IBM offers bribe to gain Exchange users

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IBM has started a program where they are going to pay consultant companies $20/seat for every company they convert to the Lotus Email server on Linux from Microsoft Exchange. This is a pretty dirty trick, but I’m not too upset because I like to see IBM trying to take the market dominance back from Exchange (everyone knows I’m not a Microsoft fan). According to IDC, Microsoft leads the market share race with 47% over IBM’s 43% (Gartner estimates pretty similar numbers). These numbers kind of surprise me, because I thought Microsoft had a much larger lead.However, I do think this kind of marketing scheme could eventually land IBM in court. Anytime a company tries to coerce companies to move to their products, even if it is just a financial gain, is heading into antitrust realms.