European Court of First Instance rejects Microsoft challenge to European Commission decision
Edited by Johnathan Jenkins
European Court of First Instance summary and press release
On September 17, the European Court of First Instance rejected Microsoftâ€™s challenge to the European Commissionâ€™s 2004 determination that Microsoft â€œabused a dominant market positionâ€ by:
- refusing to supply competitors with proprietary â€œinteroperability informationâ€ necessary to develop products that would compete with Microsoft workgroup server products, and
- bundling Windows Media Player with Windows operating systems, without an unbundling option, between 1999 and 2004.
In its 2004 determination, the Commission imposed a fine of nearly â‚¬500 million, which the Court left unchanged. Microsoft may appeal the decision to the European Court of Justice within 60 days.
The court sided with Microsoft on one procedural issue, holding that the Commission exceeded its authority in requiring Microsoft to appoint a monitoring trustee with powers independent of the Commission at the companyâ€™s own expense. Microsoft itself acknowledged, however, that the trustee issue was relatively unimportant.