The long-awaited video testimony of Microsoft CEO Bill Gates was finally shown in court on Monday, despite the protests of Microsoft's attorneys, who tried to block its viewing. Microsoft argued that Gates' testimony had been unfairly built up over time and that other videotaped testimonies were not being shown in court. Judge Jackson didn't share their concerns, however.
"We await with some pleasure the videotaped deposition testimony," he said.
While only half an hour of the testimony was shown, the damage was obvious and immediate. Gates, who was obviously pulling the infamous "Regan defense," appears to suffer from memory problems in the testimony, claiming to not remember even the most basic events. The government is using emails from Gates to prove that he is lying, or at least being evasive, in his testimony. In one exchange in the testimony, Gates claims to not have knowledge of the details about his company's relationship with Apple Computer. Email exchanges, however, reveal that Gates took center stage in what the government calls a corporate policy of "bullying" of Apple during 1996 and 1997.
The Gates testimony, which was recorded over three days in August and September, is 20 hours long. It deals largely with the Apple issue and Microsoft's relationship with Sun's Java language. Microsoft is also fighting Sun in court right now over its implementation of Java. Email from Gates is also damning in the case of Java.
"What is our business model for Java?" Gates wrote in 1997 to Microsoft developer Ben Slivka. "How do we wrest control of Java away from Sun?"
When asked about the company's plans to "wrest control of Java away from Sun," Gates replied: "Certainly there was an issue about the popularity of Sun's run-time APIs vs. our run-time APIs."