Microsoft is guilty, guilty, guilty

I went to Blockbluster to get a DVD movie to play on my computer. When it came up, it said that I need a file to make the DVD play better (something like that). Then it said that I needed INTERNET EXPLORER TO GET THE FILE. If I did not have Internet Explorer it would take 1 to 5 minutes and INSTALL IT FOR ME. I believe this is crap (but ready to humbly stand corrected if need be). If I recall correctly, there are some animated Web sites that can only be viewed with Internet Explorer but to tell me that only Internet Explorer can download a file is a LIE. I accuse Blockbuster of taking a bribe/payoff from Microsoft to put this statement on their DVD’s. I emailed them for an explanation and received no response. Once I installed Internet Explorer as a backup to Netscape or to view the IE proprietary sites. It overwrote my Netscape, took me a month to put everything back the way I had it. Microsoft is guilty of unfair trading practices, Blockbuster is one of their hired thugs. I hope the judge thrashes them. Go Linux.

In light of that spirited opinion, I have to post the following link:

Microsofties Take a Hard Stance

… in which Microsoft employees act like a husband surprised by divorce papers:

Never attribute to an -ism anything more easily explained by common, human stupidity.

Are you sure it was the DVD telling you you had to launch IE to get the file, or was that Microsoft’s DVD player (bundled with the operating system) telling you that?

“Love 'em, fear 'em, and leave 'em alone.” – Dr. Spockiavelli

Micro$oft, Blockbuster, and AOL are all in bed together…have been for some time. Sure, they have their squabbles, but when it comes down to the bottom line, all’s forgiven.

Whether what they do is illegal or not is not for me to decide (but they’d be damn unhappy to have me on the jury.) And none of those 3 companies will ever directly receive a penny from me.

This is what I see happening: MS gets hurt by the lawsuits. Later, the same happens to AOL. Blockbuster gets away without a scratch.


Sorry: to actually reply to your question, it would be possible for BlockBuster to package its DVDs in such a way that you required IE (basically, checking to make sure that you have IE and refusing to play if you don’t). However, the DVD format has nothing to do with IE or proprietary Microsoft file formats, so yes, it’s bullshit.

However, it might not be BlockBuster’s fault. This is a WAG, but the integration of IE with Windows means that many Windows functions (especially advanced ones) are IE functions at the same time, and lacking IE means lacking the function altogether. Ergo, you have to have IE to play the movie properly (or at all), and BlockBuster is an innocent victim of your wrath.

Never attribute to an -ism anything more easily explained by common, human stupidity.

I’d have to guess that it’s not any fault of Blockbuster. They probably get the exact same DVD that the consumer market gets. In which case, blame the studios, not the renter.

It wouldn’t happen to have been a Dreamworks movie, now would it?

Don’t know if it’s the case here, but actually, there are many cases where Blockbuster and other large corporate video emporiums get things that they can exclusively offer a consumer, that a small chain or independent store cannot get.

I remember a local indy store in NYC saying that it created a monopoly and took the video company to court over it, but the powers that be sided with the folks with the $$$$$.

Yer pal,

AOL severed their relationship with Microsoft’s IE some time ago, and purchased Netscape, the competing product, instead. I doubt they’re too chummy. There also is some controversy involving AOL’s Instant Messenging technology.

Satan said:

I’ve heard of Blockbuster refusing to carry certain titles, becuase of their content and blockbuster was a family friendly store w/o the curtained off room in back and all that. In some cases, IIRC, the producers have gona ahead and reedited the film so that they can sell to blockbuster.

That said, I don’t think the DVDs they’re getting would be any different than the ones that the consumer market gets. They generally have such a small selection of them at each store that it wouldn’t seem to make economic sense to make studios create 2 versions. And if they did have issues with the content, they could just not carry the title, and hardly anyone would notice.

Wow, I’m sounding like a blockbuster apologist. Eww. Really, I’m just trying to put blame where it’s due (Microsoft).

I’ll have to agree with hansel on this one. The process of installing IE incidentally installs a large number of upgrades to Windows, and what the player is (indirectly) telling you is that it needs one or more of those upgrades to operate. There are ways to get them without installing the latest greatest IE but you have to dig a lot and know what you’re doing.

That said, I can’t see any way they’d release an IE only version for BlockBuster. I play DVDs in a DVD player that’s sitting on top of the TV set and it certainly doesn’t have IE, Netscape or even Windows in it.

Supernerd, I have run DVD’s from that store in the past so, if it is valid, I think it is some new feature,.DLL or something I need to get. My point is that if they told me where it is. I and my trusty Netscape can go it. My irritation is that they demand that I do it with IE. The DVD shuts down if I say no to the IE installation.

They’re more chummy than you might suspect.

AOL has not severed their relationship with MSIE…in fact, that is the ONLY browser that AOL directly supports.

Sure, you can run NetScape through AOL, but you’ll never get AOL to provide tech-support for it. They consider it to be 3rd party software. If you’re having trouble webbing from AOL, their Tech-Support will direct you to Keyword: 128BROWSER–which provides only MSIE5.

That IM thing? A minor tussle over a free service…means nothing to either company once money becomes involved.



Exactly. And, the way the dreaded Microslob distributes these is to bundle them in with IE. As I understand it, this was the point of the lawsuit they just lost. As I said, you can get the new DLL or something alone if you’re prepared to spend a day or two at their web site and have a deep understanding of what you’re doing. Be warned, though, it’s not for the faint of heart.

I’d suggest starting with the latest version of Media Player, install that and see if it helps. You might have to get a new version of COMCTL32 - this one is a (sorry) bitch to find and even worse to install. The point is, yes: Microsoft=evil empire. Their corporate strategy from day one was to buy/borrow/copy/steal other people’s technology and then try to convince the world that they invented it. They are (were) on a campaign to convince the world that they invented the Web, IE 5.0 is part of the grand strategy.

For the record, I use Netscape too, but have installed every version of IE since 3.0 with no trouble. If it offers to become your default browser, just say ‘No’. Make sure you install it into a directory that you specify (and that doesn’t look anything like your Netscape directory). Read every dialog box and understand what it’s asking.

Microsoft needs to get a big slap, and they will eventually. Maybe sometime this spring, if not, sometime later.

Microsoft & BB have a deal wher eyou can rent a y2k prepareness video for free & you get a cdrom with the necessary update files for your computer. cool.