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The company developed 12 internal principles to abide by

Still feeling the pinch of the EU's decision to fine $357 million, Microsoft this week released a formal pledge, a list of 12 rules that the company said it will abide by, in order to facility healthy competition in the software market. Microsoft said that it will comply by the self-imposed rules, as well as comply with industry and government regulations.

During a conference, Microsoft general counsel Brad Smith indicated to an audience made up of industry professionals that his company would be focusing on user freedom, choices and that companies can expect this trend to continue well after Vista. "In the broadest sense, I am here to pledge Microsoft's continued commitment to vigorous competition and vital innovation in the software marketplace -- and to explain how this commitment is guiding our development of the next-generation Windows operating system, Windows Vista," said Smith.

Microsoft outlined the following 12 self-imposed commitments:
  • Installation of any software
  • Easy access for software makers
  • Defaults for non-Microsoft programs
  • Exclusive promotion of non-Microsoft programs
  • Business terms (no retaliation against PC makers that support non-Microsoft software)
  • Disclosure of APIs
  • Freedom of choice in Internet services
  • Open Internet access in Windows
  • No exclusivity in middleware contracts
  • Availability of communications protocols
  • Availability of Microsoft patents
  • Support for industry standards
Microsoft also addressed the issue of net neutrality. Smith said that Microsoft would "design and license Windows so that it does not block access to any lawful Web or impose any fee for reaching any non-Microsoft Web site or using a non-Microsoft Web service." However, Smith admitted that the 12 principles were not entirely comprehensive and that there were a lot of answers still left unanswered.

Meanwhile, the EU has not backed off. According to regulations, Microsoft has until the end of this month to comply with EU regulations or face an increase in fines. The EU stated in a report that it would fine Microsoft double the amount -- roughly $634 million -- it received last week if it failed again on July 31st.

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RE: Nice Sentiments
By Pirks on 7/20/2006 3:52:56 PM , Rating: 4
I'm sure most, however, know they wont
I know they rather will. When you grabbed all x86 desktop OS market you can start playing good daddy and watch kids playing on the market, all the apple unices and such. You can even stop dirty games now, this won't change much. Why would MS need to stomp on anyone now if their dekstop OS monopoly does it for them?

Just sit and enjoy customers paying you - they have not much choice if they want games, multimedia and full gamut of cool stuff on their PCs. It's either Windows or... Windows - hence no need to do any nasty tricks anymore.

RE: Nice Sentiments
By TomZ on 7/20/2006 5:06:18 PM , Rating: 3
I know they rather will. When you grabbed all x86 desktop OS market you can start playing good daddy and watch kids playing on the market

QFT - I agree completely. Microsoft can only lose market share from this point by playing dirty.

RE: Nice Sentiments
By Merry on 7/20/2006 5:31:11 PM , Rating: 2
good point

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