• United States
by Dan Nystedt

Microsoft appeals Korea anti-trust ruling

Mar 27, 20062 mins
Enterprise ApplicationsMicrosoft

Microsoft has filed an appeal to the Seoul High Court in South Korea seeking to reverse its decision.

Microsoft Monday filed an appeal to the Seoul High Court in South Korea seeking to reverse a decision by the country’s anti-trust regulators that included an order to offer versions of its popular Windows operating system without its Media Player and Instant Messenger software.

“The appeal is a lawsuit seeking revocation of the [Korea Fair Trade Commission’s] decision,” said Microsoft in a statement. The company said it has not broken South Korean law, and formally requested the decision be reconsidered.

In December, the KFTC fined Microsoft 33 billion won ($34 million) and ordered several remedies by the world’s largest software maker, including offering two versions of Windows in the country, one without Media Player and Instant Messenger and another that includes links to Web sites offering rival software.

“The restrictions imposed by the KFTC are more extreme than those required by the European Commission. Unlike in Europe, Microsoft would no longer be able to offer in Korea the existing version of Windows that is available everywhere else in the world,” Microsoft said.

The company added that the KFTC’s decision would create “complexities” for Korean PC hardware and software manufacturers and “erode their competitiveness in the global market.”

An English speaking spokesperson for the KFTC was unavailable.

The KFTC’s decision followed a 21-month investigation into Microsoft’s business practices sparked by a complaint over messaging software from South Korean Internet portal operator Daum Communications filed in 2001 and a separate case by RealNetworks regarding audio and video software in 2004.

Microsoft last year settled with Daum in a package valued at $30 million, while it paid RealNetworks $761 million in an out-of-court deal.