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

Has someone been monkeying with MS Publisher?

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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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