Court battle looms

Microsoft has been ordered by the US Court of Appeals to file its first written brief in its anti-trust case on 27 November and said verbal arguments will begin in February.

The anti-trust trial against Microsoft was brought four years ago by the US Department of Justice, but still appears to have a long way to go pending appeals.

Judge Penfield Jackson ruled that Microsoft has a monopoly in the desktop operating system market and that it had abused that monopoly.

He has now ruled that as punishment, the software giant should be split up into two separate companies.

The November deadline is much sooner than Microsoft had requested, but it gives the software giant longer to prepare than if the court had followed the US government’s proposed schedule that final briefs be presented in December.

The Appeals Court has told Microsoft to present its arguments in a 150-page document detailing why it should not be broken into two companies.

The US Department of Justice must then reply in a 125-page document on 12 January. Microsoft has to reply in 75 pages on 29 January, and final briefs are expected to be held on 9 February.

Microsoft had originally asked the court for a 60-day extension before it files its first document and that the DoJ be given the same amount of time to reply.

This story first appeared on

Related reading