WideOpenNews/The Register: How the Government Plans to Tie Down the Microsoft Monster

Key points of the Proposed Final Judgement: cleanly
separated companies, open documentation, and no funny

“The conduct remedies turn out to be tough and fairly
comprehensive. There are interim measures while the businesses are
being separated that effectively prevent Microsoft getting up to
any hanky panky. For the first time, the businesses will be
required to play fair and make technical information such as APIs
and interface details available to everybody at the same time.”

“Recriminations and revenge against those who have dared to give
evidence against Microsoft during the trial, or to use competing
products, will not be allowed. Microsoft will be unable to use its
power to enforce a pattern of behaviour on vendors because it will
not be allowed to discriminate between vendors, or use any of the
tricks that emerged during the trial. This is one of the most
important provisions of the filing, because it effectively removes
Microsoft’s ability to blackmail vendors, and breaks much of
Microsoft’s monopoly power….”

“Microsoft will be obliged to allow OEMs access to Windows code
in “a secure facility where qualified representatives of OEMs,
ISVs, and IHVs shall be permitted to study, interrogate and
interact with relevant and necessary portions of the source code
and any related documentation of Microsoft Platform Software for
the sole purpose of enabling their products to interoperate
effectively with Microsoft Platform Software.”

“Techno-sabotage will be outlawed: Microsoft won’t be allowed to
“take any action that it knows will interfere with or degrade the
performance of any non-Microsoft Middleware when interoperating
with any Windows Operating System Product without notifying the
supplier of such non-Microsoft Middleware in writing that Microsoft
intends to take such action, Microsoft’s reasons for taking the
action, and any ways known to Microsoft for the supplier to avoid
or reduce interference with, or the degrading of, the performance
of the supplier’s Middleware.”


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