IBM's new antitrust muddle

European regulators are looking into whether IBM is unfairly dominating the mainframe market. What, is this 1968? IBM's purchase of Platform Solutions, a 36-person rival which made cheaper versions of IBM's mainframes, would normally be too small to rouse antitrust inquiries. But, amid accusations that IBM bought the firm to quash a rival, regulators are looking into it nonetheless. I'm actually disinclined to believe the conspiracy theories. IBM, under official antitrust oversight for decades, surely doesn't want to invite government officials back in.

More likely: IBM was the only likely buyer for Platform Solutions, which may have been running into financial trouble. One former contractor for the startup tells Valleywag that his work for Platform Solutions went unpaid for months before his contact there dropped out of sight altogether in January.