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Microsoft Drops Claim Against US FTC In Activision Blizzard Case

 |  January 8, 2023

Microsoft says it made a mistake last month when it claimed that the very structure of Federal Trade Commission, the agency trying to block its bid for Activision Blizzard, violates the United States Constitution.

Microsoft removed that argument Thursday as it filed a revised — and less incendiary — response to the FTC’s lawsuit to stop the tech giant’s $69 billion gaming acquisition.

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Microsoft’s new filing still argues that its purchase of the creator of Call of Duty, World of Warcraft and Candy Crush would not unfairly stifle competition with other game makers.
But it no longer includes a five-bullet-point salvo claiming that the FTC’s structure and in-house administrative court, where the Activision case is being heard, run afoul of the Constitution, the separation of powers and the due process clause of the 5th Amendment.

 “The FTC has an important mission to protect competition and consumers, and we quickly updated our response to omit language suggesting otherwise based on the constitution,” Microsoft public affairs spokesperson David Cuddy tells Axios.“We initially put all potential arguments on the table internally and should have dropped these defenses before we filed. We appreciated feedback about these defenses and are engaging directly with those who expressed concerns to make our position clear.”