Feeds

How Dubya can spring MS from the DoJ rap

The bad stuff goes on appeal, then they cut a painless deal, we reckon

  • alert
  • submit to reddit

Boost IT visibility and business value

America having now decided (sort of), a decision on the Microsoft matter now looms for President-elect Bush. According to yesterday's New York Times Dubya is tilting in the direction of easing up on Bill and his merry men, but we don't think this is the sound of the other shoe dropping we've been expecting for a while now.

The NYT cites Bush's campaign pronouncement that he favoured "innovation, not litigation," and public comments by attorney-general designate Senator John Ashcroft that suggest he's by no means with the Department of Justice all the way on this. But it's thin stuff so far, and the incoming administration remains poised delicately.

If Bush does, as seems to be the case, think Microsoft should be let off, he still can't pull the plugs on the entire antitrust case without causing an outcry at home and in Europe. He and Ashcroft can certainly take any forthcoming opportunity to let the action die - say, if Microsoft wins, or partially wins - the appeal, and that's probably the best Microsoft can hope for right now.

Possibly the most significant aspect of the NYT story, however, is that "Bush aides" seem to have been spinning. Without Dubya's lips having to move (which we hear is sometimes advantageous for the lad), they suggest he wouldn't have started the action in the first place, that he would have been readier to settle, and that he wouldn't have demanded such stringent conditions from a settlement.

Senior staff at the DoJ will undergo virtually a complete refresh with the new administration, Joel Klein is gone already, so it wouldn't be entirely unexpected for the new regime to go back to the negotiating table and offer Microsoft a deal on easier terms. But first, most of those nasty remedies Judge Jackson imposed have got to go out of the window, which means Microsoft has a lot riding on fighting a good appeal. ®

Build a business case: developing custom apps

More from The Register

next story
KDE releases ice-cream coloured Plasma 5 just in time for summer
Melty but refreshing - popular rival to Mint's Cinnamon's still a work in progress
Leaked Windows Phone 8.1 Update specs tease details of Nokia's next mobes
New screen sizes, dual SIMs, voice over LTE, and more
Secure microkernel that uses maths to be 'bug free' goes open source
Hacker-repelling, drone-protecting code will soon be yours to tweak as you see fit
Mozilla keeps its Beard, hopes anti-gay marriage troubles are now over
Plenty on new CEO's todo list – starting with Firefox's slipping grasp
Apple: We'll unleash OS X Yosemite beta on the MASSES on 24 July
Starting today, regular fanbois will be guinea pigs, it tells Reg
Another day, another Firefox: Version 31 is upon us ALREADY
Web devs, Mozilla really wants you to like this one
Cloudy CoreOS Linux distro declares itself production-ready
Lightweight, container-happy Linux gets first Stable release
prev story

Whitepapers

Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
Boost IT visibility and business value
How building a great service catalog relieves pressure points and demonstrates the value of IT service management.
Why and how to choose the right cloud vendor
The benefits of cloud-based storage in your processes. Eliminate onsite, disk-based backup and archiving in favor of cloud-based data protection.
The Essential Guide to IT Transformation
ServiceNow discusses three IT transformations that can help CIO's automate IT services to transform IT and the enterprise.
Maximize storage efficiency across the enterprise
The HP StoreOnce backup solution offers highly flexible, centrally managed, and highly efficient data protection for any enterprise.