The Department of Justice has launched an antitrust investigation of IBM. Big Blue’s rivals allege that IBM has engaged in anticompetitive practices in the mainframe market. The complaints spell out practices that echo some of the antitrust problems Microsoft has faced, such as requiring purchasers of IBM’s software to also purchase IBM hardware to run it.
The DOJ and IBM have tangled before – in 1969 the DOJ brought a suit against IBM for monopolizing the computer industry. The investigation lasted over 10 years, into the early 80’s, before being dropped. IBM has said they will cooperate fully in any investigation. I smell billable hours on the horizon!