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RealNetworks sues Microsoft

Written by Petteri Pyyny (Google+) @ 22 Dec 2003 10:18 User comments (8)

RealNetworks sues Microsoft Streaming media provider RealNetworks sued Microsoft on antitrust charges on Thursday. According to Real Microsoft is using its Windows monopoly to restrict PC manufacturers from installing alternative media players on pre-installed computers.
Real's General Counsel Bob Kimball estimates that the damages suffered by the company could exceed $1 billion in lost business. In addition to compensation to the damages the lawsuit also seeks an injunction against Microsoft to stop it from misusing its monopoly.

Microsoft downplayed Real's allegations and stated that the intense competition in the digital media marketplace shows that all parties have been successful. According to Microsoft Real's own growth figures in fact show that Real has thrived on Windows and other platforms.

Microsoft has faced several antitrust lawsuits in the past, and is currently under investigation by the European Union.


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8 user comments

122.12.2003 18:43

This is why the TCPA can never exist. If Microsoft gets its way and the TCPA is unvailed upon all consummers it only means failure for anyone else who wants to compete with Microsoft. Microsoft also told PC manufactures that they cannot install Windows and Unix in the same box and from what I understand that if a user decides to install Unix and make a doul boot so that they can boot Windows XP that it voids all warrenties for their PC. This activity is crap and we need to get back to our roots when it comes to computing and have an open source envirnment. Voodoohippie

224.12.2003 11:44

who cares...real player sucks anyways. Streaming mp3s and streaming AVIs and quicktime files are so much better that real player formats anyways.

328.12.2003 10:21

Microsoft sells computers? I dont think so. uhm if a user bought a store bought pc I dont think that user would be that sophisticated to also use Unix. and if that user is then why? and what does it have to do with real player? I used to use real player till they went to this pop up add real one player it sucks. Quicktime and windows media player are way better. even divx player is better...LOL.

429.12.2003 13:08

I say anything past Real Player 8 has made the company lose buisness...not Microsoft. Real is just lookin for somebody to point a finger at. How bout your new Ad supported Real One is the gayest thing the internet has ever seen. And how dare any sites use its format. Every stream I see; well lets just say i freakin cant, cause the damn thing is too pixalated (if thats really a word). Boooo u Real..BOOOO!

51.1.2004 15:25

Keep in mind that Real networks merged with and is the owner of Rhapsody. Rhapsody uses technology to make the service available to the public. This is why it is important that Micorsoft gets sued. I already know that the Real Player sucks but as I stated Microsoft wants to control everything and that is why i brought up the Unix subject. It is a very important point in the scheme of things. If MS is to continue its actions then it will be a very bad environment for the users involved in computers. So I say never support companies that want full control of information. Voodoohippie

63.1.2004 7:22

Not exactly related to the lawsuit, but the actions of RM have pissed me off so royally that I thought I would share..... There follows the text of my message to RM. It appears as if you installed the aol broadband connection utility on my system without my explicit consent. I am surmising this because the utility appeared immediately after I had installed Real Player. There may be some small print buried somewhere amongst the EULA forms and others, but it was well enough hidden that I didn't see it. I know that Real has had some questionable practises in the past (witness the run-in with Steve Gibson at It looks to me as if this is yet another example of some borderline behavior that I find wholly unacceptable. Sadly many sites require me to download your product if I wish to access their content. I will be contacting those sites and requesting that they offer their content in different formats so that I do not have to have this piece of software (and its potential hidden data collection) on my system. Regards Christopher Bird

75.1.2004 15:35

Here's a link to an app that will play most "real" content without having to install the damn "real" player.

87.1.2004 21:20

Well I don't know what is worse Microsoft's spyware in their new OS called Long Horn or the spyware in WMP9 in which Spybot can get rid of. In short I don't trust MS but I run an operating system that was made by MS because most PC users do. However I feel that it may change in the future. Remember the TCPA was first introduced by MS. So like I said I feel that the users should have a choice as to whether or not they want to use Realplayer or Windows Media Player 9 or Winamp or whatever. Every player has its querks and every player has its advanteges over the other. It depends on the application that you are applying. And as far as Quick Time goes you would not have that either if MS got their way and QT is yet anouther good media player and format. Now as for the wma format it sucks and the wmv format is not much better for streaming movies. The Real format is a little better sounding at the lower bitrates and Quick Time has its AAC format. And don't forget that MS seems to be trying to snuff out the standard Mp3 format. So this is why I can't stand their anti-trust schemes and someone needs to try and stop them. Voodoohippie

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