Microsoft’s EC Complaint About Google

I was reading the blog post over at Microsoft from the fellow… Oh, I forget his name already. Anyway, he was explaining why Microsoft is filing a complaint with the European Commission about Google’s unfair business advantages and whatnot.

At first, this whole thing comes off as a company entering legacy mode. Microsoft reminds me of the RIAA, MPAA and the newspaper industry. They clearly feel the edge is blunted and their technology is dying. They are unable to adapt. As a result they are engaging in a strategy of sue and destroy.

Back to the blog post from the executive. One of the complaints is that Google purchased YouTube in 2006 and has made it difficult, if not impossible, for search engines to index the content. Apparently this is a progressive action.

I do believe that when you are as big as Google, you have a responsibility to allow openness of this nature. However, I’m rather disturbed by the complaint. Essentially, Microsoft is saying that if Google were to put in a robots.txt file on a website they own to block search engines from indexing content this should be illegal. Uhm, what?

A great many people have employed the use of robots.txt throughout the web’s history to prevent indexing of pages. Could Microsoft’s complaint set a precedent for companies complaining about the use of robots.txt to force the hands of web masters?

I’m just asking the question. Sometimes I wish Microsoft would just quit whining and get back to making great software like they used to. It seems more and more that will just not happen. When a big company out-innovates them or outsmarts them in business, their first reaction is to sue.

Reminds me of the RIAA, MPAA and the newspaper industry. Get back to solving hard problems, Microsoft. Stop wasting your time and money on lawsuits. Are you a software company or a whiny bitch?