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Microsoft is once again calling out Google over its business practices
Continues to mount ironic campaign against Google's business practices

While perhaps everyone except Microsoft itself sees the irony in this, the company is continuing its public assault on Google and its practices in a new blog post this week.

In a Microsoft on the Issues blog post titled "Google’s misleading security claims to the government raise serious questions", Corporate Vice President & Deputy General Counsel David Howard basically calls Google a liar for touting certification under the Federal Information Security Management Act (FISMA) for its Google Apps for Government. Howard claims that unsealed court documents now prove that the certification was for a different software suite, Google Apps Premier.

"Open competition should involve accurate competition. It’s time for Google to stop telling governments something that is not true," Howard concludes.

Why does Microsoft really care about certification for a software suite for government employees? Well, because Google stepped in when it looked like Microsoft was going to be selected to provide a cloud-based email system to the Department of Interior. Google sued the government, claiming favoritism towards Microsoft by the DoI. Google then tried to sell its Google Apps for Government suite, citing its FISMA certification, which "creates a process for federal agencies to accredit and certify the security of information management systems like e-mail," Howard writes. "FISMA-certification suggests that a particular solution has proven that it has met an adequate level of security for a specific need."

When documents of the legal proceedings were unsealed last week, the Department of Justice brief read: “On December 16, 2010, counsel for the Government learned that, notwithstanding Google’s representations to the public at large, its counsel, the GAO and this Court, it appears that Google’s Google Apps for Government does not have FISMA certification.”

Rather, the General Services Administration (GSA) under FISMA had certified Google Apps Premier for its own use. Meanwhile, Google Apps for Government was still in the process of certification.

"To put it charitably, because of Google’s unwillingness to provide answers, the facts have remained opaque," Howard writes. "As a result of the lawsuit, it looks like we finally are beginning to get some answers.

Comments on Howard's blog post take a generally mocking tone, as someone identified as Kevin sums up: "Is it 'open competition' if only Microsoft products are available for government contracts?" 

Another commenter, identified as Chuck, had this to say: "Microsoft is afraid of Google -- very afraid."

Perhaps fear can also help explain why a company the size of Microsoft, once the principal of a very public antitrust lawsuit in the 1990s, has filed an antitrust complaint against Google in Europe.

Microsoft's lengthy list of complaints against Google in Europe are all summed up in another blog post, which takes note of the irony: 

There of course will be some who will point out the irony in today’s filing. Having spent more than a decade wearing the shoe on the other foot with the European Commission, the filing of a formal antitrust complaint is not something we take lightly. This is the first time Microsoft Corporation has ever taken this step. More so than most, we recognize the importance of ensuring that competition laws remain balanced and that technology innovation moves forward.  

So, because Microsoft was once in Google's position, it learned its lesson and now understands the importance of competition? 

Meanwhile, Google still claims FISMA certification over on the Google Apps for Government webpage.



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RE: MS has a point....
By BZDTemp on 4/12/2011 12:59:47 PM , Rating: -1
No it's funny because Microsoft again and again are doing what they can to use their muscles and doing it unfair - we are not just talking past activities. As for Microsoft having become a different company I don't see it - look at the stunt they pulled with SCO to halt the move towards Linux.

An important point is that it's Microsoft is saying Google does something wrong and that is certainly not the same as Google actually doing something wrong.


RE: MS has a point....
By omnicronx on 4/12/2011 1:32:06 PM , Rating: 3
quote:
No it's funny because Microsoft again and again are doing what they can to use their muscles and doing it unfair
So once again.. you find it funny because Google is partaking in exactly the same kind of activities that you are blasting Microsoft for..

Furthermore protecting IP has absolutely nothing to do with monopolistic activity. (whether you agree with it or not is irrelevant)

So please enlighten us as to what 'terrible muscle flexing' activities you are talking about?

As for your last statement, Microsoft is not the only one complaining. I don't think anyone really knows yet whether or not Google has done wrong here, but thats not the point. You are defending Google by making the terrible defense that MS has done something wrong in the past, and thus they should no longer have to play on the same playing field as everyone else, including the ability to complain about possible antitrust allegations.

Your argument makes absolutely no sense.. In fact, its barely an argument at all, merely the usual MS hate mongering backed up with baseless facts.


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