Print 39 comment(s) - last by DeathSniper.. on May 1 at 11:51 AM

Appeals court denies review of Microsoft's appeal against class action status

Microsoft’s short lived break from the “Vista Capable” lawsuit did not quite see the result the software giant was hoping for. After Microsoft’s appeal of a decision to allow the lawsuit to continue as class action, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 9th Circuit on Monday denied to hear it.

A statement issued to BetaNews by Microsoft legal spokesperson, Jack Evans, claimed, "The Ninth Circuit's decision not to accept our request for interim review is not a ruling on the merits of our case. We look forward to presenting all of the facts on what the district court itself said is a novel claim."

The suit was filed following and accusation against Microsoft for falsely displaying the “Vista Capable” sticker on Window’s machines that lacked in hardware support. The machines were able to run Windows Vista Home Basic, but failed to handle the other versions. This caused uproar especially with the crowd looking forward to the Vista Aero Glass feature.

It would seem this case is cut and dry with Microsoft misleading customers, but the argument prolonging the case consists of Microsoft’s use of two different stickers. Machines that could only run Home Basic were planted with the “Vista Capable” sticker, while machines that could run all versions were labeled “Vista Ready.”

With the case moving forward as class action and the continuation of discovery, Microsoft could see a rough path ahead if new information comes to light. Over the period of the suit, emails quoting Microsoft’s execs bashing the operating system on their low grade machines as well as the company lowering Vista’s graphics requirements so that Intel can make a few extra dollars on its motherboards has already made this case very intriguing. 

With the discovery of new information, Microsoft could take a lot larger hit than they first expected.   At this point, whether Microsoft wins or loses all the information released and to be released could really put a damper on software sales and future contracts.

The remainder of the case should be quite entertaining if we see what we have been seeing. No other information has been released as of yet.

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RE: This is ridiculous
By Screwballl on 4/24/2008 2:10:18 PM , Rating: 2
FIT... once again you amaze me with your "god" complex... The average consumer does not read websites or labels about a product. They can't tell the difference between an 6000+ and a E6300, they don't know to read about the recommended versus minimum specs for software. They buy it based on the flashy sticker that says Vista Compatible, so if they see the computer can run Vista then they expect it can run Vista well, run it fast and with all features intact... not some watered down sub standard version of Vista. This is where the lawsuit comes into play and I am saddened by all the support others have stated for your comments. Your comments support Microsoft and its greed that has caused millions to rethink buying Microsoft products, Microsoft is out to screw the consumer and this is exactly what they did.

I hope that someday you learn some humility and that just because YOU know something, millions of others do not. The average consumer sees flashy signs and lights and are persuaded by the impression and eye catchers, not the technical difference between a P965 chipset and a G915 chipset.

RE: This is ridiculous
By Reclaimer77 on 4/24/2008 2:29:47 PM , Rating: 2
Microsoft is not the devil.

However the whole " Vista Capable " problem exists because they made too much of a gray area. Microsoft, of all people, should understand the HUGE majority of their customer base are not super technophille geeks. They didn't know Vista was a POS system hog of an OS. And why should they assume they bought something that can't run the full version of Vista ?

Using poor lose wording to entice sales is nothing new. But sometimes you get called on it, and thats what has happened here.

MS isn't satan. They aren't out to "screw everyone " or any such dribble. They just made a mistake. People were mislead, plain and simple.

RE: This is ridiculous
By odessit740 on 4/24/2008 3:12:10 PM , Rating: 2
And it is for that reason, because Microsoft made a mistake, that they should be held accountable for it. It is about accountability and Microsoft needs to be accountable for their products. Microsoft didn't come out with 5 different stickers, they came out with 1. Therefore, it would be assumed that Vista would work for any laptop that had that sticker if that sticker was on it. They should've come out with a sticker which stated which version(s) each laptop would be compatible with, they didn't, they made a mistake, and intentional or not, they need to be held responsible. (All of this is IF they are found guilty, thats what the courts are for.)

RE: This is ridiculous
By FITCamaro on 4/25/2008 10:16:30 AM , Rating: 2
You don't even know what you're talking about. They had 2, count them 1.... 2 , stickers that indicated what the system was capable of. Please go back to school and learn to read.

RE: This is ridiculous
By just4U on 4/27/2008 1:37:58 PM , Rating: 2
What troubles me about all of this is that with the launch of Vista we saw a bunch of testing software to .. Is your system able to run vista? You even have a feature built right into the OS that gives you a indication of what your Vista experience will be like... so sticker or no sticker you should have some idea how well a given machine is going to perform with it.

RE: This is ridiculous
By Kenenniah on 4/24/2008 3:22:10 PM , Rating: 2
quote>The average consumer does not read websites or labels about a product.
That might be true, but it's also their own fault. It has nothing do do with a "god" complex or being elitist. How much computer knowledge you have doesn't matter. You don't have to have be knowledgeable on the subject to look at reviews or ask people that know. It's time to stop catering to and feeling bad for people that are too lazy or stupid to learn more about something before making a purchase, regardless of whether it's computers or not. I know next to nothing about cars, so before I purchased my last vehicle I looked at web reviews, consumer reports, and talked to friends. I'm sorry, but people that don't deserve what they get.

Unfortunately you are correct. Flashy signs and lights do persuade the masses, but why should we cater to that? It is NOT a good thing. It's something we seriously need to change. Just look at political ads and voters. It annoys the crap out of me that politicians are elected basically because of "flashy signs and lights" and rarely because of actual policies and values.

As I mentioned in a previous post, should all video cards marketed as Direct X 10 capable be able to play all DX 10 games like Crysis with all features turned on? Should people that invest in the stock market without any research be entitled to a refund when they lose everything?

Maybe it is a little elitest, but I expect people to have some level of intelligence and some ability to take responsibility for themselves. If the masses are mindless drones drawn to pretty lights it's their own fault, and I will not accept that the idea that they don't have a choice. Being conscientous about purchases does not require a degree in quantam physics. It's not about how book smart someone is, but mostly about laziness. They want a quick fix with no work on their own part, they want everything spoonfed and handed to them. Call me crazy, but I think the world would be a better place if we stopped condoning this and started making people responsible for their own choices.

RE: This is ridiculous
By FITCamaro on 4/25/2008 11:17:33 AM , Rating: 2
I'm glad someone else feels that stupidity and laziness need to stop being rewarded.

RE: This is ridiculous
By exanimas on 4/24/2008 3:30:31 PM , Rating: 2
That's the same as saying that the average person isn't familiarized with every single law, so why should you be held accountable when you break it? The consumer made a dumb purchase because they didn't research the product before they bought it. Microsoft had the resources out there to inform customers, they just didn't look for it. Next time you get pulled over try telling the cop that you didn't know what you did was illegal and see how they respond to that.

Ignorance is no excuse.

RE: This is ridiculous
By FITCamaro on 4/25/2008 10:13:58 AM , Rating: 1
They buy it based on the flashy sticker that says Vista Compatible, so if they see the computer can run Vista then they expect it can run Vista well, run it fast and with all features intact... not some watered down sub standard version of Vista.

Yes and that is the problem with the American consumer. They don't know anything about anything. They think that they should be able to buy something for a rock bottom price that performs/is as good as a product at a higher price. They don't want to accept that the piece of shit they bought from Walmart for $500 isn't going to be as good as the $1000 computer bought elsewhere.


I do not have a god complex. I have the opinion that people are responsible for their own actions and decisions. If you choose to be ignorant, you should have to face the consequences. You shouldn't be able to sue because you made a bad decision and they didn't stop you. If you choose not to educate yourself about a product, that's no ones fault but your own. I've bought shitty products before. Did I sue over it? No. I learned from the mistake.

RE: This is ridiculous
By Screwballl on 4/30/2008 2:26:57 PM , Rating: 2
Why is it the "American" consumer? Again you show your contempt for what you do not know.
People want the best deal and expect proper inclusion of options such as the capability to run the full suite of Vista options on a machine that says Vista Ready or Vista Capable. There was no asterisk that stated "Vista Capable*"
"*not all features of Vista business or Premium version will run on this machine due to lower system specifications"
Do you buy a wireless router that says "802.11g capable" to find out it only has the "b" spec abilities and to get the "g" specs you have to buy an upgraded model? It says on the box.
In both cases (the router and Vista), it is false advertising. In both cases it is best for them to get sued.

You DO have the "god" complex, every word of your posts drip with disdain and elitism again anyone who disagrees with your opinion or "perceived" facts.

I agree, people should be responsible for their actions and decisions. When that action or decision is the fault of another company, the person is not at fault. The company, not the person should be subject to the consequences.
There is a difference between false advertising and lack of education. You expect these high school kids or retirees working at the bigbox retailers can tell the difference? No, they tell the customer that it means it can run Vista. The sticker itself says it can run Vista. As i said previously, it does not say "Vista Capable*" with an "exclusion of what it can run". This is the fault of Microsoft and Microsoft alone for allowing this to happen.

RE: This is ridiculous
By Kenenniah on 4/30/2008 4:36:55 PM , Rating: 2
You expect these high school kids or retirees working at the bigbox retailers can tell the difference?

Quite frankly, yes they should be able to. The fact that they aren't knowledgable about the products they are selling is a sad commentary on how things have become. Of course this is mostly due to the stores not adequately training employees, but it's also partially due to non savy consumers. Even with horrible customer service records, consumers still flock to these stores and purchase items in volume. Therefore why would the stores bother to spend the time and money to train employess well? We can't place all the blame on companies because our society in general wants things cheap and fast, and something has to be given up to acheive that.

On the Microsoft sticker front though, yes MS could have done a better job of differentiating the stickers. I just don't think the blame lies fully on them. The stores should have trained their employees to know the difference and the PC manufacturers are the ones that list the PC specs. Why aren't they liable?

For your router analagy, how many router boxes say that you may not connect at full 802.11g speeds? Or how many boxes explain that connection speed is different than thoroughput speed (which is something most people have no clue about)? I've seen quite a few routers no matter what the conditions are never come close to their rated speed. Or how about Watt ratings for amplifiers? Many consumers don't know the difference between peak and RMS, but do you see that explained on the advertisments? They only see this $100 amp says 100 watts while a $500 amp says 100 watts also. One is peak and one is RMS, but they don't know the difference.

Bottom line is I'm not saying any of this is right. I do think companies should be more forthright with their advertising and labelling, and in a perfect world this would be the case. Since the world isn't perfect though, consumers need to take some responsibility and get to know what they are buying. While it shouldn't be the case, I never take a salesman's or company ad's word without checking on my own.

The only reason that this case is being made such a big deal of, is that it is many people's favorite villian Microsoft.

RE: This is ridiculous
By DeathSniper on 5/1/2008 11:51:35 AM , Rating: 2
Ignorance is not an excuse.

"If you look at the last five years, if you look at what major innovations have occurred in computing technology, every single one of them came from AMD. Not a single innovation came from Intel." -- AMD CEO Hector Ruiz in 2007

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