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06.18.08

Dark Day for Microsoft: Director Steps Down, Possible Bans in EU

Posted in Antitrust, Bill Gates, Europe, Microsoft at 3:14 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

It can be quite safely assumed that readers of this Web site are hardly fans of Microsoft, so after some disappointing news and frustrating analysis we are pleased to show that Microsoft is indeed sinking deeper in the mud. One symbolic development will accompany the departure of Bill Gates. Its Board of Directors is now down to 9.

Microsoft Director Jon Shirley Won’t Seek Re-Election

[...]

He stayed on the board after stepping down from the executive ranks in 1990.

More significant is the following news report that we have been anticipating.

EU Says Governments Could Bar Microsoft From Bidding

Governments contracting IT work could conclude that Microsoft’s antitrust history constitutes “grave professional misconduct” and ban the company, according to the European Commission.

Bad behaviour might not pay off after all.

“If you flee the rules, you will be caught. And it will cost you dearly.”

Neelie Kroes (about Microsoft), February 27th, 2008

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5 Comments

  1. Penny Lemon said,

    June 18, 2008 at 5:21 am

    Gravatar

    Roy – you forgot to post the second parragraph of that same article.

    “But the Commission said in a statement that Microsoft can’t be banned from competing for government IT projects because of the fines that have been levied against it.”

  2. Roy Schestowitz said,

    June 18, 2008 at 5:32 am

    Gravatar

    Yes, absolutely. We discussed this in IRC before I posted this here.


    <schestowitz> The good news keeps coming today. http://www.pcworld.com/businesscenter/article/147175/eu_says_governments_could_bar_microsoft_from_bidding.html (EU Says Governments Could Bar Microsoft From Bidding)
    <kentma> Now that’s a major step forward in the anti-corruption crusade.
    <kentma> Hmm, just upgraded to latest firefox and can’t seem to put a url in :-)
    <PetoKraus> :D
    * mark_antony_kent has quit (Read error: 110 (Connection timed out))
    <schestowitz> Really? In the address bar?
    <schestowitz> Well, I’ll just post it in BN.com
    <tessier> But WILL they bar MS from bidding?
    <schestowitz> Well, the important thing is that the proposal was not dismissed, for starters.
    <schestowitz> I’ll post something for context in BN.com. This goes a couple of months back, so needs to be seen in the right context…


    Also FTA:

    ”But the contracting authority is entitled to determine what constitutes “grave professional misconduct,” the Commission said.’

    IANAL, but it seems important as a precedence and a green light.

  3. PitaGuy said,

    June 18, 2008 at 6:25 am

    Gravatar

    how long can they abuse the system…OOXML was just so corrupted. I have never seen anything or anyone going so low just to win votes in such a high standing international organization….agreed it happens at local level to some extent …but ISO has never seen anything like this before…come on microsoft…ISO ..that too at such levels…

    We know that you have abused a lot of other standards (html, javascript…) for years. You have lost all shame.

    ballmer/bill gates himself called up a lot of high standing officials of international countries and asked them to votes in MS favour in return of free copies of vista !!! how sick can this get !

  4. Roy Schestowitz said,

    June 18, 2008 at 9:31 am

    Gravatar

    Okay, now this new report sings a different tune:

    http://www.heise.de/english/newsticker/news/109617/from/rss09
    ( European Commission won’t exclude Microsoft from procurement procedures )

    The EC substantiated its decision by saying that the directive provides for the possibility of exclusion, but does not make it obligatory.

    Perhaps it’s better than nothing. It’s a semi-endorsement but not a win.

  5. Slated said,

    June 19, 2008 at 4:05 am

    Gravatar

    There’s no contradiction, and indeed this is fantastic news.

    The conclusion is that governments are within their rights to interpret Microsoft’s previous criminal behaviour as “grave professional misconduct”, and thus use that as a legitimate reason for precluding them from being eligible to bid for contracts. However they conceded that Microsoft are not automatically banned merely because they were found guilty.

    IOW it is at the discretion of each respective government to decide, but they would be entitled to ban Microsoft if they chose to.

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