07.02.10

Gemini version available ♊︎

Microsoft Under Pressure in Europe

Posted in Antitrust, Europe, Microsoft at 11:32 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Bolzano streets

Summary: Bolzano is scrutinised for locking out competition of Microsoft; the reasoning for browser choice ballot in Europe is shown more clearly

SEVERAL DAYS ago we wrote about the latest tender-related story from France. There isn’t so much leeway for Microsoft to just sign boiler room deals with people who consult neither the public nor Microsoft’s competitors. Why is it not working for Microsoft anymore? Because the public begins to understand and get involved, sometimes even suing the government. To give the example of Switzerland:

  1. Microsoft Sued Over Its Corruption in Switzerland, Microsoft Debt Revisited
  2. Can the United Kingdom and Hungary Still be Sued for Excluding Free Software?
  3. 3 New Counts of Antitrust Violation by Microsoft?
  4. Is Microsoft Breaking the Law in Switzerland Too?
  5. Microsoft Uses Lobbyists to Attack Holland’s Migration to Free Software and Sort of Bribes South African Teachers Who Use Windows
  6. ZDNet/eWeek Ruins Peter Judge’s Good Article by Attacking Red Hat When Microsoft Does the Crime
  7. Week of Microsoft Government Affairs: a Look Back, a Look Ahead
  8. Lawsuit Against Microsoft/Switzerland Succeeds So Far, More Countries/Companies Should Follow Suit
  9. Latest Reports on Microsoft Bulk Deals Being Blocked in Switzerland, New Zealand
  10. Swiss Government and Federal Computer Weekly: Why the Hostility Towards Free Software?
  11. Switzerland and the UK Under Fire for Perpetual Microsoft Engagements
  12. Lawsuit Over Alleged Microsoft Corruption in Switzerland Escalates to Federal Court

Another important story/issue which was mentioned before (in this separate post) has led to an awakening to the fact that Microsoft is a threat to Europe’s control of its own technology. And now there’s this gentle protest from the FSFE:

on 25 May 2010 the regional government authority of Bolzano decided to spend 2.2 million EUR over the next three years to renew software licenses from Microsoft Ireland, and to buy additional licenses. All this was done without a public call for tender, making it impossible for competing suppliers of similar software to make offers of their own.

We ask you to rethink this decision. It will influence your strategic position over a much longer time frame than the three years for which the licenses will last.

The European Commission’s vice president Neelie Kroes said on June 13 2010 in Brussels:

“Many authorities have found themselves unintentionally locked into proprietary technology for decades. After a certain point that original choice becomes so ingrained that alternatives risk being systematically ignored, no matter what the potential benefits. This is a waste of public money that most public bodies can no longer afford.”

With your decision to buy Microsoft Sharepoint and Microsoft Office communication server software without evaluating Free Software alternatives you will increase your organisation’s dependence on Microsoft. You will take your IT systems further down the one-way street of proprietary formats and proprietary software, locking in your organisation’s own data along with that of the citizens of Bolzano.

Bolzano is in Italy where Microsoft has a history of allegedly corrupt tender 'wins'.

Microsoft ought to be careful because as the European Commission has proven, it can and will take action. One example of this action is the Web browsers ballot which Microsoft was compelled to implement (or face heavy fines). Microsoft tried to dodge this one repeatedly, as we explained in:

  1. Browser Ballot Critique
  2. Microsoft’s Fake “Choice” Campaign is Back
  3. Microsoft Claimed to be Cheating in Web Browsers Ballot
  4. Microsoft Loses Impact in the Web Despite Unfair Ballot Placements
  5. Given Choice, Customers Reject Microsoft
  6. Microsoft is Still Cheating in Browser Ballot — Claim
  7. The Microsoft Who Cried “Wolf!”

The ‘Microsoft press’ has just published this article about why “Microsoft Is Busting Its Own ‘The Browser Is Part of the OS’ Myth”

This column is not going to revisit the oft-debated question of whether Internet Explorer really is part of Windows. That matter is ancient history, a relic of the U.S. Department of Justice versus Microsoft trial that ended more than a decade ago. Authorities allowed Microsoft to continue to bundle IE with every copy of Windows sold.

Nor am I going to dwell on the more-recent European antitrust case that revolved around the same topic. That case, of course, ended with Microsoft agreeing to provide European Union users with a “browser ballot,” which makes explicit the fact that they have a choice of browsers.

Indeed. And if Microsoft is not careful, more antitrust action may be coming its way. As Microsoft found out in Quebec last month [1, 2, 3], it is not above the law.

Share in other sites/networks: These icons link to social bookmarking sites where readers can share and discover new web pages.
  • Reddit
  • email

Decor ᶃ Gemini Space

Below is a Web proxy. We recommend getting a Gemini client/browser.

Black/white/grey bullet button This post is also available in Gemini over at this address (requires a Gemini client/browser to open).

Decor ✐ Cross-references

Black/white/grey bullet button Pages that cross-reference this one, if any exist, are listed below or will be listed below over time.

Decor ▢ Respond and Discuss

Black/white/grey bullet button If you liked this post, consider subscribing to the RSS feed or join us now at the IRC channels.

5 Comments

  1. Needs Sunlight said,

    July 2, 2010 at 2:26 pm

    Gravatar

    The purpose of the browser ballot had nothing positive to do with choice, no matter what the user picks, he is still stuck with MSIE.

    Choices on the browser ballot:

    MSIE + Chrome
    MSIE + Opera
    MSIE + Firefox

    No, the whole browser ballot is a red herring, a successful one, to take the attention off the anti-trust case.

    twitter Reply:

    True, browser wars are a distraction. The choice is Windows + a choice of browser preferences which may be undone with the next Windows Update. No real choice is given to customers by OEMs and Vendors, so everyone pays the Windows tax unless they buy a used computer. A few vendors are jumping to meet demand for quality software but Microsoft makes sure that everything costs more than Windows by manipulating hardware OEMs and retailers.

    Some good news is that South Korea has dumped it’s long standing and obnoxious Active X requirement for financial transactions.

    Dr. Roy Schestowitz Reply:

    The FSF’s response to this is noteworthy; they want to unbundle the OS.

  2. crabby said,

    July 4, 2010 at 12:18 pm

    Gravatar

    I never understood that M$ was so connected to various guv’s around the world. I’m going to start my own revolt against M$ at the local Primary School. I’d love to see people rise up against the scourge of Corporate Tyranny that some hyper-aggressive corporates have foisted on us and our Children. May the two Steve’s (Ballmer and Jobs) Companies burn!!

DecorWhat Else is New


  1. Microsoft Corporation is Still Protecting a Violent Criminal Who Assaults Women (Employing Him as Manager, Protecting Him From Arrest, Paying Him a Salary)

    Ahead of court and amid arrest warrant Microsoft still deems this a good idea? Then again, this same company works for ICE, helping to kidnap babies from their mothers...



  2. Links 8/12/2021: Linux 5.15.7 Out, Linux Mint 20.3 is Near

    Links for the day



  3. Links 8/12/2021: Zorin OS 16 Milestone and Calculate Linux 22 Released; Kubernetes 1.23

    Links for the day



  4. A Call for Sources and Whistleblowers From Microsoft's GitHub

    Remarks on our publications from this morning and a call for more leakers and whistleblowers, who know GitHub better than anybody else (including lots of fools who still outsource all of their hard labour to Microsoft through GitHub)



  5. [Teaser] Rape is Not a Joke

    Having just uploaded a police report, we’re starting to move the ongoing series to the next phase, which will still be — for the most part — weekly installments on Mondays (for months to come)



  6. [Teaser] Meet Microsoft’s Chief Architect of GitHub Copilot, Balabhadra (Alex) Graveley (Updated)

    Alex Graveley, a serial abuser, has been protected by Microsoft; what does that say about Microsoft and about Nat Friedman, GitHub’s CEO whom Alex considers his "best friend"? Stay tuned as we have plenty more to show



  7. IRC Proceedings: Tuesday, December 07, 2021

    IRC logs for Tuesday, December 07, 2021



  8. Links 8/12/2021: FreeBSD 12.3, EasyOS 3.1.13, and WordPress 5.9 Beta 2

    Links for the day



  9. [Meme] EU Assurances

    The EPO‘s staff cannot be blamed for losing patience as elected public representatives completely fail to do their job (with few exceptions)



  10. Clare Daly (GUE/NGL) Does What Every Public Official in Europe Should Have Done About EPO Shenanigans

    There’s another (new) push to hold the EPO accountable, seeing that the overseers clearly do not do their job and instead cover up the abuses



  11. Links 7/12/2021: Firefox 96 Beta and Fedora 37 Abandons ARMv7

    Links for the day



  12. Links 7/12/2021: Plasma Mobile Gear 21.12 and Tails 4.25

    Links for the day



  13. All IRC Logs Now Available as GemText Over Gemini Protocol

    Today we've completed the transition from plain text over gemini:// to GemText over gemini:// for IRC logs



  14. IRC Proceedings: Monday, December 06, 2021

    IRC logs for Monday, December 06, 2021



  15. [Meme] Rowing to the Bottom of the Ocean

    The EPO‘s Steve Rowan (VP1) is failing EPO staff and sort of “firing” workers during times of crisis (not at all a crisis to the EPO’s coffers)



  16. EPO Gradually Reduced to 'Fee Collection Agency' Which Eliminates Its Very Own Staff

    Mr. Redundancies and Mr. Cloud are outsourcing EPO jobs to Microsoft and Serco as if the EPO is an American corporation, providing no comfort to long-serving EPO staff



  17. Linux Foundation 2021 Annual Report Made on an Apple Mac Using Proprietary Software

    Yes, you’re reading this correctly. They still reject both “Linux” and “Open Source” (no dogfooding). This annual report is badly compressed; each page of the PDF is, on average, almost a megabyte in size (58.8 MB for a report of this scale is unreasonable and discriminates against people in countries with slow Internet connections); notice how they’re milking the brand in the first page (straight after the cover page, the 1991 ‘creation myth’, ignoring GNU); remember that this foundation is named after a trademark which is not even its own!



  18. Links 7/12/2021: OpenIndiana Hipster 2021.10 and AppStream 0.15

    Links for the day



  19. Microsoft “Defender” Pretender Attacks Random Software That Uses NSIS for installation; “Super Duper Secure Mode” for Edge is a Laugh

    Guest post by Ryan, reprinted with permission



  20. Links 6/12/2021: LibreOffice Maintenance Releases, Firefox 95 Finalised

    Links for the day



  21. “Wintel” “Secure” uEFI Firmware Used to Store Persistent Malware, and Security Theater Boot is Worthless

    Guest post by Ryan, reprinted with permission



  22. No Linux Foundation IRS Disclosures Since 2018

    The publicly-available records or IRS information about the Linux Foundation is suspiciously behind; compared to other organisations with a "tax-exempt" status the Linux Foundation is one year behind already



  23. Jim Zemlin Has Deleted All of His Tweets

    The Linux Foundation‘s Jim Zemlin seems to have become rather publicity-shy (screenshots above are self-explanatory; latest snapshot), but years ago he could not contain his excitement about Microsoft, which he said was "loved" by what it was attacking. Days ago it became apparent that Microsoft’s patent troll is still attacking Linux with patents and Zemlin’s decision to appoint Microsoft as the At-Large Director (in effect bossing Linus Torvalds) at the ‘Linux’ Foundation’s Board of Directors is already backfiring. She not only gets her whole salary from Microsoft but also allegedly protects sexual predators who assault women… by hiring them despite repeated warnings; if the leadership of the ‘Linux’ Foundation protects sexual predators who strangle women (even paying them a salary and giving them management positions), how can the ‘Linux’ Foundation ever claim to represent inclusion and diversity?



  24. Microsoft GitHub Exposé — Part IX — Microsoft's Chief Architect of GitHub Copilot Sought to be Arrested One Day After Techrights Article About Him

    Balabhadra (Alex) Graveley has warrant for his arrest, albeit only after a lot of harm and damage had already been done (to multiple people) and Microsoft started paying him



  25. The Committee on Patent Law (PLC) Informed About Overlooked Issues “Which Might Have a Bearing on the Validity of EPO Patents.”

    In a publication circulated or prepared last week the Central Staff Committee (CSC) of the EPO explains a situation never explored in so-called 'media' (the very little that's left of it)



  26. Links 6/12/2021: HowTos and Patents

    Links for the day



  27. IRC Proceedings: Sunday, December 05, 2021

    IRC logs for Sunday, December 05, 2021



  28. Gemini Space/Protocol: Taking IRC Logs to the Next Level

    Tonight we begin the migration to GemText for our daily IRC logs, having already made them available over gemini://



  29. Links 6/12/2021: Gnuastro 0.16 and Linux 5.16 RC4

    Links for the day



  30. Links 5/12/2021: Touchpad Gestures in XWayland

    Links for the day


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