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Search may be Microsoft's next target, court told

Microsoft may be unlawfully wielding its desktop dominance to put the squeeze on search engines and on document formats like Adobe Acrobat, the state of Massachusetts claimed on Friday.

Massachusetts, the only state government still pursuing antitrust claims against Microsoft through the federal courts, made its allegations in a legal filing with U.S. District Judge Colleen Kollar-Kotelly in Washington, D.C. "If Microsoft is taking steps to hobble the competitive effectiveness of these rival products and thereby supplant them, such serial killing of competing technologies is a serious and troubling prospect," read the three-page filing, which offered no details.

In addition, Massachusetts charged Microsoft with demonstrating "troubling business behavior" that could run afoul of existing court orders. This move comes as the battle for Web search dominance is heating up, with Yahoo saying on Wednesday that it will drop Google's technology in favor of its own. At the same time, Microsoft is trying to find ways to make more money from Web searches by integrating such features more closely into its Windows operating system.

News source: C|Net News.com

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