Microsoft wants home jury for Real antitrust case

Microsoft has asked a judge to move an antitrust lawsuit filed by longtime rival RealNetworks to the state of Washington from California, the world's largest software maker said on Thursday.

Seattle-based RealNetworks filed suit in San Jose, Calif., against Microsoft last month, seeking more than $1 billion in damages. The media software maker said Microsoft unfairly has promoted its own software for playing audio and video on computers and over the Internet. Microsoft, which is based in Redmond, Wash., just outside Seattle, said in a statement that "it makes little sense for a California jury to be asked to resolve a dispute between two Washington-based companies."

San Jose is in the heart of Silicon Valley, near where many of Microsoft's biggest competitors, such as Sun Microsystems and Oracle, are based. "RealNetworks likely perceives that a jury pool in that area would be the most unfavorable to Microsoft," Stacy Drake, a spokeswoman for the company, said in an e-mailed statement. Bob Kimball, RealNetworks' vice president and general counsel, said last month that the suit was filed in San Jose because many of the witnesses are nearby.

News source: C|Net News.com

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