EU Leans on Office Visits, Not Contracts, for Evidence About Intel

Many lessons have been drawn from the U.S. government’s antitrust assault on Microsoft (MSFT) in the late 1990s. Intel’s (INTC) new scrape with the European Union is likely to spark memories of one of the simplest: don’t put it in writing.

The Justice Department struggled to prove some of its points about Microsoft’s behavior. But it didn’t have much trouble attacking the contracts that the software company forged with various partners, such as Internet access providers, to discourage them from promoting the browser software used by rival Netscape. A federal appeals court upheld a lower court’s finding that the pacts were exclusionary and violated antitrust laws.

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