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  1. <?xml version="1.0" encoding="UTF-8" ?>
  2. <html newsdate="2009-12-16">
  3. <version>1</version>
  4. <head>
  5. <title>FSFE: EC's browser case settlement with Microsoft</title>
  6. </head>
  7. <body>
  8. <h1>FSFE welcomes greater user choice in browsers, warns that Free
  9. Software is excluded from interoperability</h1>
  10. <p>Free Software Foundation Europe congratulates the European Commission
  11. on pushing Microsoft to give users greater choice between different
  12. browsers. "The selection screen will make users aware that they can
  13. make their own choices," says Karsten Gerloff, FSFE's President. "We
  14. are glad that FSFE has helped the Commission to put limits to
  15. Microsoft's desktop monopoly."</p>
  16. <p>
  17. The Commission announced today that it has settled its antitrust case
  18. against Microsoft regarding web browsers. FSFE participated in the
  19. case as an interested third party. "Microsoft has abused its dominant
  20. market position to push out competitors by tying its own browser to
  21. the Windows operating system," says Gerloff. "The company's continued
  22. refusal to comply with <a href="/freesoftware/standards/def.html">Open Standards</a> also means that many
  23. websites today are designed to work only with Internet Explorer,
  24. leaving users of other browsers at a disadvantage."
  25. </p>
  26. <h2>Interoperability</h2>
  27. <p>
  28. The European Commission is also investigating the way Microsoft
  29. prevents competitors from interfacing with many of its desktop
  30. productivity programs. Microsoft has offered a unilateral
  31. commitment. Yet these promises are useless for Free Software
  32. developers, since they exclude commercial use of Microsoft's
  33. interoperability information.
  34. </p>
  35. <p>
  36. Carlo Piana, FSFE's legal counsel, says: "The patent commitments are
  37. clearly insufficient, because they don't allow commercial
  38. exploitation. This keeps out competition from Free Software, which in
  39. many areas is the biggest competitor to Microsoft's programs.
  40. Instead, Microsoft will continue to threaten commercial Free Software
  41. developers and their customers with patent FUD (fear, uncertainty and
  42. doubt)."
  43. </p>
  44. <p>
  45. FSFE's President Karsten Gerloff says: "We welcome the Commission's
  46. decision to keep the interoperability investigation open while it
  47. monitors whether Microsoft's promises help to promote competition. We are
  48. confident that the Commission will take action if the commitment
  49. doesn't improve things for Free Software."
  50. </p>
  51. </body>
  52. <tags>
  53. <tag key="policy"/>
  54. <tag key="europeancommission">European Commission</tag>
  55. <tag key="microsoft"/>
  56. <tag key="antitrust"/>
  57. </tags>
  58. </html>
  59. <!--
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