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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 4/30/2008 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.

"So if you want to save the planet, feel free to drive your Hummer. Just avoid the drive thru line at McDonalds." -- Michael Asher

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