Language Selection

English French German Italian Portuguese Spanish

A Less-Public Path to Changes In Antitrust

Filed under
Microsoft

Throughout Microsoft Corp.'s long-running defense against charges that it broke antitrust laws was an intriguing subtext: Technology industries are so new and different that many aspects of traditional antitrust law don't apply.

It's a thorny issue, one that Congress might even touch on when it considers a nominee to replace R. Hewitt Pate, who resigned this week as head the antitrust division at the Justice Department.

But as usual in today's Washington, the important decisions don't get ironed out in places as public as congressional hearings. Instead, significant revisions of U.S. antitrust law are being hashed out by a group composed mainly of lawyers who represent large companies.

And Microsoft -- found to be an illegal monopolist on two continents -- is likely to have some influential allies.

The work is being carried out by an organization called the Antitrust Modernization Commission. Created by Congress in 2002, the commission is examining a series of questions that challenge long-standing antitrust enforcement policies.

The head of the 12-member commission is Deborah A. Garza, a partner at Fried, Frank, Harris, Shriver & Jacobson LLP in Washington. Garza's partner and close associate in the firm, Charles F. Rule, represents Microsoft in court proceedings that monitor the company's compliance with its consent decree with the Justice Department.

Also on the commission is John L. Warden, based in New York with the firm of Sullivan & Cromwell LLP. The gravelly-voiced Warden was Microsoft's lead outside attorney during much of its case.
Alan J. Meese, the commission's senior adviser and a law professor at William & Mary, wrote papers during the case arguing against the government's proposal to break up Microsoft into two companies.

For several months, the commission has been soliciting requests for topics to study and recommendations on the issues it decided to address. Actively participating in submitting suggestions is a task force of the American Bar Association led by Richard J. Wallis, an in-house Microsoft attorney who heads the ABA's antitrust section.

The issues the commission is tackling could have broad impact, and many are near and dear to Microsoft. Among them: Full Story.

More in Tux Machines

digiKam Software Collection 4.3.0 released...

After a long bugs triage, we have worked hard also to close your reported issues.. A long list of the issues closed in digiKam 4.3.0 is available through the KDE Bugtracking System. Read more

Seneca College realizes value of open source

Red Hat has done a lot of work with CDOT, lately specializing in Fedora for ARM processors. Pidora, the Fedora Linux Remix specifically targeted to the Rasberry Pi, was primarily developed at CDOT. Another company that we have been working with lately is Blindside Networks. They do a lot of work with CDOT on the BigBlueButton project, which is a web conferencing tool for online education. NexJ is a Toronto-based software development firm that has worked with CDOT on various aspects of open health tools on the server side and integration of medical devices with smart phones. We have recently started working on the edX platform, where developers around the globe are working to create a next-generation online learning platform. Read more

Today in Techrights

Initial impressions of PCLinuxOS 2014.08

I spend more time looking at the family trees of Linux distributions than I do looking at my own family tree. I find it interesting to see how distributions grow from their parent distribution, either acting as an extra layer of features which regularly re-bases itself or as a separate fork. New distributions usually tend to remain similar in most ways to their parent distro, using the same package manager and maintaining similar philosophies. When I look at the family trees of Linux distributions one project stands out more than others: PCLinuxOS. Read more