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Russia Launches Anti-trust Probe of Microsoft 221

Posted by CmdrTaco
from the from-russia-with-love dept.
NewYorkCountryLawyer writes "Russia's state anti-monopoly service said on Thursday it had launched a probe of Microsoft over cutbacks in supplies of its Windows XP operating system in Russia. The agency said it thought Microsoft had violated antimonopoly legislation by cutting delivery of Windows XP operating system to Russia both separately and pre-installed on personal computers, as well as in its pricing policy on the product. It said it would consider the case on July 24, 2009."
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Russia Launches Anti-trust Probe of Microsoft

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  • Russia launches... (Score:2, Interesting)

    by Anonymous Coward

    When I read the first two words I nearly had a heart attack, since the other launches lately have been NK testing missiles.

    • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

      When I read TFA I nearly had a heart attack, as NYCL posted something which has nothing to do with the media industry!
  • by Anonymous Coward on Thursday June 04, 2009 @11:51AM (#28211455)

    In Soviet Russia, Microsoft probes YOU!

    • Re: (Score:2, Redundant)

      by interkin3tic (1469267)

      ... I'm too late. I had hope after seeing the first post was about launches. Alas. In soviet russia, anonymous coward posts YOU first.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Thursday June 04, 2009 @11:51AM (#28211457)

    ... in Russia, Microsoft would launch the probe! /Slashdot has been lying to me....

  • ...Profit! (Score:2, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward

    After so many other countries are getting on the whole anti-monopoly bandwagon, why should Russia be left out of the money?

    • Waiting for bribes (Score:5, Informative)

      by sznupi (719324) on Thursday June 04, 2009 @12:07PM (#28211693) Homepage

      If you're referring to EU fines...they are absolutely insignificant pocket change for EU budget; they wouldn't even make a difference to most of its individual memberstates.

      In this case the amount of money would be similarly insignificant when it comes to contribution to Russian budget. OTOH...there are certianly few individuals who could forget the whole deal for some favours. That's how things work in post-soviet countries.

      In anycase, the claims are bogus, almost everybody runs pirated software in Russia.

  • by Anonymous Coward

    The Russian state anti-monopoly service is itself a monopoly.

    And you cant bring the Parker Brothers game into Russia for fear it might contact the anti-monopoly service, creating a huge explosion.

    • Microsoft and its standards shysters were quite succesful with Open XML and prevented the National Operating System of Russia. Now the next opportunity to cash in for Russian officials.

    • by jank1887 (815982)

      no, not a huge explosion. just self annihilation.

  • by an.echte.trilingue (1063180) on Thursday June 04, 2009 @11:52AM (#28211483) Homepage
    Talk about Goliath versus Goliath. The successful monopolist versus... the slightly less successful monopolist who can rewrite its own legal system. Time to invest in popcorn.
    • Re: (Score:2, Interesting)

      by BeardedChimp (1416531)
      It's worse, Gazprom is state controlled and so Russia actually encourages its monopoly by helping to extort foreign companys.

      I can understand the thinking though, the relevant analogy would be if there was a car company with 90% monopoly with the other 10% not being compatible with the petrol. The car company brings out a new more expensive model while refusing to sell the old model and stopping manufacture of old parts. Nobody has a choice since the other cars won't run on their fuel and so the company
  • Anti-monopoly? (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Andy Dodd (701) <atd7@cCOWornell.edu minus herbivore> on Thursday June 04, 2009 @11:55AM (#28211519) Homepage

    While Microsoft obviously engages in a lot of monopolistic practices and I strongly dislike them for this, Russia's reasoning seems rather flawed.

    While yes, it sucks that Windows XP is being EOLed for a lot of people because Vista is worse than XP for many users (IMO anyone with less RAM than the 32-bit addressing limit because if there's anything modern that sucks more than Vista, it's 64-bit XP), products getting EOLed is a fact of life. I can't see any reason why EOLing a product would be monopolistic.

    Hell, if anything, it would be just the opposite - EOLing a popular product in favor of a less popular product is going to drive people towards the competition.

    • Re:Anti-monopoly? (Score:5, Insightful)

      by wjh31 (1372867) on Thursday June 04, 2009 @12:06PM (#28211681) Homepage
      because you can only afford to EOL a still very popular product when you are near-monopolistic enough to be able to force people to buy the more expensive alternative.
    • Re:Anti-monopoly? (Score:5, Interesting)

      by Anonymous Coward on Thursday June 04, 2009 @12:06PM (#28211683)

      Because the market is asking for XP but MS is in a monopoly position and they can ignore the market request. Your statement of driving people towards the competition is only valid in a competitive market. The OS market is not competitive. In reality, Linux offerings are the only true competitor since hardware and licensing limits prevent someone from buying OSX and installing it on their computer and that makes up what? 1-2%?

      If the market were competitive, MS would be forced (by market forces) to keep selling XP over Vista, or see an exodus of customers. That is not possible here, because there is a monopoly actor.

      • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

        Not necessarily. If they keep selling XP, they have to keep supporting XP. If they had to do that the same for any other OS favored by a substantial number of people, they'd have 90+% of the company on support. Which would mean less new features in the new OSes, and less reason to upgrade, leaving MS with a trail of incrementally upgraded OSes, all of them needing support, and people rarely buying any of them.

        By not supporting every OS since DOS 1.0, MS had the resources to make Windows 7 attractive to s

        • the argument that Microsoft is not a monopoly is moot. they are a monopoly, here in the US, in Europe and in Russia.

          the question is whether they are using their monopoly position to harm a country's citizens. in this case, it's fairly clear that they are.

          Vista's only competition in the market is XP (Windows NT, ME, 98, 95, etc are no longer competitive). Many users see XP as a better choice. So the only way that Vista can beat XP is if it takes a fall.

          That is, the consumers want XP. Microsoft thinks it

        • by Belial6 (794905)
          No one is suggesting that every niche OS, or old OS be supported. What IS being suggested is that a business that is refusing to sell a software package that is the single most wanted package is clearly abusing a monopoly. Pointing to DOS 1.0 is at best a strawman argument.
        • by jank1887 (815982)

          actually, not selling the product and not selling support on the product are two very different things. They could keep selling the product, but with a notice that the product is no longer supported by live customer service. Patch / update development (if any) could be limited to what gets developed for existing, paid service contracts, which don't have to be renewed.

          Granted, they aren't forcing upgrades (since people can keep XP if they want it), they're just ending sale of an older product. If this someho

        • by gbjbaanb (229885)

          Not necessarily. If they keep selling XP, they have to keep supporting XP. If they had to do that the same for any other OS favored by a substantial number of people, they'd have 90+% of the company on support. Which would mean less broken features

          fixed that for you.

          Seriously, some of the 'new features' are just crap designed to make most people point and say "ooh , shiny". Admittedly there are a few good bits in there, but they could have put them into XP if they really wanted to. They didn', they wanted y

        • by Thaelon (250687)

          Arguing that monopoly practices are to blame is a joke; there are other OSes

          How is it a joke?

          Massive amounts of customers are requesting XP, but Microsoft simply denies them and forces Vista on them.

          Most businesses simply can't decide to deny their customers what they want and instead force them to pay more for the company wants to sell instead. In a market where there isn't a monopoly, the customers simply ditch that company and go to a competitor. Any time a company gets away with this, you have a clear

      • by Ogive17 (691899)
        If they don't offer what the market wants then they'll see fewer sales. Either more people pirate XP or people stop buying completely new PCs and just upgrade their old ones one piece at a time.

        It's not like they are going to brick all current computers running XP forcing people to upgrade to Vista. Sure it may be a dick move by MS, but I don't see it as being anti-competative. A company should be able to set it's own market mix.

        I would have thought most people on /. would actually welcome this news.
    • Re:Anti-monopoly? (Score:5, Informative)

      by tetromino (807969) on Thursday June 04, 2009 @12:09PM (#28211719)

      Because Russia's Federal Anti-monopoly Service (FAS) has broad powers that go far beyond regulating monopolies. For example, FAS are also responsible for regulating advertisements, foreign investments, government purchases, etc.

      IMHO, the Service's name is a bit of a misnomer; it should have been called something like the "Federal Economic Regulatory Service".

      • by tnk1 (899206)

        Because Russia's Federal Anti-monopoly Service (FAS) has broad powers that go far beyond regulating monopolies. For example, FAS are also responsible for regulating advertisements, foreign investments, government purchases, etc.

        IMHO, the Service's name is a bit of a misnomer; it should have been called something like the "Federal Economic Regulatory Service".

        I was thinking a more accurate name would be more along the lines of "Committee for State Security".

    • I can't see any reason why EOLing a product would be monopolistic.

      Having too much share of a given market is "being monopolistic" but that isn't illegal. Using your monopoly to undermine free trade or fix prices is illegal, but not "monopolistic". Before you tell us "Russia's reasoning seems rather flawed" shouldn't you at least comprehend the basic concepts behind what Russia is talking about?

  • by i kan reed (749298) on Thursday June 04, 2009 @11:58AM (#28211565) Homepage Journal
    I always thought bundling useful tools with an operating system(i.e. IE) was a poor example of leveraging a monopoly to corner a market. However, discontinuing support for old products to FORCE new ones on customers, that is leveraging a monopoly in an anti-competitive manner. This is a much more reasonable case to take against Microsoft's more shady practices.
    • by man_of_mr_e (217855) on Thursday June 04, 2009 @12:04PM (#28211665)

      XP is a 9 year old OS. Even auto makers are only required to support the parts for their cars for 7 years. At what point isn't it an anti-trust violation to want to get rid of an aging product? 15 years? 30?

      There isn't a single Linux vendor that supports a 9 year old version of Linux without paid support, and Apple certainly doesn't support 9 year old versions of MacOS either.

      • by compro01 (777531) on Thursday June 04, 2009 @12:15PM (#28211789)

        I don't see anyone wanting to require Microsoft to keep supporting it (They're going to support it with security updates until 2014 anyways). I see people wanting Microsoft to be required to keep selling it.

        • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

          by xenolion (1371363)
          I see that myself and I don't get why. People liked VHS videos but I don't see people and countries sueing Sony or other makers of them to keep them going when there is newer products out there. All I see these lawsuits and probes are just ways to find something to get money off a huge company and make them look good to some person that doesn't get what it takes to move business along. All companies out there will cut off a product at some point and move on.
          • I actually wouldn't be surprised if you could still find blank VHS tapes in Walmarts and other stores. (Wikipedia is my buddy [wikipedia.org])

            Still, the VHS format died because Sony et. al. made a legitimate case that DVD was a better format. People went out and bought DVD players and rented DVD movies and found that, you know what, it was a better experience over all.

            That has not happened with Vista.

      • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

        by Elektroschock (659467)

        When you buy a product today it should be supported 7yrs onwards

      • by sunderland56 (621843) on Thursday June 04, 2009 @12:25PM (#28211919)
        Auto makers are required to support their cars for 7 years after the last new one is sold, not from the date of introduction.

        XP was available until 2008 (if I remember correctly), which would mean that if it was a car, it would have to be supported until 2015.
      • 1. software is very different from car parts. a better metaphor would be Coke and New Coke [wikipedia.org].

        XP may be a 9 year old OS, but to many people it's a better OS than Vista. Vista is New Coke. The Coca-Cola company tried to insist on selling New Coke exclusively, but they alienated their existing customers. They went back to the original formula because New Coke was driving away customers to Pepsi and other competitors.

        If Coke was the only kind of soda, then we'd all be drinking New Coke today. Regardless of whether it was wanted by customers.

        That's what Microsoft did with Vista. Except there's no "Pepsi" competitor to force them to market their more desirable product.

        To answer your question, Microsoft can "get rid" of their aging product when they produce a new product that people want more than XP.

        • Excellent points. Also there's the fact that software doesn't age. It might look dated, but the 1s and 0s on a new XP CD are just as useful as the original ones. Cars fall apart with use and age. They have a limited lifetime, even if you don't use them they will eventually oxidize and fall apart. Software is good until there doesn't exist any hardware left that is capable to run it. It doesn't matter how old the OS is, what is the determining factor is the number of people still using it, which is som
      • According to your analogy, if Ford didn't change the design of the Mustang for 10 years, but continued to sell them for those ten years, then after 3 years they could stop selling parts?
        So, even though XP was first released 9 years ago, it was still their flagship OS until November 2006. I lean toward thinking that this action by the Russian government is unreasonable, but your analogy does not work.
      • by Tweenk (1274968) on Thursday June 04, 2009 @12:41PM (#28212129)

        Even auto makers are only required to support the parts for their cars for 7 years.

        If more than 60% of people had the same 9 year old model, they'd have to. Even if they didn't, somebody else would because it would be profitable to sell parts. When it comes to Windows, only Microsoft has the source code and can supply fixes, so it makes sense to force them to support their product, because lots of people are still using it and nobody else can do it.

      • by mcgrew (92797)

        I traded my 1989 Chevy in 2006. I had no problem hetting parts or service for it until the day I traded it. Try getting patches for Windows 98!

        You can get support for a 9 year old version of Linux if you pay for it, but you can't get support for a 9 year old MS OS even if you pay for it.

      • Bad analogy (Score:5, Insightful)

        by hellfire (86129) <deviladv@gmaMONETil.com minus painter> on Thursday June 04, 2009 @01:00PM (#28212421) Homepage

        XP is a 9 year old OS. Even auto makers are only required to support the parts for their cars for 7 years

        In the US and Europe, automobiles are heavily regulated to meet certain standards, and software is not. If a 9 year old car is many times safer, more reliable, more fuel efficient, much better looking, and more easily fixed than the 2 year old car coming from the factory now, and the new car is just a total dog, and if community outrage was so high that people would only want to buy the old car, and this was the only auto maker available to buy cars from then damn straight the community would be in the moral right to demand that company continue to support the old car model until the choice of a car that was as good or better came along.

        Microsoft is a convicted monopolist both in the US and Europe. If there was more competition, and Vista was a dog, people could turn to another company for better service. But they can't. They turn back to Microsoft and demand XP. They are, allegedly, trying to control the supply channel by strangling supplies of XP and hoping this will force demand to Vista, which will make Vista look better as sales go up. They have an image problem with Vista and they are using their monopoly power to try to fix it. If this was a competitive market and Linus and Mac OS had 33% each, We could just switch to one of them and Microsoft would have to compete.

        Once you are a monopoly, 99% of the business book is thrown out the window. Everything comes down to, "when you take an action as a monopolistic company, are you abusing your market dominance and reducing choice for the consumer?" A car maker to tried to do this without monopolistic power would shoot themselves in the foot for cancelling a profitable product line just because they want to sell more of another. The American automakers did just this, by trying to sell more trucks and SUVs when the future trend was towards smaller fuel efficient cars. Now GM and Chrysler are on life support, and Hyundai is making out like a bandit. Competition would have done that to Microsoft to, but there is none, so they have to follow different rules. If they don't follow those rules, any and all governments need to slap their greedy hands.

      • by jimicus (737525)

        XP is a 9 year old OS. Even auto makers are only required to support the parts for their cars for 7 years. At what point isn't it an anti-trust violation to want to get rid of an aging product? 15 years? 30?

        There isn't a single Linux vendor that supports a 9 year old version of Linux without paid support, and Apple certainly doesn't support 9 year old versions of MacOS either.

        If a company which holds 20% of the market discontinues a product which is still responsible for 80% of their sales, the company is in trouble.

        If a company which holds 94% of the market discontinues a product which is still responsible for 80% of their sales, the market is in trouble.

      • Excuse me, but this is Russia you are talking about. They stopped producing the Lada 2106 only three years ago and this car was in continuous production for 30 fucking years!

        They still make Lada 2104 which came out in 1984!

        And the worst thing actually is, both these cars are just facelifts and variants of the licenced Fiat 124, rolled out in 1966.

    • I always thought bundling useful tools with an operating system(i.e. IE) was a poor example of leveraging a monopoly to corner a market.

      However, discontinuing support for old products to FORCE new ones on customers, that is leveraging a monopoly in an anti-competitive manner. This is a much more reasonable case to take against Microsoft's more shady practices.

      Anti-competitive means that it hurts the competition. How will discontinuing sales of XP hurt the competition?

  • by spyrochaete (707033) on Thursday June 04, 2009 @11:59AM (#28211587) Homepage Journal

    So in Russia it's illegal for a company to sell a 10 year old product, even though that product will be 2 versions old this year? If we could make legal demands to sell retired products I'd still be eating Ninja Turtle cereal [flickr.com] today.

    • two versions old? that's a metric? Vista's lifespan was what, a year and a half?

      XP is a good enough operating system. In my (admittedly limited) understanding, demand for XP is actually quite a bit higher than for Vista. (Though this seems to be borne out by things like people paying $100 more for a Vista license so they can downgrade to XP.)

      Replacing a very popular product with a much less popular product is corporate suicide (imagine if Toyota discontinued the Corolla line and replaced it with a Hummer line -- Honda would be very pleased). The only way a company could get away with this is if they are in a monopoly position. And it's reasonable to consider that an abuse of that monopoly power to do so.

      After all, Microsoft's monopoly does not give them the right to foist garbage upon their users year after year.

      My office has XP machines, I know they work with all my software and I the people here are comfortable with that OS. If "Windows 7" (like Vista) doesn't offer sufficient enhancements over XP, why should I be forced to purchase an inferior (for me) product in order to get a new computer?

      • why should I be forced to purchase an inferior (for me) product in order to get a new computer?

        You're not forced into anything. You can buy Apple or enterprise Linux or compile your own kernel. Or, heaven forbid, you could upgrade to a newer, better, backward-compatible version of what you already have, for the same price you'd pay for the old version.

        Don't build your future on a foundation with an expiration date stamped on it. Stay agile and adaptable. A clock can tick on forever if you don't attach a timebomb to it.

      • two versions old? that's a metric? Vista's lifespan was what, a year and a half?

        It's more like two years and a half, actually (the release was on January 30, 2007).

    • You commie! (Score:3, Funny)

      by hellfire (86129)

      So in Russia it's illegal for a company to sell a 10 year old product, even though that product will be 2 versions old this year? If we could make legal demands to sell retired products I'd still be eating Ninja Turtle cereal [flickr.com] today.

      What, Fruity pebbles isn't good enough for you? What are you, a communist?

      • What, Fruity pebbles isn't good enough for you? What are you, a communist?

        What do you mean you won't share your property with the proletariat?? BAM!! BAM BAM!!

    • by je ne sais quoi (987177) on Thursday June 04, 2009 @12:45PM (#28212183)
      Nobody relied on solely Ninja Turtle cereal to obtain their living. One could argue that XP is a vital component for a lot of businesses and that by artificially restricting it as MS is doing, you are forcing them to incur an unnecessary cost. This is essentially saying that MS is a utility service and their actions are analogous to the phone company forcing all land line users to purchase new land lines just because they are old (and not necessarily in need of replacement). I don't necessarily view this as correct, but MS doesn't have too much sympathy from me because they're ditching an OS that people want to buy and somewhat arbitrarily forcing people to buy a new one that isn't as fast.
      • Poor planning is not the fault of a company whose product was so fantastic that it was foolishly adopted as a panacea. Adapt or die. It's the law of the jungle.

      • by Rockoon (1252108)

        One could argue that XP is a vital component for a lot of businesses and that by artificially restricting it as MS is doing, you are forcing them to incur an unnecessary cost.

        Microsoft is not accused of artificialy restricting any legally licensed copy of XP, so no, one cannot argue what you are claiming.

        Your analogy would be valid if they caused XP to stop working. They didn't tho.. they just don't want to sell new licenses.

        Even DOS 1.0 still works.

  • took me all of 10 seconds to find 'allofxpsp3.com'

    (starting download now)

  • Thanks Europe (Score:2, Interesting)

    by BasharTeg (71923)

    It appears that the European efforts have triggered a new trend whereby EVERY country a multinational corporation operates in that isn't its native country can start engaging in the MoneyGrab(tm) technique. I mean why let all those euros or rubles leave the country? Why not have companies come in, sell products, and then since you can't tax the hell out of them due to the WTO and the ensuing trade wars, instead just trump up some charges over being too succcessful and "tax" them that way.

    Can someone expla

    • Re:Thanks Europe (Score:5, Interesting)

      by Elektroschock (659467) on Thursday June 04, 2009 @12:33PM (#28212023)

      Because antitrust is about enforcement of competition rules as to create a free competitive market. WTO is concerned about barriers to free trade and the promotion of better competition. They basically have he same objective in trade.

      It is false that Microsoft is taxed or that money was a motivation for these policies. At least on the EU side the large fines occured because Microsoft refused to comply with the moderate sanctions and played stupid. It was the first company ever which did not comply with a ruling.

      And don't forget that the US let them off the hook, just because Bush was reelected.

      In fact competition authorities don't get money or staff for the imposition of fines but rather strong lobbying and a lot of work. They would prefer to arrest offenders but criminal sanctions are not at their disposal. Deterrent fines is all they can issue and the way Microsoft communicates demonstrates that they do not show any respect.

    • by apdyck (1010443)

      Can someone explain to me why this isn't a WTO issue and why these kinds of taxes...

      Quite simple, really. The WTO collects royalties on the use of MoneyGrab(tm).

    • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

      by sznupi (719324)

      It appears you have no idea what you're talking about.

      So...again:

      a) those money are pocket change to EU budget

      b) EU primarily fines...European companies! Do you suggest "multinationals" should be given some slack?

    • by timeOday (582209)

      It appears that the European efforts have triggered a new trend whereby EVERY country a multinational corporation operates in that isn't its native country can start engaging in the MoneyGrab(tm) technique.

      Is there a trend of suing all multinationals, or just a trend of everybody suing Microsoft? If the latter, maybe, possibly, it has something to do with Microsoft?

  • by Reservoir Penguin (611789) on Thursday June 04, 2009 @12:25PM (#28211933)
    My mom works at one of the research institutes in Akademgorodok, a major research center near Novosibirsk, she along with hundreds of others have been running pirated windows/office/photoshop/matlab for as long as I can remember. This time it seems the government is serious about the crackdown on illegal software. Each lab director got a direct order to either provide every scientist with lisenses for every piece of software or install linux. Well. they all have been running Ubuntu since yesterday. So far so good.
    • Exactly! Why are so many people bitching about "oooo, there's no alternatives! We need XP still!" If people don't wanna spend to upgrade, move to the FOSS side. It's not hard, people!

      • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

        Amazing how people's attitude towards Free software changes once they learn the true cost of opening pictures with Photoshop and typing memos with MS Office. I do wish people came to Linux voluntarily but after 20 years of unrestrained piracy only threat of heavy fines can make people give up what they have come to believe is rightfully theirs.
        • Besides, computer literacy is IMHO very low in CIS countries because of piracy. Sure, everybody has the latest and the most expensive software available, but that's it. People don't look for alternatives especially if these are free which is perceived as low quality.
          So we have a great number of people who have XP Professional Corporate Edition, use Photoshop solely for red-eye-reduction, type notes in MS-Word but don't know how to insert a page break (these people are the loudest to bitch about OOo if they

  • by cryfreedomlove (929828) on Thursday June 04, 2009 @12:29PM (#28211971)
    If I were MSFT, I'd be worried about the weak rule of law in Russia. It is highly likely that there is pre-determined outcome in the mind of the Russian officials running this case and any 'investigation' will be a show trial leading to that pre-determined outcome.

    I have visited Russia many times. Might makes right. It is a system that breathes on graft and corruption.
    • Or, they find an unmarked shallow grave, 20 meters from a road that leads to a hospital, 2 km away, with 3000 Vista retail boxes, all with a single bullet hole in the Windows logo,

  • This is just too beautiful.
  • There's only I've place where I've seen more IP violations that China, and that is Russia. Heck, most of the copied DVDs sold in China COME from Russia!
  • System Operates YOU!!

    ~kulakovich
  • by superwiz (655733)
    Umm... Give us free cookies or you are a monopoly. That's rich coming from a country in which most top government officials hold positions in the monopoly energy concern of the said country. The cynicism of this move is just unbelievable. Ever since they managed to confuse the world enough to think that Georgia attacked them, they must think that the whole he-said-she-said they manufacture is enough to get their way in anything they want.
  • Microsoft has enjoyed abusing it's power and not it's on the receiving end of governments abusing their power. They deserve this.
  • A former-communist country saying that Microsoft violates anti-trust laws is very interesting.
    However, Vista sucks big time in the few installations I have and I understand why most people hate, including entire countries like Russia.

    • Well, Russia is a former socialist country, but Microsoft continues to spread socialism: there is one and only one OS, basically the same for a scientist and for a housewife. It is controlled by a single vendor (Party), is promised to deliver happiness for everyone using it and is supported by a massive amount of propaganda which claims any other ideologies inferior and is conveniently silent about its own deficiencies. Iron Curtain is in place to prevent people fleeing (vendor lock), dissidents are punishe

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