Opera Files Antitrust Complaint Against Microsoft

Microsoft sighs, opens checkbook

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Oslo-based software maker Opera has formally complained to the European Union about Microsoft’s business practices.

The makers of the Opera web browser want Europe’s Competition Commission to compel Microsoft to unbundle Internet Explorer from Windows. Opera also asked the Commission to make Microsoft follow "fundamental and open Web standards" with its browser development.

"Our complaint is necessary to get Microsoft to amend its practices," Opera’s deputy general counsel, Jason Hoida, said in a statement.

"The European Court of First Instance confirmed in September that Microsoft has illegally tied Windows Media Player to Windows. We are simply asking the Commission to apply these same, clear principles to the Internet Explorer tie," he continued.

Alternately, Opera asked that alternative browsers be included in Windows distributions if the Commission decides not to ask for the unbundling of Internet Explorer.

The web standards request would be received with open arms by the thousands of web developers working today. IE has been well known for forcing developers to work around the browser’s little differences from such standards.

"In addition to promoting the free choice of individual consumers, we are a champion of open Web standards and cross-platform innovation," Opera CEO Jon von Tetzchner said in the announcement.


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