Next week, the Court of First Instance will deliver what is probably one of its most important judgments ever. As “predicted”, the Court will next Monday rule on the validity of the €497 million fine imposed by the Commission on Microsoft for its bundling of the Windows operating system with its Media Player. In April 2006, I wrote several posts on the hearings in this case.
So the Court of First Instance is in the news again. The International Business Times has an extensive chronology of “17 years of EU, U.S. tussles with Microsoft”.
Reuters reports that it is unclear whether internal memos quoting Bill Gates, first offered as evidence but later withdrawn, will be allowed as evidence in this case.
The IHT also has a nice story on the case, quoting Erich Andersen, vice president and associate general counsel for Microsoft in Europe, as saying that the judgment will set precedents that "will rule the behavior of market leaders across Europe for many years to come".
In another article of Reuters, an Commission official is quoted as saying that "if we lose this one, we're in deep (trouble). It would put in question our ability to regulate competition in high-tech industries."