MS in frame in 4m user ‘racism’ class action bid

Has someone been monkeying with MS Publisher?

Microsoft has been accused of racism in an action in the San Diego federal District Court by John Elijah, a black man. He complains that an image of a black couple contained in MS Publisher is displayed if a user searches the images for "monkey". Elijah, a building site worker who is married with two children, said he was humiliated, and that his wife was frightened of being attacked by skinheads as a consequence. He also added that he was not bringing the action for money, but to get the problem fixed. Microsoft's resident apologist Greg Shaw said in a stock remark that sounded about as inappropriate as you could get, that: "We regret any offence [OK so far] or inconvenience [what 'inconvenience', Shaw?]". Any inconvenience is likely to be to Microsoft, since Elijah's lawyer, Harvey Levine, is hoping to turn the action into a class suit, which could involve up to four million black and white people who have bought the product going after Microsoft for money, in most cases. ®

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