Thursday, July 23rd 2009

Intel Appeals Against EU Antitrust Verdict

Earlier this year in May, the European Commission for anti-competitive practices found Intel guilty of various antitrust practices. The company was then slapped with a massive 1.06 billion Euro (US $1.45 billion) fine, the single largest antitrust fine it has ever meted out to a company. On Wednesday, Intel explored its legal option of appealing against the fine with Court of First Instance in Luxembourg, Europe's second highest judicial body. The company argues that the EC regulator failed to consider the evidence that supported Intel's contention during the trial.

In a telephone interview with ComputerWorld, Robert Manetta, an Intel spokesperson said "We believe the Commission misinterpreted some evidence and ignored other pieces of evidence." Meanwhile, apart from the fine Intel is expected to pay within three months of the verdict, the ruling also puts a stop to Intel's rebates to PC manufacturers and retailers on condition of near or total exclusivity, among several other deemed malpractices. Authorities in South Korea and Japan found similar irregularities in Intel's marketing methods, while the U.S. Federal Trade Commission and New York Attorney General's office are investigating the company for abuse of its monopoly position.Source: ComputerWorld
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307 Comments on Intel Appeals Against EU Antitrust Verdict

#1
Sugarush
FordGT90Concept said:
The fine must be addressed to both parties, not just one. Both parties are equally guilty of the "crime."




If Intel is guilty, it takes two to tango. Only one fine was issued so the partner in crime is missing. Also, if Intel is guilty, the fine needs to be based on the crime, not the situation of the subjects involved (e.g. if a movie star crashes into your ride, they need only pay the amount in damages based on the value of your car, not their net worth).

Whomever is pushing these charges need to show that AMD lost x amount of money because of this contract. That not only helps in determining the fines for Intel and "manufacturer C," it also dictates how much compenstation AMD deserves. AMD was the victim, after all.

So, even assuming Intel's guilt, everything else doesn't fall in place as it should.



In many ways, the government was the victim of the mafia. The mafia took over the role of the government and beating back the mafia meant the government was taking back control. It cost the government (city and federal) a lot money to right the wrong.
Intel was the one who profited from those rebates, so the EU went after them first. As for the OEMs, I agree the should be responsible as well, though maybe the cases will be brought up after the case against Intel will end.

I believe Intel has made about 5 billion U.S. dollars in 2008, so no the EU is not demanding Intel's net worth as a penalty.

Altogether this is not an AMD vs. Intel case, it's an EU vs. Intel case, that's why the EU gets the money.

The fine is a penalty for breaking the law, not a compensation for AMD's lost profits.
Posted on Reply
#2
FordGT90Concept
"I go fast!1!11!1!"
You don't think "manufacturer C" didn't as well? They wouldn't have agreed if it wasn't mutually beneficial.

The case was 2002-2005. Current revenue should not weigh on the court's decision. The EU didn't get shafted, no one did. This is an Intel vs [null] case--unwinable. Whenever you got a [null] case (like death cases with no will), profits go to the state.

Rebates don't violate a law. This contract doesn't violate a law either. EU has a budget problem and found an easy victim. Most likely like seeing the big "bad" corporations getting fined for the sake of the "little guy."


And yes, when the appeal fails to go through, I doubt the EU will see an Intel price cut for a long time. They have to get that money back to make investors happy.
Posted on Reply
#3
$ReaPeR$
Wile E said:
This is not a bribe in my eyes. It is a rebate attached to an exclusivity deal. Again, I see absolutely nothing wrong with it.

And if it were actually a bribe, the OEMs should be in just as much trouble. Both parties involved in a bribe are equally guilty.
just by offering exclusivity they take out the choice factor and that on its own is unethical, but almost all companies work in that way so by a company's standard its OK to do that :shadedshu
Posted on Reply
#4
Sugarush
FordGT90Concept said:
You don't think "manufacturer C" didn't as well? They wouldn't have agreed if it wasn't mutually beneficial.

The case was 2002-2005. Current revenue should not weigh on the court's decision. The EU didn't get shafted, no one did. This is an Intel vs [null] case--unwinable. Whenever you got a [null] case (like death cases with no will), profits go to the state.

Rebates don't violate a law. This contract doesn't violate a law either. EU has a budget problem and found an easy victim. Most likely like seeing the big "bad" corporations getting fined for the sake of the "little guy."


And yes, when the appeal fails to go through, I doubt the EU will see an Intel price cut for a long time. They have to get that money back to make investors happy.
"Manufacturer C" didn't experience huge losses, due to a price increase from Intel, that was his benefit.

I just wanted to show you how much Intel earns in a year. EU's fine is not even close to that amount, and as you said the case was 2002-2005, 3 years.

If you have any proof that EU is just doing it to get some cash, then I'd like to hear it.
Posted on Reply
#5
Meecrob
dr emulator (madmax) said:
what makes me laugh at all this is ,it's us that will foot the bill by higher prices not intel:shadedshu
well, maby you will, and WileE and others who only buy "the best" personal I will stick with AMD if only to keep the competition alive.

HalfAHertz said:
Just for WileE http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Competition_law

You can scroll down and see the EU and US laws, they are quite similar actually.
wont do any good, Intel can do no wrong, they make the best hardware in the computer world.]

TheMailMan78 said:
Honestly I'm still not convinced this law applied to Intel at the time of their "wrong doing". Hell I don't even think it applies to them now. Also why isn't the EU going after any of the OEM's? When you get busted for soliciting prostitution you AND the hooker go to jail. There is just something very fishy about all this. In the US you can fight something all the way to the Supreme court. In the E.U. it seems like you have the fox watching the chickens. Now I could be wrong so don't jump down my neck but who decides if the E.U. decision is correct?
this depends on where you are, some places I have seen them take both to jail, then let the hooker go, take a guess why?

because they can just use her to catch another john and they make more money that way.

FordGT90Concept said:
You don't think "manufacturer C" didn't as well? They wouldn't have agreed if it wasn't mutually beneficial.

The case was 2002-2005. Current revenue should not weigh on the court's decision. The EU didn't get shafted, no one did. This is an Intel vs [null] case--unwinable. Whenever you got a [null] case (like death cases with no will), profits go to the state.

Rebates don't violate a law. This contract doesn't violate a law either. EU has a budget problem and found an easy victim. Most likely like seeing the big "bad" corporations getting fined for the sake of the "little guy."


And yes, when the appeal fails to go through, I doubt the EU will see an Intel price cut for a long time. They have to get that money back to make investors happy.
if said "rebates" are contingent on anti competitive practices that are covered by the law yes, they do break the law.

Even if intel didnt know about the law(HAHAHA!!!) they are still held accountable to the word of law, ignorance of the law is no defense in any legal system i know of.
Posted on Reply
#6
Meecrob
FordGT90Concept
http://macenstein.com/default/archives/750
Posted by Dr. Macenstein

Let me ask you something.

If I were to sell you a dozen eggs, would you be OK with opening the carton and finding 9 eggs? If a car company were to put up a big sign advertising their new mini van had 100 cubic feet of cargo space, but it actually had about 75, do you think you would have the right to complain? Then why is it we all just accept the misleading way hard drive manufacturers advertise the amount of space on their drives?

What I am referring to is the long-standing, misleading practice hard drive manufacturers use to describe the available free space on their drives via binary math. This is by no means a new problem, but I feel it is is an issue that is becoming more and more relevant as drive sizes expand. For example, in the old days, you might have have a hard drive that was sold to you as 40GB, only to find that once installed, you really only have 37.22GB free. Nowadays, with drive capacities soaring, those 3 missing GB might not seem like a big deal, but as hard drive capacities get larger, so too does the the gap between what you read you were getting in your local computer catalog, and the actual specs provided when you do a “Get Info” on the drive once it’s in your Mac.

For example, 500GB hard drives are quite common these days. However, once you plug that drive into your Mac, you may be unpleasantly surprised to see you really only have 465GB available. Somehow between the store and your house, you lost about 35GB of space! I recently had the pleasure of reviewing a whopping 1Terabyte drive, and while it was thrilling to think I had close to 1000GB in the palm of my hand, I will admit it still annoyed me that what I REALLY had was more like 925GB in there. You may think, well, 925GB is more space than you’d ever need, but that is not the point (oh, and you’d be wrong. I filled that in a month). The point is, the difference between 1000GB and 925GB is 75GB. 75GB is nothing to dismiss lightly (it’s more than the largest iPod can actually hold), and I feel it is a big enough difference to warrant a change in advertising.

Now, before the geek squad begins flaming me about formatting issues, binary math and 1024’s and such, let me just say this. I understand that years ago the hard drive manufacturers got together and decided that consumers were too stupid to understand binary math, so they decided to start rounding off numbers (and in such a way that conveniently gave consumers an inflated perception of their drive’s capacity). My point is, they decided this back when drives topped out at around 5 or 10GB. I think that most consumers these days know what a decimal point is, and they could handle seeing a real world number listed below a hard drive in a catalog. I honestly would have no problem buying a Mac that listed its internal storage as 465.5GB.

Even if the potential differences in capacity that result from the different formatting methods somehow factor in to this intentionally misleading advertising gimmick, it’s not like there are 4000 different ways to format a drive. If manufacturers want to advertise a 500GB drive, then they should have to just put under it (in small writing, like all truth is written) list the actual capacities under the 3 major schemes, FAT32, NTFS, HFS+. And in reality, it’s not like a 500GB drive formatted with FAT32 is going to give you 499.99GB and as NTFS is going to give you 465GB. They are all pretty close, and all closer to 465GB than 500GB.

Change with the times



Where yesterday’s PC user was dealing with 2 kilobyte text files, today’s consumers are handling enormous photo, music, and video collections. Today’s PC user knows that an HD QuickTime movie trailer is 175MB. They understand that each shot from their 9 megapixel digital SLR camera is going to clock in around 5MB. They know a downloaded iTunes TV show takes up 600MB. They know these things, and they are conscious of the amount of free space they have available on their drives. There is no reason to tell them a 465.5GB drive is really a 500GB drive. I say hard drive manufacturers should take a page from the more honest flash media manufacturers, where a 1GB flash card delivers 1GB of storage.

I am not asking for drive manufacturers to adopt a more accessible “base ten” scheme instead of the current binary math used to calculate sizes. I am simply saying give us a little credit. We can handle seeing slightly odd capacity sizes. These ARE computers we’re talking about, remember. Most of us are geeks. We might actually like to tell a friend we have the new 74.5GB iPod.
do i need to get you more?

and its not just MS that labels drives based on BINARY CAPACITY its every sain os out there including mac's. (linux, well different distros show capacity in different ways, but you shouldnt care since you feel linux and any non-windows os is trash.)
Posted on Reply
#7
3870x2
I see all of the in-depth arguments about this, have been reading everyones very valid points over and over, even with meecrob getting sidetracked :toast:, here are my only points:

1. Intel isnt getting "fined" a small deal here, like a slap on the wrist, they are getting it hard and splintered without lubricant. The fine alone erases years of business done in the EU. Europe is hurting, needs the money, and TheMailMan78, FordGT90Concept, Meecrob, W1zzard, Sugarush, Erocker, $ReaPer$, Wilee, HalfAHertz and ME are all going to be splitting that bill.

2. Agreeing with Wilee, I dont believe they did enough to get a fine, Just like a runner, who gets sponsored, gets paid more for his exclusivity. Are you going to fine UnderArmor for that? how about Le Tour De France, are you going to sue LaPierre for doing Lance Armstrong a solid exclusivity deal? Hell, they gave him a bike to wear their stuff.

3. How in the hell did hard drive numbers and calculations get into EU suing Intel?:toast:
Posted on Reply
#8
Meecrob
You may pay for it, I wont be, Intel dosnt have anything I want to buy.

Oh and note how much intel makes per year, this fine is really a drop in the bucket, far less then they made in even one year of doing the crap they are being slapped around for.

and the size track in this case(the hdd thing) is to prove a point and help stop mis-information from being spred around by those who do not have a historical context to put it into.
Posted on Reply
#9
3870x2
Meecrob said:
You may pay for it, I wont be, Intel dosnt have anything I want to buy.

Oh and note how much intel makes per year, this fine is really a drop in the bucket, far less then they made in even one year of doing the crap they are being slapped around for.

and the size track in this case(the hdd thing) is to prove a point and help stop mis-information from being spred around by those who do not have a historical context to put it into.
The money they make per year mostly goes toward expenses, not in their pocket. The end product says that intel doesnt have that kind of money just lying around the office. Not to mention, you are biased against intel? and you are posting here? taboo....
Posted on Reply
#10
Meecrob
im bias against how intel and most companies do business.

MS for example also use bully tactics, and they got/get slapped for it, I guess some intel execs will have to forgo their bonouses or buying new cars for a while if they endup having to pay the fine, poor guys..

If it was AMD in place of intel(places reversed) I would be saying they deserve it, any company that uses unethical tactics to stay on top/keep competitors down deserves it, I just haven't seen AMD do any of that, even against VIA who they could bully if they wanted to.(they are bigger then via after all)

If you break the law, you takes your chances, when you get caught, you shouldnt try to get out of it, and you shouldnt get out of it no matter how much money you have.(not just talking about intel here, but anybody or company)


I sure as hell wouldnt get away with breaking the law, the cops would be on my ass like white on rice, then i would endup in jail and with fines and everything else if i broke the law......
Posted on Reply
#11
TheMailMan78
Big Member
Meecrob said:
You may pay for it, I wont be, Intel dosnt have anything I want to buy.

Oh and note how much intel makes per year, this fine is really a drop in the bucket, far less then they made in even one year of doing the crap they are being slapped around for.

and the size track in this case(the hdd thing) is to prove a point and help stop mis-information from being spred around by those who do not have a historical context to put it into.
Oh you'll be paying for it too. Of course you wont blame it on this but the fact will remain you WILL pay for this somehow. :roll:

We all will.
Posted on Reply
#12
Meecrob
how, I dont tend to upgrade my cpu/mobo that offten, I get something i can push to a nice level and stick with it(god how i hate replacing motherboards)

Oh and yes we all pay for everything in one way or another, I will pay at least enlarge by listening to intel user/lover friends of mine complain about high prices when they want to upgrade :P
Posted on Reply
#13
3870x2
It would be quicker if EU just sent us all a bill for $5-10 each, and bypass the middle-man :roll:
Posted on Reply
#14
Meecrob
lol, i would send them back a bill for wasting my time :P

blah, If only a 3rd company would get out a chip/platform worth supporting, we could support that and let both companies know that they need to get on the ball and stop being stupid/assholes
Posted on Reply
#15
3870x2
Meecrob said:
lol, i would send them back a bill for wasting my time :P

blah, If only a 3rd company would get out a chip/platform worth supporting, we could support that and let both companies know that they need to get on the ball and stop being stupid/assholes
I could say the same about the graphics card market. GO GO S3 Chrome!
Posted on Reply
#16
Meecrob
lol, sad part, if the chrome had come out a couple/few years earlier it would have been a decent product, and multichrome wasnt bad(buddy of mine still plays wow on his HTPC using multichrome)

I wanted PowerVR to become our 3rd option, the kyro was a hell of a chip!!!
Posted on Reply
#17
DaedalusHelios
HalfAHertz said:
Just for WileE http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Competition_law

You can scroll down and see the EU and US laws, they are quite similar actually.
As your link is written a dominant grocery store chain could not hold a sale that sells things lower than an another grocery store chain. Its very vague, just the way abusive governments like it. Any exclusive pricing is not allowed according to the link. Are there no sales in the EU? I think they are using it as a harassment law to hussle money out of companies.

Then if every place charged the same on something they could say it is "price fixing". So anything sold on the mass market could then be subject to fines. That is unless you have EU officials in your pocket at least.
Posted on Reply
#18
FordGT90Concept
"I go fast!1!11!1!"
Sugarush said:
If you have any proof that EU is just doing it to get some cash, then I'd like to hear it.
All the holes in logic of the case are the proof. If you're actually doing this to stop criminal activity, you pursue all the criminals, not just the one with the biggest wallet. It is telling about the motives behind the case.


Meecrob said:
and its not just MS that labels drives based on BINARY CAPACITY its every sain os out there including mac's. (linux, well different distros show capacity in different ways, but you shouldnt care since you feel linux and any non-windows os is trash.)
If I told you to travel 10km towards me but only meant 10m, you'd be 9990m away from me. Improper labeling of anything causes chaos and that's exactly what this is.

A lot of Linux distros do show the proper label to match the calculation. Linux devs are doing it right, Microsoft is still doing it wrong. Just because Microsoft is the largest corporation to not fix their labels doesn't make it right.

You still haven't found a hard drive with a binary MB or GB, have you? I'm patient, I'll wait. :) "GiB" and "MiB" didn't exist prior to 1998 so they will for sure be labeled incorrectly. I'm just curious if such hard drives ever even existed.


3870x2 said:
How in the hell did hard drive numbers and calculations get into EU suing Intel?:toast:
A similar case in the USA where Seagate got sued for Microsoft's bug. The guilty parties aren't always the one to get strung up.
Posted on Reply
#19
Wile E
Power User
$ReaPeR$ said:
just by offering exclusivity they take out the choice factor and that on its own is unethical, but almost all companies work in that way so by a company's standard its OK to do that :shadedshu
I disagree

DaedalusHelios said:
As your link is written a dominant grocery store chain could not hold a sale that sells things lower than an another grocery store chain. Its very vague, just the way abusive governments like it. Any exclusive pricing is not allowed according to the link. Are there no sales in the EU? I think they are using it as a harassment law to hussle money out of companies.

Then if every place charged the same on something they could say it is "price fixing". So anything sold on the mass market could then be subject to fines. That is unless you have EU officials in your pocket at least.
I agree.

And here again, we are still going in circles.
Posted on Reply
#20
Sugarush
FordGT90Concept said:
All the holes in logic of the case are the proof. If you're actually doing this to stop criminal activity, you pursue all the criminals, not just the one with the biggest wallet. It is telling about the motives behind the case.
I meant real proof, not a conspiracy theory.
Posted on Reply
#21
Wile E
Power User
Sugarush said:
I meant real proof, not a conspiracy theory.
Where's your real proof?

This whole issue is "he said, she said". Very little proof from either side.
Posted on Reply
#22
DaedalusHelios
AltecV1 said:
russia is not in eu to your homework before you are trying to look smart:laugh:
I said Russia is in Europe, I did not say Russia is in the EU. The two are different.
Posted on Reply
#23
FordGT90Concept
"I go fast!1!11!1!"
The majority of Russia is in Asia. :laugh:

Sugarush said:
I meant real proof, not a conspiracy theory.
The case isn't clear enough to provide "real proof." We would first have to establish who set up this agreement--was it "manufacturer C" or Intel? We would then have to look at the sales figures to see if AMD really lost out because of this agreement. At least in the USA, anti-competitive behavior in "refusal to deal" cases is determined by the damage done to the competition. Here's an example...
http://www.ftc.gov/bc/antitrust/refusal_to_deal.shtm
Sometimes the refusal to deal is with customers or suppliers, with the effect of preventing them from dealing with a rival: "I refuse to deal with you if you deal with my competitor." For example, in a case from the 1950's, the only newspaper in a town refused to carry advertisements from companies that were also running ads on a local radio station. The newspaper monitored the radio ads and terminated its ad contracts with any business that ran ads on the radio. The Supreme Court found that the newspaper's refusal to deal with businesses using the radio station strengthened its dominant position in the local advertising market and threatened to eliminate the radio station as a competitor.
It could be determined that "manufacture C" arranged the agreement, or Intel, or both. All of which is irrelevant unless AMD was threatened by the deal.
Posted on Reply
#24
DaedalusHelios
FordGT90Concept said:
The majority of Russia is in Asia. :laugh:
Well damn, you would think I would have realised that with a big ass world map mural beside my computer desk on the wall.. :roll:

It will no longer be for decoration now... I will use it for reference. :laugh:
Posted on Reply
#25
Sugarush
FordGT90Concept said:
The majority of Russia is in Asia. :laugh:


The case isn't clear enough to provide "real proof." We would first have to establish who set up this agreement--was it "manufacturer C" or Intel? We would then have to look at the sales figures to see if AMD really lost out because of this agreement. At least in the USA, anti-competitive behavior in "refusal to deal" cases is determined by the damage done to the competition. Here's an example...


It could be determined that "manufacture C" arranged the agreement, or Intel, or both. All of which is irrelevant unless AMD was threatened by the deal.
Intel set the agreements up: they profited from these agreements, the could sell more chips, but most importantly cap AMD's market share establishing a quasi monopoly.

The thing is, it's a case of EU vs. Intel. Hence the fine isn't a compensation of AMD's lost profits but a penalty for breaking the law and hurting consumers. So AMD's lost profit are irrelevant in this case, and so is the US competition law.

Wile E said:
Where's your real proof?

This whole issue is "he said, she said". Very little proof from either side.
So you're saying the whole case is based on hearsay? Don't you think that would be Intel's first line of defense then? ;)

Btw, I thought you didn't wanna post until some new facts come up? :)


Intel offered those rebates which were illegal under competition law of the EU. They were charged and found guilty.
Just because some people don't agree with the law itself they start to come up with conspiracy theories.
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