Microsoft's Breakup Solution
by Rick Smith (November 7, 1999)
Now that the government is making inroads and seeming to be getting judges to agree, Microsoft may be forced to react to some sort of "break up" order from the government.
They will fight, but they must really look at the possibility that the government may win.
After talking to a number of people throughout the year, I'm convinced that Bill and Microsoft will really have to consider the following question:
If the government pursues the remedy of forcing the divestiture of parts of Microsoft, how can we (Microsoft) turn that action into an advantage, so that we keep the WINNING piece of the pie? In other words, how can Bill Gates turn this government "punch in the head" into a long-term WIN.
The answer I've come up with may, at first, sound controversial or even radical, but it would single-handedly STOP the government dead in their tracks from really breaking up Microsoft and might make Bill Gates an even richer man. Consider the alternative: If the court splits Microsoft into so many little pieces, their competitors will race to surpass the Baby Bills, buy them and then vanquish them one at a time. Divide and conquer.
Therefore, I feel that Microsoft should:
Sell the operating system "division" to the highest bidder(s) for big money.
© 1999 Rick Smith All rights reserved.
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