back to article Bill Gates advice to UK wannabes? Don't get sued

Bill Gates performed the London leg of his farewell tour this morning, telling aspiring entrepreneurs they should sign up to Microsoft's CRM platform and to try not to get sued. Gates took to the stage at the Institute of Directors as the Eighties soft rock classic The Final Countdown played in the background. He threw out …


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  1. Mike Crawshaw
    Paris Hilton

    I'm sorry?????

    'And on Google, he said its advertiser-supported biz model was not "a charitable act".'

    This is Bill "if you have money I want it" Gates talking about someone else not being charitable??? Ay Caramba... even Paris would be stunned into silence by that one.

  2. Eddie Edwards
    Gates Horns

    Lucky bill

    "There's certainly been stressful points along the way – try not to get sued by anybody... especially not your own government... especially if unjust."

    He must be happy then. He only got sued by his own government with just cause.

  3. eddiewrenn

    Bill Gates said; answered; exclaimed; stressed; discussed; quipped...

    When asked if he would run for president Gates quipped: "I'm certainly not going to do it."

    Good quip Bill!

    Joke Alert as I'm the Joke Police

  4. Martin Owens

    Pft, Nevar

    I find it humorous that what Gates says is only slightly less daft than his mate Bloody Bonkers Balmer. I mean seriously why does Billy boy get a nice trip to No. 10 and yet Alan Cox never gets to hob nob?

    There are serious issues in the UK about the governments software policies being set my Microsoft instead of common sense. And every time Bill Gates visits No. 10 the corruption is guaranteed.

  5. Alan Lukaszewicz

    Of course he should!

    Of course BG should run for President.

    The USA needs him and the world needs him.

    In this short event usually called "life" an individual happens along, circumstances fall into place and brilliance happens.

    Q: BG for president?

    A: Of course!

  6. Charles Manning

    Google a charitable act?

    If he really thinks that then MS are more screwed than I ever imagined.

  7. Morely Dotes

    @ Bill Gates

    "There's certainly been stressful points along the way – try not to get sued by anybody... especially not your own government... especially if unjust."

    Well, Bill, at least you needn't worry about the latter point. You've been sued quite justly for abusing Microsoft's de facto monopoly position.

    So that's all sorted, then.

  8. Alan Lukaszewicz

    Of course he should!

    Of course BG should run for President.

    The USA needs him and the world needs him.

    In this short event usually called "life" an individual happens along, circumstances fall into place and brilliance happens.

    Q: BG for president?

    A: Of course!

  9. Christoph Silver badge


    Google's business model isn't "being a charity"? Who could ever have guessed?

  10. Anonymous Coward
    Gates Horns

    Thanks for all the fish

    Last week the government was full of it, about the security of online tax filing, most people failed to join the dots to online tax credits that was taken down due to insecurity in December 2005 and is still down - but will be up soon... (think about information and money flow if it's all getting to complicated for you). The Register as early as 2002 highlighted the fact that it wasn't the government gateway but the Microsoft gateway, but still Gordon Brown is giving him the time of day.

    I'm looking forward to some big announcement further stitching up the rest of us, which will require us to use Microsoft products in order to interact with public services.

    I'm sure it's all good for us - we might buy food with the money otherwise.

  11. Alan Lukaszewicz


    ps - it is almost worthwhile becoming an American citizen purely to vote in an election in which the aforesaid and aforementioned person is a candidate.

    The USA needs it, Europe needs it, the world needs it?

    C'mon BG - do the biz?

  12. Anonymous Coward
    Gates Horns

    Google ad revenue not a 'charitible act'

    Yes, and this means what in business - especially in the light of the alleged Microsoft operating system monopoly (probably justified to some extent) and alleged refusal to let software companies look at the code so as to be better able to make their competing software run on a computer with Windows installed as an OS?

    Cheap, low level flame IMO.

  13. Stan

    Going out... a wave of FUD.

  14. Slaine

    Parting is such sweet sorrow

    Bye Bill, nice being had by you.

  15. Juillen

    Why run for president..

    And worry about the elections when you can simply buy all the politicians you need to get the law changed the way you want it without having to bother with all that effort of getting elected?

    Damn, if you were ever elected, you'd only end up responsible and accountable! Where's the fun in that?

  16. Anonymous Coward

    I think...

    I think that uncle Bill needs to get out while they have a good spring clean, Vista is a failure despite whatever stats say otherwise.

    It is not just a technical failure but a marketing one, the pricing to just greedy and each more expensive version should have ALL the features of the underlings. Read any technical forum and you will find error after error which in a commercial environment is just not worth it. Couple that with the training issue and there is no way we will upgrade. If we have to go through that we might as well go for Ubuntu Linux and at least have some cost savings.

    MS needs a couple of years to produce a fast OS that is more compatible with XP and one that actually out performs XP. Perhaps MS developers need to be given old doggy PC's so they realise the impact of their naff coding, either way I want a lean and mean OS, one that extends the life of my existing hardware and one that does NOT have thousands of things done differently for the sake of it. One should be able to upgrade from XP and thus leave Vista as a "cul de sac". (think MiIllenium edition)

    The question is can Microsoft be brave enough to admit it? If not uncle Bill may be brought back in a few years to clean up the mess.

    I would start by extending the life of XP and get to work on the producing the Vista replacement for 2009/10.

  17. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Bill Gates will be forever hated

    Becouse he - unlike us - is a winner. He won.

    He made a fortune.

    He stood down whilst still making a fortune.

    And now he is too lead a life as a corporate philanthopist.

    He won. Got to the end of the game, grinned and went well ---- you losers, HAHA.

    I dont' see why people get their panties in such a twist, it's a market, there are dominante players and they change from era to era. MS is slowly shrinking. There are only so many times you can sell the same thing but slower. But that doesn't matter to Bill, he's done.

    In a decade it'll be a different company, who knows who, that'll win a war that'll shape the face of a new technology era.

    That's just how society works.

  18. Mark

    "He made a fortune"

    Well, that's easy when your parents are loaded.

  19. Chika

    @ Anonymous Coward re: Bill Gates will be forever hated

    Actually, it's worse than that. He won, not by giving us anything better.

    He won because we let him.

  20. System 10 from Navarone

    Bill's greatest achievement by a long way... convincing the (mainly non-IT) public that he's some sort of rich but friendly harmless nerd with a 'vision' and a love for technology.

    But beneath the crap sweater exterior is, first and foremost, a very greedy, very shrewd businessman who always did his utmost to thwart common open standards and would stoop to anything to maintain a corporate monopoly that's cost millions of people more dearly than they'll ever appreciate.

    Hate him because he's a 'winner'?!? I suppose he is a 'winner' in the 'Stalin' sense of the word.

  21. Chris Cheale

    I think...

    > Google's business model isn't "being a charity"? Who could ever have guessed?

    I kinda think that's the point he was making - with all the uber-fuzzy good feeling that seems to surround the Googleplex and their "do no evil" motto - some people seem to overlook the fact that Google is the biggest, most successful online advertisement broker in the world.

    I'm no Gates fanboi - but really, GW Bush or Billy G? Unfortunately Bill Gates is smart enough not to take the demotion to presiding over only one single country - he's "retiring" instead.

  22. Donkey

    Market Economics

    All this negative stuff about MS and uncle Bill is way off target.

    They are entitled to sell their software at whatever price they think it is worth. The fact that so far it has continued to sell very well is not Bill Gates' fault it is the fault of the mugs who buy it (of which I am one).

    The solution is simple don't buy it! There are plenty of free or low cost alternatives out there that are in most cases better than the MS alternative; Firefox, Thunderbird and Open Office to name a few. More importantly don't upgrade all the bloody time, it is unnecessary to buy something just because it is new. I'm typing this using windows 2000, I have office 2000 and when I "upgrade" it will be to the excellent free alternative open office which I am starting to use on my home machine. There is no great advance or utility in having the latest microsoft office suite. The differences between the older and "newer" versions are mainly cosmetic, they make their money because millions of people trot out sheep-like and buy it... why?

    You are all the people who made Bil Gates wealthy by buying his products, so stop doing it. Don't just whinge about the man.

  23. SImon Hobson Silver badge

    @ Donkey

    Sorry, but you seem confused - using "Microsoft" and "Market economics" together.

    Microsoft got where they are by making sure that market economics does not (or at least didn't) apply in the IT world. Don't forget that they have been found guilty several times of using illegal and unethical business practices to make sure that there was no viable alternative.

    History is littered with the corpses of small businesses they forced out of business and stole technology from - the typical M.O. being to incorporate the competitors technology into Windows, and when the small company sues, they just drag it out until the small business runs out of cash, folds, and the problem goes away.

    Alternatively, they deliberately make their own systems non-standard and keep moving the goalposts to prevent real competition - this is what the EU case was all about, their deliberate and calculated policy of making sure that nothing but a Microsoft server will work properly with a Microsoft client, and nothing but a Microsoft client will work properly with a Microsoft server.

    Yes, businesses round the world SHOULD have seen what was coming, but they fell for the marketing and spin (and even in the early days, some good products) - I've worked for management that are so brainwashed that they really believed themselves when they said "people send me Excel spreadsheets, therefore I must have Excel". Many years ago I was, and I claim no originality for this, warning that allowing Microsoft to dictate what people use was the equivalent of simply writing them a series of blank cheques to fill out and cash whenever they feel like it.

    Hopefully, the combination of the EU case making the protocols more accessible, and the backlash over Vista will dampen their dominance and we can slowly start to get back to a market where users can choose on the basis of cost and features instead of commercial blackmail.

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