DOJ Asks for Extension of Microsoft Antitrust Judgment

The U.S. Department of Justice has asked a U.S. judge to extend her antitrust judgment against Microsoft by at least 18 months in order to give the company enough time to fix problems in technical documentation required in a communication protocols licensing program.

The DOJ on Thursday filed documents asking Judge Colleen Kollar-Kotelly of the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia to extend her oversight of the Microsoft antitrust settlement. The antitrust order, originally scheduled to expire in November 2007, has already been extended by two years because of complaints about the state of the technical documentation.

The DOJ's request comes after the agency asked for an extension of the part of the judgment dealing with technical documentation in 2006. The DOJ, in 2007, opposed an extension of the entire judgment, even though two groups of states that had joined the DOJ in suing Microsoft had asked for a five-year extension. (This paragraph was corrected at 2:26 p.m. Pacific Time on April 17, 2009)

Under the settlement, Microsoft is required to license the communication protocols to other IT vendors interested in developing server software that works with Microsoft's Windows operating system. As of March 31, there were 719 identified problems in the technical documentation, according to an antitrust status report filed Thursday.

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