When the facts change, I change my mind. What do you do? -- John Maynard Keynes

Sunday, November 13, 2011

B&N asks DOJ to investigate Microsoft

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B&N asks DOJ to investigate Microsoft - ZDNet: ""Microsoft is attempting to raise its rivals' costs in order to drive out competition and deter innovation in mobile devices," Barnes & Noble lawyer Peter T. Barbur wrote in an October 17 letter to Gene I. Kimmelman, the Justice Department's chief counsel for competition policy in its antitrust division. "Microsoft's conduct poses serious antitrust concerns and warrants further exploration by the Department of Justice."

Barnes & Noble's Nook e-readers run on Google's Android mobile operating system, which has been under attack from Microsoft patent lawyers. Microsoft has convinced several device makers--including HTC, Wistron, and Compal--to pay it licensing fees for every device they sell that uses Android.

Barnes & Noble refused to pay the fee, leading Microsoft to sue it in March, accusing the bookseller of patent infringement. In its response a month later, Barnes & Noble countered that Microsoft was misusing patent law to slow down rivals."

Microsoft might want to "re-think" its policy of extor--err--demanding licensing fees on Android. Barnes and Noble is more than just another technology company making an Android device--B&N has more brick-and-mortar locations (with real employees) in more U.S. Congressional Districts than Microsoft does. Also B&N, unlike that "other" Seattle company in the book business, willingly pays state and local taxes in all locations where it sells books.


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