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About this weblog
Here we'll explore the nexus of legal rulings, Capitol Hill policy-making, technical standards development, and technological innovation that creates -- and will recreate -- the networked world as we know it. Among the topics we'll touch on: intellectual property conflicts, technical architecture and innovation, the evolution of copyright, private vs. public interests in Net policy-making, lobbying and the law, and more.

Disclaimer: the opinions expressed in this weblog are those of the authors and not of their respective institutions.

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In the Pipeline: Don't miss Derek Lowe's excellent commentary on drug discovery and the pharma industry in general at In the Pipeline

Copyfight

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March 28, 2005

Why Microsoft Won't Fight the Broadcast Flag

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According to this refreshingly forthright Seattle Times article, it's because Microsoft knows that the FCC is going to start regulating everything its mission touches, so it had better start playing nice:


Fights over copyrights provide an interesting example of Microsoft's current DC presence and how it switches priorities and sides. ...Only a few years ago, Microsoft opposed the flag, because such an approach attempts to tell software designers what to include and sets limits on the Internet.

But now, Microsoft cannot afford to tick off its fledgling friends from Hollywood, the movie moguls it will need to provide content as it ventures into new video technology.


And of course there are similar reasons why it's Mark Cuban and not Bill Gates who can "afford" to fight for innovation in Grokster -- despite the fact that not so long ago, Gates was the young entrepreneur on the outside looking in.

Update: Ernie Miller weighs in with Microsoft Cozying Up to Washington Regulators.

Comments (2) + TrackBacks (0) | Category: IP Markets and Monopolies


COMMENTS

1. mike liveright on March 28, 2005 5:08 PM writes...

Another possibility is that if the Broadcast flag is implemented it will be easier for Microsoft, as a propriority system to implement and protect than an open system like LINUX.

So if the Broadcast flag is implemented it means that Windows has a competative advantage over LINUX.

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2. Scote on March 28, 2005 5:08 PM writes...

"And of course there are similar reasons why it's Mark Cuban and not Bill Gates who can "afford" to fight for innovation in Grokster -- despite the fact that not so long ago, Gates was the young entrepreneur on the outside looking in."

Gates has always been about what is good for Gates, never about what is good for innovation in general.

He used to say that software patents were bad, then good, now they need "reform." (All while doing everything he can to have the EU pass software patent laws.) It all depends what is good for Gates on any particular day.

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