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EU Court Upholds Microsoft Antitrust Fines 126

Posted by Unknown Lamer
from the chump-change dept.
a_n_d_e_r_s writes "The ongoing saga of Microsoft's misuse of their dominant position in the EU marketplace to block competitors may be finally over, with the fine set to 860 million euros (just over 1 billion dollars). In 2004 Microsoft was ordered to provide certain information to competitors but failed to do so and was given an hefty fine. Now the EU General Court in Luxembourg has upheld the EU Commission decision and ruled against Microsoft." This is a minor reduction (4.3%) of the original fine because of a minor technicality. Microsoft, naturally, is unhappy with the result.
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EU Court Upholds Microsoft Antitrust Fines

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  • EU bailout (Score:2, Funny)

    by pointyhat (2649443)
    So Microsoft are running the EU bailout now?
    • by Anonymous Coward

      Sadly the amount of money the EU is p*ssing away/conjuring into existance at the moment would bankrupt Microsoft, Apple, IBM and Google combined.

      **Sigh**

      • Hey Greece is a worthy investment. Without them we wouldn't have nearly enough people to cause riots, burn things and retire at the age of 40 without them
    • No, Germany is.

    • by Dunbal (464142) *
      No because they haven't actually paid any of the fines. Why should they? Apparently there are no consequences to having a judgement against you and you can just not pay for as long as you like while continuing to do "business as usual" after some minor changes to the software bundle. You could say they are contributing to the European financial crisis though.
    • by Luckyo (1726890)

      Only a few orders of magnitude off there champ. Hint: here on slashdot people typically understand math beyond "what's a million and how is different from bazillion?"

  • by hcs_$reboot (1536101) on Wednesday June 27, 2012 @08:55AM (#40466055)
    Not sure about that. Since 2004 they sold at least a billion pricey products ; that makes a pretty juicy ROI.
    • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

      by Joce640k (829181)

      Mod parent up. It's a couple of month's profit for Microsoft. Spread it over eight years and it's not a bad investment.

    • by cgenman (325138) on Wednesday June 27, 2012 @09:40AM (#40466559) Homepage

      Microsoft has to report that they're unhappy with the result. They have to whine and complain. If they didn't, it wouldn't be seen as sufficient punishment.

    • by gstrickler (920733) on Wednesday June 27, 2012 @09:42AM (#40466579)

      Microsoft's competitors and consumers aren't too happy with the result either. I'm sure they would have preferred that MS not have engaged in such practices in the first place.

  • by Anonymous Coward

    ...here in the United Kingdom both central and local government will consider this ruling and act in the manner which they consider appropriate;
      So they will make absolutely no effort consider alternative suppliers and reward Microsoft with more lucrative contracts for software and services.

  • Now they need to go after them for secure boot UEFI
    • Re:secure boot uefi (Score:4, Interesting)

      by SuricouRaven (1897204) on Wednesday June 27, 2012 @09:30AM (#40466421)
      And when the legal proceeding complete in about 2026, once Microsoft have successfully used Secure Boot to destroy all potential competition in the desktop space and profited by many tens of billions of euros, they can get another billion-euro fine for it.
    • Re:secure boot uefi (Score:5, Interesting)

      by KingMotley (944240) on Wednesday June 27, 2012 @10:43AM (#40467307) Journal

      UEFI isn't a Microsoft technology, but feel free to try and prove that an open consortium has a monopoly and abused it somehow.

      • by Microlith (54737)

        UEFI is full of Wintel-isms, and Microsoft is right along Intel at the top of the stack in terms of people making design decisions with respect to how UEFI functions. Microsoft has shown it is willing to abuse its position (or the positions of others) in consortiums and standards bodies to get their way (see the OOXML debacle.)

        I wouldn't be surprised in the slightest to find out that they leveraged their position to muck up the key management process in UEFI explicitly so that it functions the way we curren

  • Good to see (Score:4, Interesting)

    by StillNeedMoreCoffee (123989) on Wednesday June 27, 2012 @10:08AM (#40466885)

    Europe acting on anti-trust type of actions on big companies. I remember a time when the U.S. did that and we had decades of prosperity. Ah the good old prosperous days of the 50's and 60's with 90% top tax rate.

    • Ah the good old prosperous days of the 50's and 60's with 90% top tax rate.

      Yeah, shame that John Kennedy had to go and spoil that by lowering taxes, wasn't it?

      • Re:Good to see (Score:4, Interesting)

        by RazorSharp (1418697) on Wednesday June 27, 2012 @11:26AM (#40467861)

        Anytime a U.S. president gets shot he becomes sainted and we refuse to acknowledge the horrible things he's done. Getting shot is like automatic sainthood for a U.S. President (thank God Reagan survived his assassination attempt - imagine that moron as a martyr).

        Kennedy got us involved in Vietnam. Lincoln was personally responsible for more American deaths than any person/country/army. No one (aside from history buffs) knows much about McKinley or Garfield but they have a surprising amount of buildings and whatnot named after them for do-nothing presidents.

        • by sjames (1099)

          knows much about McKinley or Garfield but they have a surprising amount of buildings and whatnot named after them for do-nothing presidents.

          Wasn't Garfield the one who loved lasagna?

          Considering the massive fuck-ups we've seen out of the office of the President, perhaps managing to get through an entire term in office without any notable scandals is in itself, praiseworthy?

  • by Last_Available_Usern (756093) on Wednesday June 27, 2012 @10:35AM (#40467213)
    This is not a trivial sum. Who gets it?
  • Can anyone point me to something indicating what information the EU feels Microsoft should have provided but did not provide? (or information competitors of Microsoft believe Microsoft should have provided but did not provide?)

    The spec documents at http://msdn.microsoft.com/en-us/library/dd208104(v=prot.10) [microsoft.com] seem to cover a lot of the things that competitors might want access to so whats missing?

  • When Microsoft will increase the software licensing fees for EU organizations.......

  • UEFI boot comes to mind, just off the top of my head.

  • They better make them pay up asap or don't allow them to do business in the EU.
  • ...Microsoft is still unlikely to pay the reduced fine. A Microsoft spokesman was quoted as saying "Awww, the widdle EU antitrust court thinks it can fine us. Isn't that just precious?"

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