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December 11, 2006

Nothing like an antitrust trial for dirty laundry

Posted by David Hunter at 5:27 PM ET.

From the ongoing Iowa Microsoft antitrust trialAllchin 2004 email: I’d buy a Mac if I didn’t work for MS:

Conlin completed her opening statement at 12:50. Co-counsel Hagstrom began his part of the Plaintiffs’ opening statement. Hagstrom first began with a quote from Nathan Myrhvold, “There is a huge value to a monopoly, and we have the position and skills that it makes sense for us to shoot for it.” Hagstrom continued, “’Huge value to a monopoly’, think about what that means.” Hagstrom reviewed the specific ways Plaintiffs believe that Microsoft harmed Iowans. He emphasized that “competition is good, monopoly is bad.” A good example:

Exhibit 7264. Almost three years ago, on January 7, 2004, Jim Allchin, the senior executive at Microsoft, sent an E-mail to Microsoft’s top two executives, Bill Gates and Steve Ballmer, and the subject was losing our way.

Mr. Allchin says, I’m not sure how the company lost sight of what matters to our customers, both business and home, the most, but in my view we lost our way. I think our teams lost sight of what bug-free means, what resilience means, what full scenarios mean, what security means, what performance means, how important current applications are, and really understanding what the most important problems our customers face are. I see lots of random features and some great vision, but that does not translate into great products. He goes on to say, I would buy a Mac today if I was not working at Microsoft.”

We’ve heard about similar opinions from Allchin before, but the Mac part is a nice rhetorical touch.

Update: Jim Allchin says it was a great rhetorical device and Vista is much better now, thanks. A commenter adds a comedic touch with:

It’s OK, Jim. Be honest about what you think: the Mac brotherhood is ready to accept you with pride. Show your true colours: you know your true heart is with an iMac. In a fruity colour.

Filed under Antitrust, Bill Gates, Executives, General Business, Governmental Relations, Jim Allchin, Legal, Microsoft, Steve Ballmer

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2 Responses to “Nothing like an antitrust trial for dirty laundry”

  1. More revelations at the Microsoft antitrust trial -- Microsoft News Tracker Says:

    [...] Less serious but certainly more amusing was the disclosure of yet another email from Microsoft executive Jim Allchin (previous revealed missive here). This one from 2003 lamented that Microsoft’s PlaysForSure partners were “sucking on media players” and suggesting that Microsoft open up a dialog with Apple about supporting the iPod. [...]

  2. Microsoft settles Iowa antitrust suit -- Microsoft News Tracker Says:

    [...] The antitrust suit against Microsoft in the state of Iowa which had produced a variety of bad press for Microsoft in recent weeks (e.g. [1], [2], [3]) has been settled: A class-action lawsuit that alleged Microsoft Corp. overcharged consumers was settled Wednesday for an undisclosed amount. [...]

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