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The Anti-Trust Case Against Microsoft

  • Date Submitted: 01/28/2010 06:29 AM
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Since 1990, a battle has raged in United States courts between the

United States

government and the Microsoft Corporation out of Redmond, Washington,

headed by Bill

Gates. What is at stake is money. The federal government maintains that


monopolistic practices are harmful to United States citizens, creating

higher prices and

potentially downgrading software quality,   and should therefore be

stopped, while

Microsoft and its supporters claim that they are not breaking any laws,

and are just doing

good business.

Microsoft's antitrust problems began for them in the early months

of 1990(Check

1), when the Federal Trade Commission began investigating them for

possible violations

of the Sherman and Clayton Antitrust Acts,(Maldoom 1) which are designed

to stop the

formation of monopolies. The investigation continued on for the next three

years without

resolve, until Novell, maker of DR-DOS, a competitor of Microsoft's

MS-DOS, filed a

complaint with the Competition Directorate of the European Commission in

June of 1993.

(Maldoom 1) Doing this stalled the investigations even more, until finally

in August of

1993, (Check 1)the Federal Trade Commission decided to hand the case over

to the

Department of Justice. The Department of Justice moved quickly, with Anne


Bingaman, head of the Antitrust Division of the DOJ, leading the

way.(Check 1) The case

was finally ended on July 15, 1994, with Microsoft signing a consent

settlement.(Check 1)

The settlement focused on Microsoft's selling practices with


manufacturers. Up until now, Microsoft would sell MS-DOS and Microsoft's


operating systems to original equipment manufacturers (OEM's) at a 60%

discount if that

OEM agreed...


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