A federal judge on Friday has ordered Microsoft’s CEO, Steve Ballmer, to testify in a class-action legal suit over the marketing program for promoting Microsoft’s Windows Vista, under which computers with older OS were allegedly sold to customers as “Vista capable” machines that could run basic version of the operating system only.
According to the documents released, Marsha Penchman, a US District Court Judge, said that the Microsoft chief has key information of the facts surrounding the lawsuit, therefore he should face questioning.
The court order further instructed Ballmer to meet the plantiffs’ lawyers within 30 days, at the time and place of his choice, and the deposition time will not be more than three hours.
Microsoft had tried to exclude Ballmer from questioning, claiming that he had no key information about the “Vista capable” program that the company ran in 2006, ahead the launch of Windows Vista OS.
However, the company purported that its former execs, Will Poole, then-senior VP, who left the company in September 2008, and Jim Allchin, then co-president, who left Microsoft in January 2007, were the key people most responsible for decisions about the marketing campaign.
Plantiffs had won the argument to depose Ballmer in the wake of emails exchanged between Ballmer and Intel’s CEO Paul Otellini, discussing essential changes in Vista capable requirements.