TRIPPING UP THE TITAN

A JUDGE REJECTS BILL GATES' ANTITRUST DECREE, REOPENING THE QUESTION OF WHETHER MICROSOFT SHOULD BE REINED IN

Court documents do not record what Bill Gates said to Anne Bingaman on the telephone last July when the software titan and the trust-busting Assistant Attorney General finally struck a deal. Gates had made little secret of his anger at the Justice Department for looking into Microsoft's empire and the sometimes ferocious tactics it has used to build it. At one point during an earlier antitrust investigation by the Federal Trade Commission, Gates lost his temper and started shouting at the commissioners. It was only after the Justice Department issued a "We'll see you in court" ultimatum-and then let the deadline...

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