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

12.20.07

More Lawsuits and Attacks by Proxy, Courtesy of Microsoft

Posted in America, Antitrust, Bill Gates, Europe, FUD, GNU/Linux, Google, IBM, Kernel, Law, Microsoft, Novell, Steve Ballmer at 8:39 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

The fierce battle between Microsoft and Google has a long history with many different dimensions or ‘episodes’ to consider at the same time. One of them has just resurfaced in the media. It would take a lot of time to process the information and rewrite one cohesive piece, so this post is composed from a series of recent news articles that are posted in a logical (and sometimes chronological) order. They hopefully tell the story accurately enough, unlike some journalists who seem to have missed the broader picture.

”Aren’t we already used to seeing lawsuits by proxy from Microsoft? This includes several lawsuits against Linux (the kernel). “Controversial action is better off taken in disguise. We have seen this many times before in the context of Silverlight and OOXML (Novell for instance). It’s a pattern. It’s a diversion strategy that involves proxies, as in “when you cannot attack directly, seek out some friends.” That appears to be the motto anyway.

Aren’t we already used to seeing lawsuits by proxy from Microsoft? This includes several lawsuits against Linux (the kernel). How about this very new one against IBM [via Andy Updegrove]? Here is some information about the party which launched the lawsuit:

Platform Solutions, founded in 2003, is funded by venture-capital firm Blueprint Ventures, Goldman Sachs Group Inc., Intel Capital, InterWest Partners, InvestCorp, and Microsoft.

Yes, that’s Microsoft right there. Remember that Bill Gates perceives IBM as Microsoft’s #1 threat.

This all come at a time when Microsoft and Viacom join forces against another giant (also in Forbes Magazine, whose name is Google. Google is a fast-growing giant, but the same cannot be said about IBM. It is therefore not surprising that Steve Ballmer sees Google — not IBM — as Microsoft’s #1 threat (alongside GNU/Linux)

The new attack on Google should be seen in context. There’s history there. Here is a quick summary, which was constructed by extracting quotes from the news.

Viacom Attacks YouTube (Google)

Here is where some of this story began, after Google’s inability to police its content and users.

Legal Titans Glare At Each Other Across Google-Viacom Battlefield

The Viacom versus Google case is going to be an interesting showdown.

Then, months later, Viacom had a response that justifies some of its actions.

Viacom: ‘Daily Show’ clips just the beginning

In the meantime, there’s still the matter of that $1 billion lawsuit. Viacom earlier this year sued Google over the misappropriation of copyrighted content on YouTube.

This is despite the fact that Viacom merely fights a disruptive trend and it may be too late to the party.

Viacom out of touch with Web 2.0

Listening to the anti-Google and YouTube rhetoric spewing out of the mouth of Viacom CEO Philippe Dauman one has to wonder why he bothered to show up to the Web 2.0 conference in San Francisco last week.

Microsoft Joins the Anti-Google Lobby

Watch Microsoft’s role in the lawsuits against Google. At some stages, Microsoft even encouraged publishers to sue Google.

Microsoft Befriends Google’s Foes

After a government- and monopoly-inspired period in which Microsoft had to pretend to be a gentle force for global good, the company is being forced to return to its ruthless roots. Ironically, it is doing this in part by decrying the unfair practices of a competitor and shamelessly sucking up to the Establishment.

Watch some of the hypocrisy in Microsoft’s actions.

Microsoft’s Soapbox returns with filtering technology

To that point, Soapbox was littered with pirated videos. This put Microsoft in a pickle. The software giant was agreeing to distribute content for entertainment companies whose copyright was commonly violated at its video-sharing site.

This brings us to a little more hypocrisy on Microsoft’s part.

Microsoft Shows Its Hypocrisy

Recently, Google pursued the acquisition of DoubleClick. Microsoft was fast to complain, but only later it turned out that Microsoft wanted to acquire the very same company (and got rejected by shareholders).

News Analysis: Microsoft General Counsel on DoubleClick and Antitrust

This raises a very important question – why didn’t Microsoft match Google’s $3.1 billion offer. Smith would not comment on this, but I can report from very good sources that in fact the company did offer to match it, and was willing to pay even more to insure that Google did not corner the online ad market. But for whatever reasons, the private equity firm that owned the majority of DoubleClick’s shares decided to go with Google.

[...]

I asked Smith about the irony of Microsoft asking the government to support it on antitrust. His response was interesting.

Google Gets the OK

It seemed like Microsoft’s actions (more on this later) were fruitful, but they were not. As far as the FTC was concerned, all was well at the time.

Report FTC To OK Google/DoubleClick Deal

The deal has faced fierce opposition from both Microsoft (MSFT) and some privacy advocates.

The FTC has its share problems when it comes to monopolies.

On December 20th, 2007:

FTC: We won’t block Google-DoubleClick merger

Federal Trade Commission regulators said Thursday that Google’s controversial $3.1 billion merger proposal with DoubleClick can proceed, despite earlier complaints raised by competitors and privacy advocates.

Be aware that Microsoft then started to lobby very heavily and called partners to join the attack on Google. That brings us to the next bunch of articles.

Microsoft Attacks Google

Microsoft not only invited other companies, but it also used marketing people and other groups to do its legwork and serve as seemingly-independent parties.

Microsoft trying to derail Google/DoubleClick deal by lobbying congress

Microsoft has hired lobbying firm Patton Boggs LLC to do work on “competitive issues surrounding Google/DoubleClick [sic] merger.”

Google hasn’t much luck when it comes to justice.

Microsoft Finds Legal Defender in Justice Dept.

Nearly a decade after the government began its landmark effort to break up Microsoft, the Bush administration has sharply changed course by repeatedly defending the company both in the United States and abroad against accusations of anticompetitive conduct, including the recent rejection of a complaint by Google.

[...]

In the most striking recent example of the policy shift, the top antitrust official at the Justice Department last month urged state prosecutors to reject a confidential antitrust complaint filed by Google that is tied to a consent decree that monitors Microsoft’s behavior. Google has accused Microsoft of designing its latest operating system, Vista, to discourage the use of Google’s desktop search program, lawyers involved in the case said.

The US DoJ is actually overly friendly when it comes to Microsoft. There’s a series of failures predating this.

On December 20th, 2007

European lobby rejects Google-Doubleclick merger

Google’s planned takeover of online ad giant DoubleClick for $3.1 billion will harm European citizens through greater intrusion into their privacy, the continent’s top consumer group said Thursday.

You have to wonder who is behind this. More on this in the articles below.

Google Suddenly Under Fire

EU Worries About Privacy in Google Deal

European lawmakers plan to take the unusual step of pressing antitrust regulators next month to look at privacy concerns raised by Google Inc.’s intended takeover of online ad tracker DoubleClick.

U.S. lawmakers urge Google-DoubleClick deal scrutiny

Two U.S. senators on the antitrust subcommittee urged the Federal Trade Commission’s chairman to submit Google’s purchase of advertising company DoubleClick to “serious scrutiny.”

There’s a lot more (EU extends review of Google/DoubleClick merger).

Microsoft’s Hypocrisy Returns

There are many ways (and means) to view Microsoft’s sheer hypocrisy. One of them is to consider some of the gigantic acquisitions Microsoft has successfully completed since its Google scrutiny (joint effort with AT&T)

Luckily for Google, some of this hypocrisy is actually paying off for Google.

Google: Microsoft-Viacom deal helps our DoubleClick defense

Now Google is pointing to a new, $500 million ad deal between Redmond and Viacom on Wednesday as proof positive that there’s plenty of competition in the online ad market–a not-so-thinly-veiled reminder that its planned purchase deserves the green light.

Google has more plans for the future (not that we ought to endorse such compromise of privacy).

Google looks to ad partners beyond DoubleClick deal

Tim Armstrong, Google’s president of advertising and commerce in North America, said the Web search leader’s forays into selling ads in print, radio and television had shown that marketers would be keen to use a joint system that let them better manage ad inventory.

This long and laborious post has hopefully shown how Microsoft reaches out to other parties when it needs to apply pressure on competitors. We have seen that many times before and we shall certainly see more of this in the future.

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

What Else is New


  1. Süddeutsche Zeitung Says Talking Helps While EPO Management Back-stabs Other Side of the Table

    German media gives the impression that there is peace and harmony now that Benoît Battistelli and his circle of power speaks to staff, but nothing is said about simultaneous (albeit covert) attacks against that staff



  2. Large Corporations Call the Shots in US Patent Reform

    A reminder of where we stand on the issue of patent 'reform' in the US and who is controlling or shaping it



  3. Microsoft Puts Proprietary Windows and Hyper-V Inside the Free Software-Centric OpenStack

    OpenStack, which celebrates rapid growth in this month's event in Canada, is facing a proprietarisation threat from Microsoft



  4. Microsoft's Secret Lobbying, Bullying, and the Long History of Blackmailing Politicians Around the World

    British media covers Microsoft's abuse in the UK, but there are many similar incidents, and not just in the UK



  5. Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung on Benoît Battistelli and Four EPO Suicides

    German press article from April 2015 (with translations)



  6. Links 24/5/2015: CrossOver 14.1.3, NTFS-3G Vulnerability

    Links for the day



  7. Links 23/5/2015: Fedora 22 to May 26th, Netflix in SteamOS

    Links for the day



  8. The Patents Production 'Industry' (Patent Lawyers) Still Fights Hard to Salvage Software Patents

    A review of recent writings about software patents and patents on business methods in the United States, demonstrating that patent lawyers have gotten very vocal and sneaky (trying to evade the rules)



  9. Patents as a Marketing Strategy: USPTO Now Part of the Advertising Industry

    The existence of publicity patents, or patents whose sole purpose is to advertise some products, serves to discredit the US patent office, which was originally set up to promote science and technology



  10. Microsoft Blackmails and Extorts British Politicians Over Open Standards and Free Software-Leaning Policies

    Microsoft's digital imperialism in the UK getting defended using blackmail, reminding a lot of Brits that Microsoft is just as evil as ever before



  11. Microsoft Gives Another Bug a Name, This Time Logjam™

    The Microsoft crowd is good only at marketing, even when it comes to small bugs in software



  12. Links 22/5/2015: Fedora 22 Final Release is Near, Canonical IPO Considered

    Links for the day



  13. More Utter Shame Unveiled at Battistelli's EPO: Intimidation Tactics With Help From 'Control Risks'

    The unaccountable thugs who run the EPO have hired London-based spooks to help silence their opposition and their critics



  14. GNU/Linux Still Under Attack From Apple and Microsoft, Patents Remain the Weapon of Choice

    A timely reminder of the importance of patent matters, for they are being used to eliminate the zero-cost advantage of Free/libre software and make it more proprietary, privacy-infringing, and user-hostile (as a result of blackmail)



  15. Gartner Group and NASSCOM: Will Lie for FUD, on Behalf of Microsoft and Proprietary Software

    Some of the latest arguments against Free/libre software turn out to be arriving from couriers of Microsoft and its agenda



  16. Windows is a Franchise in Demise, Don't Believe the Hype

    Ongoing propaganda about Vista 10, 'cloud', and other buzzwords or brands are put in perspective



  17. Links 21/5/2015: Fedora 22 RC2, CERN Chooses OpenStack

    Links for the day



  18. Microsoft is Again Showing Its Hatred of Free/Open Source Software by Lobbying the Indian Government to Drop a Rational National Policy

    Microsoft decides to attack Free/Open Source software (FOSS) in India, where the corporate media is very much complicit in misleading the public



  19. Links 20/5/2015: Containers, OpenStack, and EXT4 Corruption

    Links for the day



  20. The PATENT Act, Distraction of Trolls, and Lobbying for Software Patents by Protectionists

    Only large corporations and their lawyers are able to formally change the US patent system through public officials and politicians, despite recent rulings from very high courts



  21. Corporate Media and Friends of Microsoft Are Still Lying About the Cost of Vista 10

    In a desperate effort to beat operating systems that are Free (libre) and free (gratis), such as GNU/Linux or Android, Microsoft shores up the illusion of 'free' (gratis) Windows



  22. Links 19/5/2015: Linux 4.1 RC4, Thunderbird 31.7.0, OpenStack Event

    Links for the day



  23. Links 18/5/2015: Russia Chooses Jolla, Many New Distro Releases, Meizu Devices

    Links for the day



  24. Even Converting an Image to Greyscale is Now a Patent

    Simple mathematics becoming patented as Fujifilm claims 'ownership' of photographic conversion to greyscale



  25. Grooming of the World's Biggest Patent Troll, Nathan Myhrvold of Microsoft and Intellectual Ventures

    UCLA and Microsoft-linked media are framing big thugs as heroes, doing a great disservice to both academia and journalism



  26. The EPO's Fight to Bring Software Patents Into Europe is One Step Closer to a 'Victory' (for Multinationals)

    Opposition to the Unified Patent Court (UPC) is being crushed and Italy is one of the latest actors to have fallen in the battle



  27. Microsoft's 'Former' Staff Continues With His Anti-Google Rhetoric at CBS

    A Microsoft intern, who has moved on to journalism, is still showing his affinity for Microsoft with apologetics and spin



  28. More of Microsoft's False Claims About Cost of Vista 10 and More Layoffs

    Vista 10 is still being marketed using lies and Microsoft may be going down the same route as Nokia



  29. Microsoft Remotely Bricks -- Intentionally -- Xbox One

    Microsoft is showing off its kill switches, kills consoles of people whom it doesn't like



  30. IRC Proceedings: May 3rd - May 16th, 2015

    Many IRC logs


CoPilotCo

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

CoPilotCo

Recent Posts