RISC OS fan in legal hot water over spoof websiteBy Chris Williams. Published: 14th Feb 2006, 22:24:40 | Permalink | Printable
David versus the OFT and MicrosoftA bungled protest against Microsoft and the Office of Fair Trading has led to a legal showdown between a RISC OS user and the government. Campaigning Tarquin Mills, 32, registered oft.me.uk earlier this month and turned it into a carbon copy of the official OFT.gov.uk website. The RISC OS enthusiast, pictured right, then filled his site with articles lampooning what he believes is the OFT's inaction against Microsoft's dominant position in the personal computer market. The site also includes a screenshot of Oregano showing what appears to be the official OFT website suffering downtime.
Within days of the site going live, the Norwich based programmer was told to remove the spoof website and hand over the domain to the OFT. Tarquin changed the website to just display the hoax press releases without using the OFT's official HTML design, but it's understood lawyers acting on behalf of the government accused him of stalling for time. The .me.uk website is still online, and according to paperwork seen by drobe.co.uk over the weekend, treasury solicitors have been instructed to seek an injunction from the courts to shut down the spoof website, citing copyright infringement and defamation.
"The OFT should start an investigation into Microsoft's 95% and growing monopoly," said Tarquin, who grew frustrated after his letters to the OFT led nowhere.
"In protest at their lack of action, I created a website. What was the OFT's response? Start an investigation? No. The government have just sent me a legal threat."
Tarquin, who stood as a UKIP candidate and previously campaigned against Microdigital, vowed on Saturday to fight the government in court but refused to comment further. The OFT has declined to comment on individual cases.
Man's website protest against Microsoft from The Norwich Evening News
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