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02.25.08

Possibly Another Microsoft Antitrust Over Abuse of Yahoo, Market; Then Comes Dark (Silver) Light

Posted in America, Antitrust, Europe, Free/Libre Software, Microsoft, Open XML at 3:03 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

It has only been weeks since the last antitrust investigation was launched to study Microsoft's abuses. It was Microsoft’s abuses of ISO in Europe in particular that got the wrath of Vinje et al. He also studies Silverlight, which is seen as an offensive new technology that is scarcely understood. For more information, see [1, 2, 3, 4, 5].

As we indicated in recent digests of news, Yahoo has a proxy war going on against it. That is just how far Microsoft is willing to go and this war seems to have already begun based on the fact that Yahoo was sued by some shareholders. The news came from Associated Press over the weekend and it’s hardly surprising. [cre 2004 Lawsuits by proxy is one of Microsoft's proven masteries].

At the moment, Congresswoman Lofgren starts speaking about an antitrust to-be over Microsoft’s aggressive wooing (some would say “violent rape”) of Yahoo.

Signs that the deal would face scrutiny are already apparent. For example, Sen. Herb Kohl, a Wisconsin Democrat and chairman of a Senate antitrust panel, has said that his subcommittee expects to hold hearings on implications of the deal should Yahoo accept Microsoft’s offer.

“To Microsoft, ownership of Yahoo would mean a great deal of ownership of Web space, assets and properties, through which is can spread Silverlight.”This article concentrates on privacy implications, but let’s not forget that Microsoft wants to render (X)HTML obsolete and replace all that openness with proprietary Microsoft software that goes by the pacifying name Silverlight. To Google, which relies on its ability to index information which is stored in open formats (notably HTML) this is more than just disturbing. Google’s co-founder called it "unnerving" the other day.

To Microsoft, ownership of Yahoo would mean a great deal of ownership of Web space, assets and properties, through which is can spread Silverlight. It is a response to LAMP and Ajax in particular, not just Adobe Flash which is bad also. Remember the recent dumping of lockinware. There is a strong push for Silverlight. With Yahoo, Microsoft can do a lot of damage. I wrote about it in this article which made the front page of Slashdot at the time.

Last night in Groklaw, a new interview was published. Tristan Nitot of Mozilla spoke about Silverlight, but only briefly.

Q: Now, tell me, is support for Microsoft Silverlight coming to Firefox anytime soon? Why or why not?

Tristan Nitot: [laughter] Oh, my God. Ah…. That’s a good one. (laughter) It’s very, very unlikely that Firefox will support Silverlight anytime soon. At least if I’m alive. [laughter]

This is not the first time that Tristan Nitot expresses concerns over Silverlight. We wrote more extensively about his views in the past.

Yesterday we mentioned an article from Brian, editor of LinuxToday. It makes it clearer that people begin to see the Big Stack and OOXML’s role within its context. it’s a big issue for FOSS. Huge issue even, but let it not incite panic because regulators both the United States and Europe took notice of Silverlight’s dark plans, among other things.

Come to consider other accompanying and inter-integrated components like SharePoint, Exchange Server, XPS, HD, OOXML, and XAML (Silverlight). Call it Lockin 2.0. The open fabric of the Web is at risk due to the recent Silverlight deal with the Library of Congress, which isn’t quite far from what you already find in the British Library. The dishonest BBC seems to have considered it too at one stage. Speak out now. Intercept Silverlight before it’s widespread.

Bad Silverlight

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