Upon the dismissal of several antitrust claims potentially worth hundreds of millions of dollars, most companies would be hitting the PR wires immediately with a big dose of "I told you so," or "Whew, we're not going to go bankrupt!" But for tech's whipping boy and courtroom regular Microsoft
Friday, a federal judge in Baltimore threw out four of six antitrust claims that Novell
It's not as though Microsoft got a friendly defense from the bench. The claims were essentially tossed out on a technicality. The judge ruled that four of the claims weren't filed in a timely manner. Two of the claims remain, including Microsoft's alleged achievement of monopoly power through anticompetitive conduct and alleged exclusionary agreements amounting to restraint of trade.
For its part, Novell is fortunate to have salvaged two of the counts. Let's face it, Microsoft is no longer its bogeyman. Novell's fragmented and newly Linux-devoted business operations face competition from hungry upstarts such as Red Hat
The ruling's impact will barely be perceptible for Microsoft shareholders. Most of the potential cash outlay was already accounted for by legal set-asides last year, and with continued heat from entire continental trade co-ops, Novell's continuing claims are low on Mr. Softy's list of potential legal threats.
For related Foolishness:
- Can Novell save itself?
- Microsoft's creepy crawlies are mostly just a bad trip.
- Catch an exciting installment in the war with Europe.
- For Microsoft, sometimes less is more.
- Sometimes, ya gotta wonder whether Redmond doesn't have too many irons in the fire.