U.S. Department of Justice
601 D Street NW
Washington, DC 20530-0001
Renata B. Hesse, Antitrust Division
cc Senator Ron Wyden
Senator Gorden Smith
Representative Greg Walden
Attorney General, State of Oregon
January 16, 2002
Re: Microsoft Settlement.
My name is xxxxxxx and work in the communications industry as an engineer. I do not claim to be a computer expert or geek, although I probably know more about computers & software than the average user. I am simply a user of computers and their software and I would like a statement about the “Microsoft Settlement”. I have tried reading at least some of the papers on this action and incorporate that with what seems to be happening in the real world.
On this very day, I installed my tax program from Quicken and at the end of it Microsoft’s Internet Explorer was installed on my computer. I wasn’t asked, it wasn’t an option. Then I was asked if I wanted to install AOL. So here it is January 16, 2002 and after all the denials of Microsoft, I’m still getting IE shoved down my throat whether I like it or not. They (Microsoft) are obviously not concerned about anything happening to them in court. This is not the first time Intuit has done this to me and complained to them about this then to no avail.
I could tell you about the site on the internet I logged into that changed all my defaults from Netscape to IE or any of quite a number of other examples of blatant examples of monopolistic behavior but the point I thought important is even on this late date, Microsoft is continuing to muscle out competition confident that it will come through this proceedings unscathed.
I work in the telephone business and one thing for sure, as AT&T was accused of being a monopoly and they were forced to breakup into a dozen smaller companies for anticompetiveness then, Microsoft should be broken up into 200 smaller companies because not only is Microsoft bigger and stronger,. he doesn’t even try to hide the fact that he plans to muscle everyone else out. I’m not a lawyer but a blind man could see the blatant anticompetativeness of Microsoft and the fact that he can use his resources to beat off anybody including the justice department.
01-17-02 Today I tried using Turbo Tax. The first thing to do is update for latest tax information. TT (Turbo Tax) will only allow this to be done using IE (Internet Explorer). Trying to get help or post comments with Netscape only results in error messages.
TT help says:
“Internet Explorer is installed to allow TurboTax to quickly and reliably identify your
Internet Service Provider(s) (i.e. AOL, Earthlink...) and allow you to connect to the
Internet through TurboTax. Access to the Internet is required to update your
product, download your state program, and file electronically. Internet Explorer is
not configured as your default browser and can be uninstalled from your computer
along with TurboTax after you have filed your tax return.”
Which brings to question, “Why do they need to know who my IP is?” Secondly, I suspect they are really gathering some other kind of information from the computer, illegally, why else would they insist on using this browser? There may be a lot of un-documented features of IE may allow them to do lots of illegal snooping of your records. And it is just possible that Quicken has a back-door built into their programs that allows them access to all my finical records.
If this could be referred to the proper authorities or somebody tell me who I could refer this to. I believe I have a valid complaint and I would like to see something done about it.