NOTE: It goes without saying, but to be clear, none of my thoughts here are related to Mozilla itself
Mitchell Baker has a post on the EC prelim conclusion on Microsoft and IE:
From EC: “Microsoft’s tying of Internet Explorer to the Windows operating system harms competition between web browsers, undermines product innovation and ultimately reduces consumer choice.”
Mitchell has some very interesting points, and the two high level ones that stick out at me are:
They did a bad bad thing
In my mind, there is absolutely no doubt that the statement above is correct. Not the single smallest iota of doubt. I’ve been involved in building and shipping web browsers continuously since before Microsoft started developing IE, and the damage Microsoft has done to competition, innovation, and the pace of the web development itself is both glaring and ongoing.
Bloody hell, coming up with a remedy that is fair and good for the Web is tough!
There are separate questions of whether there is a good remedy, and what that remedy might be.
The extent of the damage is so great that it makes it difficult to figure out an effective and timely remedy. I believe it’s worth some effort to try.
Thinking about the users, you end up at PPK’s point: 0 or 5. Hard indeed.
Also, take a good look at the entire Mitchell post as it is really interesting to see how Firefox has grown despite of the barriers, and that Microsoft shouldn’t be able to use it as a “see, look what can be done.”
Bizarre times indeed.