This was apparently reported first by a few months ago, but I spotted it in an article today on

“AOL released version 7 on Oct. 16, nine days before Microsoft shipped Windows XP. For the first time in five years, AOL’s client software was not bundled with Microsoft’s latest operating system. Negotiations between AOL and Microsoft over bundling reportedly broke down last summer over conflicts including AOL’s use of the RealNetworks media player.

“AOL considered responding to the threat posed by XP through several strategies, including one labeled “Stall XP Adoption,” according to a document alleged to be an internal AOL memo and published by the site.

“‘Until AOL can develop an appropriate XP solution, message to AOL members and the public that XP is `not ready’ for broad adoption (i.e., has bugs, will not run AOL, will not run your existing software, will violate your online privacy, etc.),’ read the April 18 memo, according to BetaNews.”

So some of the malicious attacks on Windows XP were imaginary – and spread by America Online as an anticompetitive tactic. Keep this kind of thing in mind when you read more of the endless whining about Microsoft’s “unfair” tactics.

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