Microsoft in open-source denial

Gates was interviewed by Bloomberg News television anchor Dylan Ratigan on Thursday as the company officially launched its latest operating system -- Windows 2000. But the comment in question came after the taping ended when Gates was leaving and the reporter asked whether he would be willing to open up Windows source code to third-party companies in order to settle the case.

"He looked at me and it was very conversational. He said, 'Yeah, if that's all it took,'" Ratigan said on Bloomberg Radio. A Bloomberg News spokeswoman said in a phone interview that the news agency stands by its story.

However, Microsoft spokesman Jim Cullinan said Ratigan's description of the conversation was completely wrong. Gates did not make that comment, but instead told Ratigan, "That issue is not even related to this case," according to Cullinan.

"It's disappointing that misinformation is being spread out there," Cullinan said.

In the taped portion of the Bloomberg interview, Ratigan asked Gates whether Microsoft would open Windows source code to compete with the Linux open-source operating system, and Gates indicated he would oppose such a move.

"In order to have the great reliability we promise with Windows you can't have all these variant versions where somebody's gone and tinkered with the source code here and tinkered with the source code there," Gates said in the taped portion of interview.

The Microsoft chief has never commented publicly on mediation talks with the DOJ, which is the company's policy, Cullinan said. During the taped portion of the interview, Gates said only that the vendor is working hard to settle the case.

Microsoft and US Department of Justice lawyers are scheduled tomorrow to return to US District Court Judge Thomas Penfield Jackson's courtroom for oral arguments in the antitrust case. In November of last year, Jackson issued his "findings of fact" in the case, officially labelling Microsoft a monopoly.

Since that time there have been several rounds of filings in the case, as well as reports that in settlement talks mediated by Richard Posner, chief judge of the 7th Circuit US Court of Appeals, the US Government has proposed the idea of breaking up Microsoft.

Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer last month called the idea of breaking up the company "reckless and irresponsible". His phrase has become Microsoft's standard answer to any suggestion of a company breakup to resolve the antitrust case.

Join the newsletter!

Or

Sign up to gain exclusive access to email subscriptions, event invitations, competitions, giveaways, and much more.

Membership is free, and your security and privacy remain protected. View our privacy policy before signing up.

Error: Please check your email address.
Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

Margret Johnston

PC World
Show Comments

Cool Tech

Toys for Boys

Family Friendly

Stocking Stuffer

SmartLens - Clip on Phone Camera Lens Set of 3

Learn more >

Christmas Gift Guide

Click for more ›

Brand Post

Most Popular Reviews

Latest Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Aysha Strobbe

Microsoft Office 365/HP Spectre x360

Microsoft Office continues to make a student’s life that little bit easier by offering reliable, easy to use, time-saving functionality, while continuing to develop new features that further enhance what is already a formidable collection of applications

Michael Hargreaves

Microsoft Office 365/Dell XPS 15 2-in-1

I’d recommend a Dell XPS 15 2-in-1 and the new Windows 10 to anyone who needs to get serious work done (before you kick back on your couch with your favourite Netflix show.)

Maryellen Rose George

Brother PT-P750W

It’s useful for office tasks as well as pragmatic labelling of equipment and storage – just don’t get too excited and label everything in sight!

Cathy Giles

Brother MFC-L8900CDW

The Brother MFC-L8900CDW is an absolute stand out. I struggle to fault it.

Luke Hill

MSI GT75 TITAN

I need power and lots of it. As a Front End Web developer anything less just won’t cut it which is why the MSI GT75 is an outstanding laptop for me. It’s a sleek and futuristic looking, high quality, beast that has a touch of sci-fi flare about it.

Emily Tyson

MSI GE63 Raider

If you’re looking to invest in your next work horse laptop for work or home use, you can’t go wrong with the MSI GE63.

Featured Content

Product Launch Showcase

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?