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Re: The SSSCA, Microsoft's answer to anti-trust?

by Malkavian (Friar)
on Sep 12, 2001 at 17:18 UTC ( #111903=note: print w/replies, xml ) Need Help??

in reply to The SSSCA, Microsoft's answer to anti-trust?

I think a phrase that leaps to mind is cutting off ones nose to spite one's face.
Generally meaning that you notice something that's maybe just not quite how you'd like it to be, and then performing draconian, senseless, and often quite self destructive acts to remedy this original purely subjective and relatively unimportant issue.

A rough sequence of events as I see this occurring is:

This law gets passed, and in the US, MS only software is the order of the day, it being illegal to use anything else.

In Europe, and many other countries, the security schemes in place will be largely incompatible with this new scheme held in law in the US. Germany for one, as I hear, already has a lot of issues with MS, using Unix for many government projects.

The powers that be in Brussels mandate that information needs to be distributable across format in the EU, effectively forcing MS to either open the security protocols to other clients, or simply allow local reverse engineering laws to take precedence and generate clients where necessary for interoperability.

The US starts to drop out of the research scene worldwide, as nobody else uses US legal security stuff for transmission, so sending encrypted material will likely not work to many destinations, or receiving external info will be illegal.

Disillusioned skilled IT professionals will leave the US in droves to other countries after the best and brightest, and who also won't sue them into the ground for sneezing.

End result, US not talking to the world at large, and the world not talking to the US. US has few remaining skilled IT staff, and those are likely employed by MS.
With no incentive to increase, or maintain quality levels, the tech will stagnate in the US to the point it severely lags the rest of the world.

The US cash cow of high tech is slaughtered, and the law is repealed to prevent it entering serious decline.

The fatal flaw with this bill is assuming that legislating something in the US as contraversial as this, automatically makes it world policy. I don't see that happening.. And the policy makers there could get a very very rude awakening as the reverse of the 'Brain Drain' that the world at large saw, as skilled people all went to the US to persue fame and fortune is reversed, leaving the US impoverished and behind the times in a serious way..

I for one seriously hope they wake up and realise the full ramifications of what they do before they mess things up for everyone..

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