Editorial: Regulating Microsoft

Microsoft’s resounding defeat in a European antitrust case establishes welcome principles that should be adopted in the United States as guideposts for the future development of the information economy.

The court’s decision puts Europe at the cutting edge of technology regulation. Considering the global nature of the technology industry, the principles set in Europe could set the bar for products developed and sold around the world. The scrutiny of regulators appears to have already produced some positive results. Responding to complaints by Google that it would use the search box in its new version of Internet Explorer to steer users toward the MSN search engine, Microsoft made it fairly easy for consumers to choose which search engine to use with the feature.American regulators — who have reacted to the European court decision as if it were a mortal blow against capitalism itself — should embrace it as a healthy step in the growth of the information economy.

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