States Back Off Demand for Modular Windows
They say information sharing is more important than dismantling Microsoft's flagship product.WASHINGTON--Attorneys for the states seeking tough penalties for Microsoft Corp.s antitrust actions have backed off of a demand for a modular version of the Windows operating system, saying information sharing is more important than dismantling the Redmond, Wash., software makers flagship product. The statement from attorney Steven Kuney came at the beginning of closing arguments in federal district court here this morning. Kuney began his closing by prioritizing remedy demands in response to an 11th hour order from the judge in the case. Judge Colleen Kollar-Kotelly surprised both sides just hours before closing arguments were set to begin with an order that indicates she is looking for a compromise to both the Department of Justice-approved settlement and the request for stricter remedies from the dissenting states. The judge asked both sides to prioritize issues, identify middle ground and focus on how each proposal could be modified.
Speaking for the nine dissenting states and the District of Columbia, Kuney said that disclosing APIs and other technical information is more important than creating a modular version of the Windows operating system. In fact, Kuney said that a modular Windows, which was the first provision in the states proposal, is only the fourth most important remedy behind information disclosure, more flexibility and retaliation protection for OEMs. Kuney and fellow states counsel Atty. Brendan Sullivan are expected to wrap up their part of the closing arguments early this afternoon. Microsoft attorneys John Warden and Dan Webb will make their case later today and are expected to wrap up by days end.