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Stratfor.com : The Geopolitics of Microsoft

May 01, 2000, 19:27 (17 Talkback[s])

[ Thanks to Brad Stewart for this link. ]

"By moving to break up Microsoft, the U.S. Justice Department is tackling the domestic challenge that the company poses to anti-trust law. It is unclear whether the company will simply acquiesce. As important, the breakup of Microsoft could be a setback for the United States abroad. An unintended consequence of the company's success has been the way it has magnified American power overseas, from the cultural sphere to the dominance of information."

"On Friday, the U.S. Justice Department turned over its next card in the Microsoft anti-trust case. Having already won a ruling in federal court judging the company guilty of violating anti-trust laws, the Justice Department asked that Microsoft be broken up. The government proposed dividing the company into two parts: one owning the Windows operating system and the other owning everything else, from Office Suite to Microsoft Mouse."

"Unless Microsoft simply -- and stunningly -- agrees to the breakup, there will be years of litigation ahead and a major clash between U.S. domestic policy, on one side, and the country's foreign policy, on the other. The Justice Department may not be considering it, but an unintended consequence of the company's success has been the magnification of American power. It has helped spread American culture, the use of the English language as the new lingua franca and given the country unparalleled dominance in computing around the world."

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