MS drags Linspire back to court

Wants €100,000 fine per day

Microsoft is taking Linspire back to court and demanding a €100 000 a day fine. Linspire is "the-operating-system-formerly-known-as-Lindows", which changed its name after Microsoft launched legal action in Finland, France, Sweden, the Netherlands and Canada.

The company originally changed its name to Lin--s, but Microsoft lawyers claimed this was pronounced "Lindash" and therefore bore an "auditive resemblance to Windows". In mid-April the company changed its name to Linspire

The software giant is taking action in the Dutch courts, where it won its previous case, claiming that the word Lindows is still appearing on Linspire's website. A decision is expected by the end of this month.

Michael Robertson, chief executive of Linspire, said: "Microsoft is continuing the bullying tactics which have obliterated competition over the last 20 years...Its recent actions demonstrate that it has not reformed, but continues to be one of the world's worst corporate citizens that will do anything to squash competitors that threaten its monopoly profits."

Robertson said the action referred to words appearing in the US-required copyright notice which appears at the bottom of some pages on the Linspire website. He questioned whether consumers are really confused by the names.

Perhaps there is another solution: one Reg reader reckons the Linux company should give up on Windows and call its software "Gates". We make no comment. ®

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