New setback for Microsoft. The Court of Justice has ratified the fine that the European Commission imposed in 2004 on Bill Gates’ company for 497 million euros for abuse of a dominant position. A sanction that the company had appealed and that today has been confirmed again by the EU Court as well as the measures that it also filed and that forced Microsoft to market a version of Windows without the Media Player and, at the same time, provide other suppliers with all the information necessary to be able to manufacture products compatible with your operating system.
Thus, the thirteen magistrates of the chamber and the lawyers of both parties have heard today the verdict that ratifies that the sentence and the measures that were imposed in 2004 on Microsoft. The only point in which the Court has given the reason for the Redmond signature is in the annulment of the appointment of an independent commissioner to control that Microsoft complies with the sentence imposed.
It should not be forgotten that in July of last year, Brussels again published a new sanction against Microsoft, this time of 280.5 million euros, for continuing to breach the rules of the free competition market.
With this new ruling, the judges of the EU Court of Justice who guarantee interoperability and prevent Microsoft from abusing the dominance of its operating system in the computer market. In this sense, they have indicated that the information that the firm must provide to its competitors consists of providing a series of protocols and not source code elements to ensure compatibility between Windows and the products they manufacture, something to which Microsoft refused, alleging that this would allow its rivals to copy its products and benefit from its technological innovations.
However, faced with this new ruling, Microsoft has no other options, although, against the ruling of the Court of First Instance, it is still possible that Gates’ company will file an appeal, although limited to questions of law, and for what It has a maximum period of two months after notification.
This case of abuse of dominant position began in 1998, when its rival, Sun Microsystems, filed a lawsuit with the European Commission alleging that Microsoft carried out monopolistic practices of its Windows operating system by denying other suppliers the information they needed to manufacture products that were compatible with Windows.
With the sentence published today, a new page in the history of this contest is written, although, presumably, not the last.