12.08.10

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ICOMP is Another Microsoft Drone Like TurboHercules

Posted in Antitrust, Google, IBM, Microsoft at 2:13 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Pigeon hawk

Summary: Microsoft is harassing Google through yet another proxy and IBM responds to the news shortly after realising that TurboHercules is indeed partly owned by Microsoft

Microsoft is not interested in improving or creating a reputation. It does not seem to mind being viewed as a malicious and corrupt company which engages never in fair competition. A few days ago we wrote about 'Consumer' 'Watchdog' right after we had shown that Microsoft was funding and then using many parties to cause antitrust trouble for Google in Europe. Microsoft has been doing to same to IBM and Oracle, as we covered here just recently (there are many examples).

“Microsoft has been funding an organisation seemingly set up to make trouble for the search giant” says the summary of this new article which explains what ICOMP is about:

But a key player in all of this that you might not have heard of is the Brussels-based “Initiative for a Competitive Online Marketplace”, or ICOMP, which has been lobbying for an antitrust investigation. ICOMP is a organisation whose sole purpose appears to be to attack Google: it was set up to protest against Google’s DoubleClick acquisition and has spent the last few years churning out blog posts slamming the search giant and approaching journalists out of the blue with carefully primed stories. Why does this matter? Because ICOMP is almost entirely funded – and not always wholly transparently – by Microsoft, one of Google’s main competitors in search.

[...]

That last message arrived after I had spoken at length to Jack Evans, Microsoft’s Director of Public Relations (Legal and Policy) on the telephone about ICOMP. Although ICOMP’s reports and website do state that the initiative is “funded by member contributions as well as sponsorship from Microsoft”, until last week it was frequently omitting that information from its emails to journalists. Nor does the statement make clear that Microsoft is responsible for the majority of ICOMP’s money: Microsoft is ICOMP’s sole trustee and underwrites its funding – a fact confirmed by this PDF residing on ICOMP’s own website. The document states that Microsoft, as trustee, both selects ICOMP’s directors and guarantees its debts.

IBM’s Bob Sutor wrote about it: “More about Microsoft pulling the strings from behind the scenes to fight Google” (and this got repeated by a lot of people, obviously).

“So MSFT is behind Google’s, is behind IBM’s, is behind Oracle’s troubles in EU, what can go wrong?”
      –Carlo Piana
Yes obviously, IBM suffers from the very same dirty tricks from Microsoft, which more recently involved TurboHercules and T3. Microsoft now owns a stake in both companies, but it wasn’t quite so obvious when they filed complaints against IBM (these too led to an antitrust investigation in the EU). Over in Identica, Carlo Piana wrote in response to Sutor’s tweet: “So MSFT is behind Google’s, is behind IBM’s, is behind Oracle’s troubles in EU, what can go wrong?”

Here is another new article about Microsoft’s payment to TurboHercules. Those who believe that Microsoft has changed must also look at what Microsoft is doing with software patents right now.

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