The curtain is coming down on a feeble case presented by the government. In its rush to judgment, the government has failed to stop and learn about the benefits to customers, consumers of the innovation and the low prices that Microsoft has championed and made reality in the PC software marketplace today.
The matter before the court was whether Microsoft could be held in contempt for violating a consent decree entered in 1995. The court denied the Justice Department's petition for contempt the case should have ended there. But on its own initiative, the court proceeded to treat the matter as a tying case and, without giving Microsoft notice or an opportunity to defend itself, issued a preliminary injunction.
This preliminary injunction threatens every American technology company's right to innovate and define what goes into its products. The ruling puts the government into the middle of complex product design issues in an industry that, for more than 20 years, has experienced incredible growth, innovation and competition - without government intervention.