    December 3, 2007 at 2:59 am

    Gravatar

    As read in linux.com:
    http://www.linux.com/articles/31250

    Denying that politics can play any part in Free Software is of course absurd. Politics is not confined to a few officials in suits, it is part of the fabric of life. When I consume goods, I tacitly accept that the companies involved in the production of those goods are acceptable to me, or rather that their practices are acceptable; when I use Free Software, I make a political statement about my thoughts on copyright law, software development methods, and perhaps a little of my ethics.

    Moreover, software development is directly and indirectly affected by political decisions that are external to the development community. If it were illegal to distribute software with restrictive licences, proprietary software would not exist; if everybody had to pay royalties to the holder of the patent for the progress bar, very little software would use the progress bar. In an extreme example, if my country were invaded and the occupying power banned me from using Free Software, I would no longer be able to use KDE.

    Free Software communities must therefore take political considerations seriously, just as they take technical considerations seriously. Some communities take political matters to heart, and define their community as much by their politics as by their technical achievements; other communities, meanwhile, have an unhealthy attitude, burying their heads in the sand and hoping the wind blows in a friendly way.

What Else is New


  1. Extending Linux With DRM, Azure and exFAT

    An insufficiently 'conservative' Linux ceases to be freedom-respecting



  2. Linux Foundation (LF) Now Dominated by Lots of Microsoft People and LF Chiefs Join Microsoft in Smearing GPL/Copyleft

    We continue to see additional evidence which serves towards reinforcing our view that the so-called 'Linux' Foundation is actually hostile towards many things that are associated with Linux (unlike those looking to exploit/hijack Linux for proprietary ends)



  3. Links 22/1/2020: Wayland 1.18 Alpha, ODF 1.3 Approved

    Links for the day



  4. IRC Proceedings: Tuesday, January 21, 2020

    IRC logs for Tuesday, January 21, 2020



  5. Poor Excuses for Granting Poor (and Often Illegal/Invalid) Patents

    A quick look at some of the latest examples of software patents advocacy (not by actual software professionals, obviously) and why it's deeply misguided (or guided solely by greedy law firms)



  6. A Simple Plan For a Universal Free Software Community

    "For software to be free as in freedom, we need more people to care personally about software freedom."



  7. Links 21/1/2020: Wine 5.0 and Red Hat Enterprise Linux 8.2 Beta

    Links for the day



  8. Startpage/System1 Almost Definitely Pay for People to Lie About Their Surveillance

    A longterm investigation suggests that there are forces in the debate that aren't objective and are being super evasive and dodgy; this typically happens only when somebody has much to hide



  9. The Internet is an Appalling Medium for News and It Has Only Gotten Worse

    Something ought to change in the way people gather and assess news; at the moment — as proper journalism runs out of steam (and budget) — things only deteriorate and quality suffers; this rapidly exacerbates as people come to rely on — and then relay — hearsay, not fact-checked bodies of work



  10. Media Reactions to the EPO Coming to Grips With Fake Patents That It Granted (Spoiler: the Media is Controlled by Lawyers of Monopolists and EPO Partners)

    Appalling quality of reporting and truly awful bias in the media, primarily owing to the fact that it is dominated/manned not by actual reporters but the firms looking to patent life itself; they use their lawyers and operatives who are literally funded by these lawyers (wearing "journalist" badges to mislead)



  11. Links 21/1/2020: EarlyOOM Fedora Decision and AMD Zen 3 Microcode

    Links for the day



  12. IRC Proceedings: Monday, January 20, 2020

    IRC logs for Monday, January 20, 2020



  13. Links 20/1/2020: MNT Reform, Linux 5.5 RC7, KMyMoney 5.0.8

    Links for the day



  14. Mansion of Pedophilia – Addendum: Accessing and Assessing Court Documents

    How anyone out there can do the job the media failed to do (after an apparently unprecedented arrest at the home of Bill Gates)



  15. Mansion of Pedophilia – Addendum: Progress on Police Request

    9 updates from the police department of Seattle but still nothing material/concrete, only promises and major delays



  16. IRC Proceedings: Sunday, January 19, 2020

    IRC logs for Sunday, January 19, 2020



  17. Mansion of Pedophilia – Part VIII: More Than 4 Months of Waiting for Police Department to Send Over the Files They Claim to Have an Issue Opening

    The police department (PD) of Seattle is unable to open its own files about arrest for pedophilia at Bill Gates' home; it has been unable to open these files for several months, it claims...



  18. Starting a GNU Replacement for GitHub, Possibly Based on GitLab

    "It might be easier if we start from the GitLab software," Stallman said



  19. European Commission Pushes for Even Greater Patent Maximalism Instead of Rationality, Patent Zealots' Site Cherry-Picks China as Whipping Boy

    Fear of China is being leveraged to promote an agenda of patent maximalists; the general idea they promote is that granting millions of low-quality patents is the only way to compete, even if in reality that merely handicaps the whole market



  20. CRISPR Patents Disallowed, But Where Are the Journalists?

    The narrative surrounding last week's decision against CRISPR patents may have been virtually monopolised by the litigation think tanks and law firms; it certainly feels like no journalism is left to rebut them, fact-check, and introspect



  21. Links 19/1/2020: Wine 5.0 RC6, Alpine 3.11.3

    Links for the day



  22. Judges Reject EPO Patents on Life as Constitutional Complaints Against the EPO Pile Up in Germany

    EPO judges throw out patents on life (CRISPR at least); there's now growing hope that they'll have the courage to do the same to patents on software



  23. IRC Proceedings: Saturday, January 18, 2020

    IRC logs for Saturday, January 18, 2020



  24. StartPage (System1) Found New Spin Allies. Some Have Been Offered StartPage Jobs. Some Might Already be Working for StartPage in Secret.

    Pro-StartPage voices appear to be paid (or have been promised pay) by StartPage; the key strategy of StartPage seems to be, attack and betray people's privacy while paying people in particular positions to pretend otherwise



  25. IRC Proceedings: Friday, January 17, 2020

    IRC logs for Friday, January 17, 2020



  26. Links 18/1/2020: Mir 1.7 and GNU Guile 3.0.0

    Links for the day



  27. IRC Proceedings: Thursday, January 16, 2020

    IRC logs for Thursday, January 16, 2020



  28. Links 16/1/2020: Mozilla Layoffs, PinePhone Braveheart Shipping, KDE Plasma 5.18 LTS Reaches Beta

    Links for the day



  29. Microsoft is a Market Leader in Lying and Corruption

    Microsoft is working hard to describe itself as the exact opposite of what it is and what it has been; ‘Internet rot’ helps a lot with this agenda, not to mention control of the media (the narrative)



  30. The European Patent Organisation Continues to 'Piss All Over' Separation of Powers

    The EPO continues to scatter invalid patents (IPs) that are European Patents (EPs) all over Europe and nobody can stop this, not even the judges of the EPO because they lack independence (by their very own admission)


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

Recent Posts