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Site-Seer: The DOJ v. Microsoft

Microsoft/Justice graphic March 2, 1998
Web posted at: 4:20 p.m. EST (2120 GMT)

From CNN Interactive Writer David Mandeville

From cream pie-wielding Belgians to the U.S. Department of Justice, everyone seems to want a piece of Bill Gates and Microsoft. The question that must be answered -- is it deserved? Has Microsoft violated the law or is this just a witchhunt spurred by envy?

If, like many people, you aren't sure which side to believe in this legal battle, here some of the places where you'll find information that might help you make up your mind.

The corporate view

One of the first sites you might think of visiting is Microsoft. Don't assume you'll be getting an unbiased view in the documents presented in the corporate information area. But you will get some insight into how Microsoft views itself and how it intends to defend itself against the Justice Department's charges.

The documents outline Microsoft's beneficial effect on competition and claim complete compliance with the Justice Department's orders. There's also a collection of the legal documents related to the allegations filed against the company. You won't find any mention of the strong-arm tactics recently alleged by Compaq executives or references to Microsoft's previous brushes with the courts over unethical business practices here.

This is Microsoft's forum for defending itself and the best place to get the company's side of the story.

Through the browser dimly

The next place you might consider is the U.S. Department of Justice. After all, they are the government and they do have an obligation to be as objective as possible, right?

You may not want to bother. Your grandchildren will be college graduates before you find anything concrete in their search engine and they'll have grandchildren of their own before the DOJ servers get it back to you.

The best you can hope for are a few press releases and some scanned court documents, all in dense bureaucrat-ese.

Pundits and Pros

Probably the best sources of information on this growing case is found on the news sites. Clarified for the general populace and updated frequently, the in-depth reports found on these sites will give you a better idea of how this situation started and where it's going next. You may find some other interesting tidbits as well.

Take C|Net's NEWS.COM, for instance. Their special feature coverage gives a good overview of the case being built by the Department of Justice and now the various states with an eye towards the technical. To get the latest, use the site's search engine. And while you're there, check out this profile of Steve Balmer, the number two man at Microsoft.

If you want to go beyond the established media, you'll find all manner of information -- and I mean all manner. You may find some educated, sensible, and informative sites. More likely, you find fan or foe rants. If this is what your looking for, I suggest your favorite search engine.

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