Is the FTC Rightfully Going After Microsoft Due to Recent Gaming Layoffs?

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Hosts of the Windows Weekly podcast, Paul Thurrott, Richard Campbell, and Leo Laporte, engaged in a spirited debate about the Federal Trade Commission's (FTC) legal challenge to Microsoft's acquisition of Activision Blizzard. The FTC is attempting to block the $69 billion merger approved by a federal judge last year.

In the segment, Thurrott argued that the FTC is overstepping and trying to "relitigate" a case they already lost in court. He claimed the agency has been "off the rails" in its scrutiny of Microsoft and this deal, calling their latest complaint about Microsoft laying off Activision employees "nonsense."

Laporte pushed back, saying it's the FTC's "job" to ensure companies adhere to any agreements made prior to merger approvals. He stated that if Microsoft made representations about how the merged business would operate and is now not abiding by those, the FTC has a duty to hold them accountable.

Campbell mostly agreed with Thurrott, suggesting the FTC's actions seem irrational and it would be nearly impossible for Microsoft to promise no layoffs during a massive merger. Thurrott cited the FTC partnering with the UK's Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) to make "baseless" arguments about Microsoft controlling cloud gaming.

The spicy exchange highlighted the controversial nature of this case and the complex balance between corporate consolidation and protecting consumers. With the FTC continuing its pressure despite Microsoft's court victory, the legal fight over one of the biggest tech acquisitions ever is definitely not over yet.

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