Friday, June 12, 2009

Extortion of Microsoft by the EU

As much as many people dislike Microsoft, they should dislike the EU's extortion committee even more. First they have been fining Microsoft many millions of dollars a year for having software that runs on 90% of computers. Microsoft in turn passes that cost on to EU consumers or other country consumers and still makes boatloads of money because 90% of computers run Windows. Anyone that can see through the cloud of BS knows that this is no different than the mafia robbing you and then asking you to pay them for protection.

EU Extortion

Microsoft said Thursday that it would remove its Internet Explorer browser -- and not include any alternatives -- in the Windows 7 software it will sell from Oct. 22 in Europe to soothe EU antitrust concerns.

The company is trying to avoid new EU fines, on top of a previous euro1.7 billion fine, after being earlier charged with unfairly using its operating system monopoly to squeeze into other software markets.

But the European Commission said it preferred to see consumers offered a choice of browser, "not that Windows would be supplied without a browser at all."

"Rather than more choice, Microsoft seems to have chosen to provide less," it said in a statement late Thursday.

It will soon decide whether Microsoft had violated EU antitrust law since 1996 by tying the browser to its ubiquitous Windows operating system which is installed on most of the world's desktop computers.

A "must carry" option that would offer several browsers was a better option, the EU executive suggested, because "consumers should be provided with a genuine choice of browsers" on the software that manufacturers install on computers.

It said Microsoft's solution would give no choice to the 5 percent of consumers who buy Windows software in a stand-alone pack, as opposed to pre-installed on a computer. Microsoft said it will give PC users who want the browser a way to obtain it.

So Microsoft complies with the "law" and takes out IE7, but offers no competitor's browser. Now the EU extortion ring wants MSFT to install competitor's browsers? How insane is that? Only a council of bureaucrats is that stupid.

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