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Gates Can't Escape Antitrust Suits

Remember the famous Bill Gates antitrust deposition where he questioned every question, much like when Bill Clinton asked what the meaning of 'is' is?

That was almost exactly 13 years ago. The bad luck hasn't ended as Novell is currently suing Microsoft for using its market power to crush WordPerfect. When did all this happen? Right around the time of Windows 95, which is what, 16 years ago?

Novell, or at least its associates, have won money from Redmond before. The late Novell CEO Ray Noorda founded a company called Caldera. One part of that company was designed specifically to sue Microsoft. It bought the rights to DR-DOS, sued Redmond and walked away with $275 million.

Gates was recently deposed in the Novell case and was about as obstinate as he was in 1998 when questioned during the U.S. government action. According to Novell, Gates personally killed off a tool WordPerfect (which was bought by Novell) needed to build software for Windows 95.

Gates argued that WordPerfect wrote what was a poor excuse for software, that running it on Win 95 would harm the OS and that he had no obligation to help his rival.

This may be ancient history, but the lawsuit is current.

If you were judge or jury how would you rule? Verdicts readily read at dbarney@redmondmag.com.

Posted by Doug Barney on 12/02/2011 at 1:18 PM


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