Microsoft Loses Landmark Antitrust EU Case

LAWFUEL – The Legal Newswire – A top European Union court on Monday upheld a landmark antitrust ruling against Microsoft, dealing a serious blow to the US software giant in its nine-year battle with European regulators.

The European Court of First Instance rejected Microsoft’s appeal against a ruling by the European Commission that found the software group had violated competition rules by abusing its dominant market position.

Though the Union’s second-highest court annulled a part of the Commission’s decision that deals with how the landmark ruling is monitored, the software group was unable to shake the essential elements of the March 2004 ruling.

Most importantly, the court refused to strike down the Commission’s finding that Microsoft had abused its dominant position in two ways: by refusing to supply rival companies with crucial information about the ubiquitous Windows operating system; and by bundling its Media Player software into Windows, thereby undermining competition from other media player providers.

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