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


Financial Penalties Won’t Undo the Crimes (Microsoft Antitrust)

Posted in Antitrust, Europe, Microsoft at 12:26 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz


Summary: Critique of the “too little, too late” action that addresses Microsoft’s abuses against the Web

So Microsoft is engaging in anticompetitive behaviour again. A petition has been set up to protest UEFI restricted boot, but not many people are signing it because of low awareness. Something is clearly not working because Microsoft can do almost anything it wishes without facing consequences, at least not immediately. A better regulatory system is urgently needed; it’s the same in the financial sector.

As part of a story that was mentioned here recently, we wish to mention this summary of 4 sources about Microsoft antitrust:

Unnamed sources are saying that the EU plans to levy fines against Microsoft, perhaps before the end of March. The EU said Microsoft recently failed to comply with a settlement that required it to offer EU consumers a choice of browsers.

Foo Yun Chee with Reuters first broke the story, reporting, “EU competition regulators plan to fine Microsoft Corp before the end of March in a case tied to the U.S. software giant’s antitrust battle in Europe more than a decade ago, three people familiar with the matter said on Thursday…. ‘The Commission is planning to fine Microsoft before the Easter break,’ one of the sources said, adding that it is possible that procedural issues could push back the decision.”

All Things D’s John Paczkowski confirmed the report, writing, “And sources familiar with the matter have confirmed to AllThingsD that this is indeed the case at this time. No word yet on the size of the fine, but given EU Competition Commissioner Joaquin Almunia’s public threats over the misstep, penalties could be severe. Whatever they are, sources say the EC will likely announce them sometime in March.”

Generally speaking, purely financial (and belated) penalty is not the answer; they should send people to prison, prevent anticompetitive action when it happens, make remedy by forcing the firing of particular members of staff, etc. A writer in Forbes said, “Microsoft To Be Fined By The EU Again? And The Problem With Governments Being Able To Fine Companies” (no link on purpose).

He said: “Yes, we do need to have some means of stopping companies breaking the law and money seems the best way to do it.”

A more immediate penalty would have worked better. Many people lost their jobs when Microsoft did its crimes. They’ll never get justice.

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


  1. Needs Sunlight said,

    March 5, 2013 at 12:36 pm


    Here’s a largely symbolic effort:


    Remedial actions are always too late, coming after the harm. and usually too little. For anything to have an effect, it has to be proactive or else be really massive. About the only option in either case there at this point is just growing a pair and stop using M$ products, services and technologies. It’s not going to be pain-free. It does mean, in many cases, a clean sweep of staff in some departments if one wants to go after the source. M$ crap doesn’t buy and install itself.

  2. NotZed said,

    March 5, 2013 at 6:07 pm


    When fines are just against a company all it is is another business expense passed onto the customer. Unless it’s really big it will make no difference to a microsoft or intel – already they have outrageous margins from being monopolies and yet people still blow their wads on their junk.

    Dr. Roy Schestowitz Reply:

    The ‘free’ — as in deregulated — market sure is working. It boosts innovation, doesn’t it? All our products are made overpriced by patents and new competitors (entrants) are not allowed or cannot survive without hijacking government (through lobbyists and campaign funding).

    If corporations own the state or vice versa, then we may have fascism. It’s a tricky problem to get around or completely resolve. I suggested making the penalties and remedies more immediate; that’s what I came up with given that letting governments run companies (like many arms factories) is not a great idea, shows history.

    A good start would be to increase or actually *apply* tax law to large corporations and their owners; austerity is largely caused by their parasitic tax-free existence for decades.

  3. kozmcrae said,

    March 5, 2013 at 10:19 pm


    I used the link you provided to login and sign the petition. Just out of curiosity I checked to see if I could find the petition without the link. No go. It doesn’t show up on any search and it doesn’t show up on the 169 active petitions. If you don’t have a link to find it you’re out of luck. You won’t be able to sign it. By the way, it only needs 52 more signatures and it’s only been four days. That’s quite remarkable.

    Needs Sunlight Reply:

    Yeah, it’s hidden. Unfortunately you have the numbers flipped, it needs over 99,000 signatures to get anywhere. Sadly, too many people are jaded and cynical about both M$, the Department of Justice, and the Obama administration as a whole. That mean that few even try the petition. Even if it is only a symbolic effort, it is something that people need to try.

    Dr. Roy Schestowitz Reply:

    Every petition starts off with a few; we’ve begun spreading the link in some social networks.

    The FSF has a popular petition against UEFI (I think over 30,000 people signed it).

  4. kozmcrae said,

    March 7, 2013 at 12:37 am


    Ouch! I guess I saw what I wanted to see.

    I checked again and I still couldn’t find the petition without the link. I’ll try to spread it around but it needs to pick up steam fast if it’s going to get 100,000 signatures by March 31st.

What Else is New

  1. UPC Preparatory Committee Puts the Brakes on UPC Amid Brexit and Growing Uncertainty

    The Unified Patent Court (UPC) preparatory committee recognises that the UPC isn't going anywhere (any time soon) and false job advertisements -- or advertisements for jobs that will never exist -- are withdrawn

  2. Updates Regarding EPO and BoAC: Unrest and Injustice Carry on

    Some of the latest information which is publicly and privately available to us, in particular regarding the case of a suspended judge which represents unprecedented erosion of the appeal boards' independence (and hence lack of justice in the Organisation)

  3. EPO and the “Iberian Connection”: Patricia García-Escudero Márquez - Battistelli's Pet Chinchilla on the Boards of Appeal Committee?

    Why the Boards of Appeal Committee has begun showing prominent signs that it is anything but independent and capable of standing up to Battistelli (or his circle at the Office, which includes the “Iberian Connection")

  4. Links 23/10/2016: Alcatel's New Android Smartphones, Another Honorary Doctorate for Stallman

    Links for the day

  5. Open Letter Exposing the Farce Which Was Battistelli's 'Social Conference' Coinciding With Further (New) Attacks on EPO Staff Representatives

    A detailed letter reveals legitimate concerns expressed by staff representatives at the EPO ahead of the so-called Social Conference, in which we have highlighted severe factual flaws

  6. Translation of Latest Rant From French MP Philip Cordery About Benoît Battistelli's Abuses at the EPO

    Philip Cordery crosses horns with Benoît Battistelli, who has become a source of embarrassment for France with his autocratic tendencies and misguided policies that rapidly ruin the European Patent Office (EPO)

  7. Battistelli-Commissioned PwC ‘Study’: Leaked Document Shows PwC's Dishonesty and Misrepresentation of EPO Staff

    An in-depth analysis (but not comprehensive, just preliminary) of the so-called 'study' from PwC, which basically did what it was paid for (pay to say)

  8. Links 22/10/2016: Deus Ex for GNU/Linux, Global DDoS (DNS)

    Links for the day

  9. Battistelli-Commissioned PwC ‘Study’: Survey Comparison Shows Serious Deterioration and Efforts by PwC to Disguise the Truth

    The latest output from PwC turns out to be even worse than initially thought, indicating that not only did it find a degradation in the EPO but also attempted to hide/obscure it

  10. EPO Teaser - The "Iberian Connection" - Some Photos of García-Escudero and His Royal/Government Connections

    A look at the undeniably close connections between Mr. García-Escudero and the most powerful people in Spain

  11. Disruption to Site's Service

    A technical note about why Techrights has not been publishing many articles recently

  12. Links 21/10/2016: MPV 0.21, Mad Max for GNU/Linux

    Links for the day

  13. EPO Caricature: Battistelli's High Five

    Another cartoon about the sad state of the EPO

  14. Battistelli Ruins Not Only the EPO But Also the Whole of Europe By Ushering in Software Patents That Patent Trolls Love So Much

    Battistelli's bad leadership at the EPO threatens to bring to Europe all the ills and menaces of the patent system in the United States

  15. EPO Spokesman Lies to IP Watch in Order to Save Face and Save the King (Battistelli)

    Rewriting history (revisionism) regarding Battistelli and what was demanded amidst abusive behaviour from him

  16. Unitary Patent (UPC) is Dead, But 'Managing IP' and Selfish Patent Law Firms Still Try to Resurrect It

    The latest attempts to shore up the Unitary (or Unified) Patent Court and who's behind it other than the usual suspects

  17. Links 20/10/2016: Linux 4.10 Preview, ONF and ON.Labs to Merge

    Links for the day

  18. Battistelli-Commissioned PwC 'Study': The Raw Outcome Shows Distortion of the Facts at the EPO's Notorious 'Social Conference'

    Results of the Staff Survey carried out by PwC, in order to provide some propaganda for Battistelli's expensive Social Conference

  19. Addendum: EPO's Alberto Casado Cerviño, WIPO's Francis Gurry, and EUIPO's Archambeau

    Photos taken as part of an IP event which took place in Riga (Latvia) in March 2015

  20. Worrisome Connections Between EPO VP2 Alberto Casado Cerviño and Patricia García-Escudero Márquez

    Exploring the potential conflicts of interests implicating the EPO's Boards of Appeal Committee

  21. Site's Infrastructure Under Attack and Upgrades Ahead of Major New Publications

    Protections for the Web site have been improved and capacity increased in order to avoid or at least prepare for another week of abusive/spam traffic

  22. Team Battistelli's Conspiracy Theory: SUEPO is Behind Everything, EPO Management is Trying to Tell the Media

    Attempts to blame SUEPO, the staff union of the EPO, even though SUEPO has nothing to do with articles that are critical of the EPO while many thousands of EPO employees are disgruntled

  23. Links 19/10/2016: Canonical Livepatch Service, Plasma Plans

    Links for the day

  24. The 'Sarah Sharps' of Microsoft: Not the Kind of Scandal the Media Cares Enough to Write About

    Another example of the large (industrial) scale of sexual discrimination at Microsoft -- a company that tries to advertise itself as diverse or tolerant and stigmatise Free/Open Source software (FOSS) as intolerant and/or not diverse

  25. EPO Caricature: EQE Questions

    The latest EPO cartoon, this time about European qualifying examination (EQE)

  26. The Long History or Seeds of Control by Fear and Punishment at the EPO

    The latest hogwash from Team Battistelli (Pinocchio), the latest instance of software patents promotion by EPO Principal Director, and an old (decade-old) nugget of information from the Forum for Principal Directors

  27. Subject of the European Patent Office's Abuses Raised in European Parliament by Ulrike Müller (ALDE)

    A local copy of a bunch of questions asked less than a month ago by Ulrike Müller at the European Parliament, regarding the unacceptable state of affairs at the European Patent Office (EPO)

  28. French Article About the EPO "Crisis"

    Le Monde, which covered EPO suicides and nervous breakdowns a year and a half ago, revisits the subject

  29. Battistelli Wants Us to Believe a Patent Office in a Freefall (EPO) is “Stronger and More Sustainable”

    Still in denial (or self-deluding for self indulgence), Battistelli writes about the EPO as though everything is rosy and people are happy

  30. Leaked Documents Shed More Light on What Happened to Alison Brimelow and How Battistelli Rose to Power

    How Battistelli's (almost) all-male (and all-white, mostly French) management came into being, not too long after Ms Alison Brimelow got elbowed out the Office


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