Give an inch, and they’ll take a foot.
Last week Microsoft (MSFT) confirmed that users can take IE out of Windows 7, a move we can only assume is a response to the ridiculous EU antitrust investigation initiated at the request of Norwegian browser company Opera.
But now Opera CEO Jon von Tetzchner is saying good start — but demanding Microsoft go farther.
Betanews: If Microsoft were to relent all the way, or if it found itself having to do so by virtue of the outcome of this latest European Commission affair, then who decides how that alternative is presented to the user? Do we leave it to Microsoft, or do we appoint some independent person to say, “OK, we need to make space for Firefox and Safari…and oh yes, Opera?”
Von Tetzchner: I don’t think Microsoft will do that without being requested to do so. I don’t think that’s very likely. So any kind of solution then has to come out of the European Commission case, which is ongoing. I think clearly, it is a question of giving users choice, and how you list that — it should be as transparent and easy as possible for the end users to have a choice, so that different browsers have equal visibility.
We have no idea how far Brussels will reach in its meddling with Windows. But if Microsoft hoped to placate its enemies with a good-faith gesture by making IE removable, it looks likes the company failed to earn any goodwill.