A federal judge on Monday rejected class-action status for more than 60 consumer lawsuits pending against Microsoft, but allowed a more limited lawsuit alleging overpricing to proceed.
According to the ruling issued by U.S. District Judge J. Frederick Motz in Maryland, Microsoft would not have to face a class-action consumer lawsuit because it would be difficult to identify a group of plaintiffs who would be considered typical buyers of Microsoft’s software.
Huh? Difficult to identify Microsoft customers? Try looking at 90-95% of the world’s computers. That should be a good place to start. Moron.
We do a little class-action work here and I have to say that I agree with the judge on this one. Most class actions are not designed to help the plaintiff, they are designed to make the lawyers rich! – One case I worked on was for Land Rover. The plaintiffs lawyers wanted a settlement – which consisted of an extension of the Land Rover warranty for existing owners, a $1000 coupon towards a new Land Rover and a $50 Million dollar payment to the lawyers for their “costs”. Land Rover stated that if this were awarded, it would cost them nothing as the warranty was covered by the price of the vehicle, and the $1000 coupon would probably be taken out of the dealers “negotiation” money! In other words – only the lawyers made money! Fortunately, the Judge saw through their arguments and refused class status. In his written ruling he stated that this was a blatent attempt by the plaintiff’s lawyers to get money for nothing!
The problem in the Microsoft case is that most “buyers” get their software with the machine, or only buy upgrades. I note that a class was allowed for people who bought directly from Microsoft. It would be interesting to see who would really benefit from these lawsuits!
Oh, I completely agree. I never expected “average joe windows” to see a dime of any settlement. I was just enjoying the fact that someone has called MS out on their prices and said “hey, don’t you think $300 for Windows is a tad much?” That’s all that I was keeping tabs on the trial for. The only way average people would benefit is if MS takes the hint and drops prices a few bucks. I don’t think that would happen but it would be nice. The real winners are the lawyers on both sides who get paid for a days work either way.