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Microsoft Government The Courts News

China Says There's No Antitrust Probe On Microsoft 87

Posted by timothy
from the and-by-under-wraps-we-meant-welcome-to-china dept.
natenovs writes "China's intellectual-property rights enforcer said the government isn't probing Microsoft Corp. for breaching antitrust laws, denying yesterday's report by a state-owned newspaper. 'We are not conducting an anti-monopoly investigation against Microsoft and have no plans to do so,' Yin Xintian, a spokesman and legal director at the State Intellectual Property Office, said by telephone today in Beijing. The newspaper's report is 'completely untrue,' the agency said on its Web site."
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China Says There's No Antitrust Probe On Microsoft

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  • by Anonymous Coward on Friday June 20, 2008 @12:04AM (#23868953)

    just like the Tiananmen Square never happened.

    • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

      by monxrtr (1105563)

      "However," noted anonymous internet sources, "probing speculation of a possible Chinese antitrust probe were rumored to have been widespread on areas of the internet outside of the China Firewall." The Redland, Shenainiganghei based office confirmed that "plans are just that -- plans -- and not promises of updates, upgrades, releases, or official actions." US officials noted that this statement was delivered by a Chinese intellectual property rights "enforcer", and not the more common Western "Czar". Said t

    • Re: (Score:1, Interesting)

      by Anonymous Coward

      Living in China, you realize pretty quickly that everything is about who you know, and how much "guanxi" you have. Literally, your network of people that you can call on. You can bet that Microsoft knows some people fairly high up in more than one government department in China, and has built up quite a lot of guanxi.

      If I had to guess, I would say that someone was getting annoyed with Microsoft on a personal level, or Microsoft was trying to get around paying someone what they thought they deserved, who the

    • by sethstorm (512897) *

      ...and that "Falun Gong" is just a search engine DoS.

    • Re: (Score:2, Funny)

      by evilkasper (1292798)
      Yin Xintian also stated "We are but a developing 3rd world country how could we possibly conduct an anti-monopoly investigation?"
    • American English is going down the tubes. Should the headline read There is no anti-trust probe into Microsoft. (into Microsoft operations). In the rest of the non-USA world, the word on is reserved for on or off topic, or sitting on a chair, being on time, standing on a podium, but writing about .... So, I want to write about the word on.
  • by notdotcom.com (1021409) on Friday June 20, 2008 @12:07AM (#23868971)

    In Communist China, antitrust probes you!

  • It looks like somebody got their cut.
    • by dave1791 (315728)

      And yesterdays "announcement" of an anti-trust suit was to ensure that they got their cut.

      There is nothing to see here... move along.

  • by pieisgood (841871) on Friday June 20, 2008 @12:11AM (#23869001) Journal
    Why would china be concerned with Antitrust probes with software companies when China needs them in order to impose there laws on citizens.
  • Floodprot! (Score:2, Funny)

    by Smoke2Joints (915787)
    jebus almighty, at the time of posting, 60% of posts so far are rated below 1. pick the ball up slashdot, this isnt something awful!
  • Microsoft have already been found guilty. However, the e-book containing permissable sentences for the crime cannot be loaded unser Vista at this time. When an upgrade becomes available...
  • by Anonymous Coward

    Hrmm... if a majority of the software in china is pirated, then can a company really hold a "monopoly" there? MS might have a majority of the desktop market(I'm not sure if they do), but they didn't do this by actually selling their products and making too much of a profit(in china at least). Anyone have any market numbers in terms of MS and how much they make off the chinese market?

    • by 1u3hr (530656)
      Hrmm... if a majority of the software in china is pirated, then can a company really hold a "monopoly" there? MS might have a majority of the desktop market(I'm not sure if they do)

      They certainly do dominate the desktop as much as in any other country. And big OEMs (Legend, Lenovo, eg) preinstall legal copies of MS software, the same as they do in the US.

      Since Bill had dinner with Hu Jintao [microsoft.com], lots of deals have been made to licence MS software.

      By tolerating piracy for a few years, now they've got the ma

      • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

        by CastrTroy (595695)
        However, isn't that kind of like dumping? Put your product out on the market, for less than it costs to make it, so that people will use it, allowing you to take over the market. Even assuming that people have legit copies of windows, they are still dumping copies of Office, and many other programs that don't come included with computers. By tolerating the piracy, they have been able to use their large monopoly, and vast piles of cash to get a stranglehold on the desktop market.
        • by 1u3hr (530656)
          However, isn't that kind of like dumping?

          Yep. Except they don't have to spend a cent pressing discs. And it's totally deniable; every now an then they make a protest. When there is a mature market it already belongs to them.

    • by westlake (615356)
      Anyone have any market numbers in terms of MS and how much they make off the chinese market?

      About $700 million in 2007.

      But Microsoft plays a deep game.

      60% of Microsoft's revenues come from outside the U.S. and have for years now.

      Microsoft is building a $300 million dollar research campus in Beijing's university district - China's "Silicon Valley."

      Microsoft is a considered a prestige employer and will have its pick of 5,000 of the best and brightest.

      How Microsoft Conquered China [cnn.com]

    • by RAMMS+EIN (578166)

      The thing is, when some agency cracks down on at least some of the people who run pirated copies of Windows, those people will be faced with a choice: pay up or cease using Windows. If Windows is required for interoperability with parties you exchange information with, paying for Windows may be your best strategy. So even if there is rampant piracy, as long as there is _some_ incentive to pay for Windows, Microsoft wins. And the combination of lock-in and piracy provides such an incentive.

  • by shri (17709)
    In China-Speak .. this is most probably the beginning of negotiations with Microsoft on various issues. It is not unusual for them to plant stories in the state run media outlets as a warning / thread, followed by an official denial.
    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by shri (17709)
      I should add, that this might not be related to Microsoft at all, but could be a warning sign for some other trade negotiations. "Mess this deal up and we're going after Microsoft"
    • by jamesh (87723)

      Governments and corporations in all countries do this all the time.

      1. Leak potential new legislation to very unreliable media outlet
      2. Measure public reaction
      3a. if extremely negative then deny it, it came from a very unreliable media outlet after all!
      3b. if only mildly negative then proceed
      4. ???
      5. Profit

  • There are no Windows servers in China. Bill Gates said so: [rediff.com]

    We don't have servers inside China, we just don't.
    • by Hal_Porter (817932) on Friday June 20, 2008 @02:43AM (#23869741)

      He's saying Microsoft doesn't have servers for its Instant Messenger or Email services inside China, not that there are no Windows servers inside China.

      The point being that your data won't be snarfed, at least in the absence of a court order from the government.

      FT: Microsoft announced a policy last week to only remove blogs from its services in China if it receives a proper legal order. By in the absence of the rule of law, surely you're not going to get a proper court order?

      BG: We're going to get a government order before we do anything. It's actually very clear who gives these orders. They haven't authorised us to be a news service, so the information departments say that is a news/information thing that is not within the writ of your activities. We're not the first media-related entity to have some activity in China.

      FT: Do you keep information on servers inside China?

      BG: Our servers are all outside China. This whole thing of inside versus outside China, I never understand that, it somehow comes up in the Google discussion. I don't get that at all. This is not about where the servers are. We don't have servers inside China, we just don't. It may be that for responsiveness at some point we'll do that, but that's not the way we work today.

      • by T3Tech (1306739)

        He's saying Microsoft doesn't have servers for its Instant Messenger or Email services inside China, not that there are no Windows servers inside China.

        The point being that your data won't be snarfed, at least in the absence of a court order from the government.

        Yes of course, I did actually read that. My point was one of taking his words out of context for humor value. :p
  • Yin Xintian is obviously a counter-revolutionary traitor.

    The State Intellectual Property Office will have to be purged.

    Do not believe him! Do not expect to hear from him ever again!

    Nothing to see here . . . move along . . .

  • This is the Chinese way of asking for a bribe!
  • by themushroom (197365) on Friday June 20, 2008 @01:24AM (#23869357) Homepage

    ...because every copy of Windows there is pirated. :)

  • by aussie_a (778472) on Friday June 20, 2008 @02:04AM (#23869559) Journal

    1) Tibet
    2) inherent right to free speech
    3) right to decide how many children you have
    4) rights inherent to human beings.

    I don't think I'm going to trust China on what it says does or does not exist.

    • 1) Tibet
      2) inherent right to free speech
      3) right to decide how many children you have
      4) rights inherent to human beings.

      5) Taiwan

      I don't think I'm going to trust China on what it says does or does not exist.

      I don't trust them either. But I think they're telling the truth here. The leaked that there would be an antitrust probe. Microsoft contacted them and made some sort of concession. Then they denied the rumours. It's a negotiating tactic.

    • by xtracto (837672) *

      3) right to decide how many children you have

      Just a comment on that. On one side, I have heard several comments regarding how Chinese are spreading (people have even used the work "Invading") all the countries, and that they should stay out of America/UK/Europe/Mexico/etc...

      On the other side I read people like you whining about the government policy for overpopulation control.

      Someone has to do something to stop the over population of a country, and the only one who can do it is the government of such a coun

    • Re: (Score:1, Interesting)

      by Anonymous Coward

      I hate to see people criticize China's one child policy. Without it, China maybe now facing extreme case of food shortage. So, instead of becoming another poor nation that need international aids, it sacrifice as a nation and bootstrapped itself into self sustainable. I like to see the same level of sacrifice from you and your country. No, if we stop polluting the world, we might harm our economy, that's bull.

      Yes, you do inherent right to free speech, the government just ignore you. So, what's the diff

    • 1) evolution
      2) inherent right to habeas corpus
      3) right to decide what to do with your legally purchased mp3s
      4) rights inherent to human beings (privacy, not subject to torture, etc)

      The US also says there's...
      1) WMD in Iraq
      2) evidence that earth was created 2,000 years ago
      3) rights by content provider to manage your legally purchased mp3s
      4) rights by Disney to extend copyright terms for 20 years

      I don't think I'm going to trust the US on what it says does or does not exist.

      The only right ensured in the US: Di

    • by Wildclaw (15718) on Friday June 20, 2008 @10:42AM (#23873153)

      1) Tibet
      China says there is no independent Tibet, and from where I stand it is very obvious that they are right. China has complete control over Tibet, just like the US has complete control over land areas that previously used to belong to other populations.

      2) inherent right to free speech
      Same with many other countries, with restrictions on libel, slander, hate speech, "confidential" information, etcetra. Although I agree that China does take a rather extreme view to the whole "subvert the goverment" stance, and disagree very much with them on this issue.

      3) right to decide how many children you have
      Atleast one country has understood that the earth can support only so many people. As a primary instinct of humans is to procreate it isn't strange that you have to rely on societal organisations to limit that activity.

      Of course, christians would rather prefer that the world became overcrowded with poor miserable people than remained decently populated with content people. (Sorry, that was a jab against religious anti-abortists)

      4) rights inherent to human beings
      First of all, inherent is deceptive word as there can't be any inherent rights for human beings just as there can't be any inherent rights for any being.

      I think what you are talking about is what we as humans, intelligent group animals with empathy, recognize as rights that humans (and animals in some cases) should have independent on the strain/hardship it puts on the rest of society.

      China which is rooted in a deeply in a community first philosophy of course have less such views, although as they are growing richer and communicating more with western countries, they are gradually changing. Of course, it will probably take a long time, but you can actually see small seeds being planted already.

      US is probably not the best places to be talking about "inherent" human rights though. The death penalty is completly unneeded and a big violation to many people. Slashdot is another place that is very selective on human rights. Economic liberterianism is very similar to the chinese view, sacrifice individuals for the greater good, although libertarianism and China defines "greater good" quite differently.

    • 5) Profit

    • by z00_miak (1305831)

      1) Tibet 2) inherent right to free speech 3) right to decide how many children you have 4) rights inherent to human beings.

      China acknowledges Tibet, they built a damn railroad [wikipedia.org] to Lhasa (world's highest railroad).

      Let's also set this straight, China does not force their citizens to have one child. They strongly encourage it.

      If a Chinese couple wishes to have an additional child, they have to pay a heavy fee as penalty, this is used as a deterrent. Additionally, the one child rule is largely ignored in the more remote parts of the country.

      I applaud China's effort to control the population. If other Governments don't fo

    • by SoulRider (148285)

      I think you can be pretty safe in adding "to the best of my knowledge" to every and all statements made by chinese officials.

  • is apparently advising the Chinese government.

  • pay up?
  • As predicted yesterday, [slashdot.org] today's announcement indicates that the negotiations have come to a satisfactory conclusions. All the minor gods in the pantheon of Chinese Government have been propitiated and the company executives have been put in their place.

    • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

      by BlackCobra43 (596714)
      Thank God we don't have anything like that here in democratic America. Excuse me, I have to go get my...laundry...from the lobbyists.
  • did someone from the BSA get lost on the way to the boardroom?
  • by kellyb9 (954229)
    China is denying a report... in a paper they own... something seems strange here.
    • by z00_miak (1305831)

      China is denying a report... in a paper they own... something seems strange here.
      That's simple, it's Doublespeak.

      Shady monopoly business vs shady Government, this should turn out well.

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