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FreeHand Forum • View topic - 1995: FTC rules against FreeHand-Adobe merger
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1995: FTC rules against FreeHand-Adobe merger

Philosophical, ethical, political and legal discussion about FreeHand.

1995: FTC rules against FreeHand-Adobe merger

Postby FFH Thü » Mon Jan 03, 2011 12:29 am

(A post by FFH Mark, from our previous Q&A forum)

What changed between 1994 and 2005?

Trying to get a handle on the legal particulars that determined Adobe's ability to acquire FreeHand in 1994 vs 2005 (1994 being unsuccessful due to a "licensing agreement between Altsys and Aldus). Maybe it was only due to a license dispute between 2 companies (with Adobe stepping in as mediator) and not anti-trust related? But then why would the FTC have gotten involved? See more: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Macromedia_FreeHand

FreeHand is very similar in scope, intended market, and functionality to Adobe Illustrator. It was created by Altsys and licensed to Aldus, which released versions 1 to 4. When Aldus merged with Adobe Systems, because of the overlapping of market with Illustrator, Adobe returned FreeHand to Altsys soon after the merger (after some legal wrangling, and intervention by the Federal Trade Commission). Altsys was later bought by Macromedia, which released FreeHand 5.0, 5.5 (Mac only), 7, 8, 9, 10 and 11/MX. In 2005 Adobe acquired Macromedia, thus returning the FreeHand product to Adobe. -------- http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Altsys

Altsys' best known product that was basically rebranded Virtuoso, that was licensed to Aldus Corporation under FreeHand name, was a vector drawing program that competed with Adobe Illustrator. It was published for many years, originally only on the Macintosh, then also for Microsoft Windows. When Aldus was acquired by Adobe, the licensing agreement that Altsys had with Aldus precluded FreeHand from being part of the deal, so the publishing rights reverted back to Altsys.

http://www.accessmylibrary.com/coms2/su ... 293159_ITM

San Francisco -- Adobe Systems Inc. has stepped into the fight between Aldus Corp. and Altsys Corp. over FreeHand, but the graphics giant apparently has had no luck effecting a solution. FreeHand developer Altsys in April filed a lawsuit against Aldus arguing that Aldus' proposed merger with Adobe violates a licensing contract between Seattle-based Aldus and Altsys, based in Richardson, Texas (see MacWEEK, April 18, Page 1). Despite earlier assertions that it would not become involved in the dispute, Mountain View, Calif.-based Adobe is now Altsys' primary contact for negotiations, said Altsys CEO Jim Von Ehr. Von Ehr and Adobe Chief Financial Officer Bruce Nakao confirmed that the companies had discussed the possibility of Altsys buying back the rights to FreeHand. Negotiations broke down last week, however, according to Von Ehr.
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Re: 1995: FTC rules against FreeHand-Adobe merger

Postby Rodi » Sun Feb 06, 2011 1:53 am

I was most surprised that Quark did not step in and take Freehand. They had been marketing the two for a while before (Buy Quark and FH) to fight against CS.

All you can do is shake your head. The reasons why not Freehand was simple in my mind, it did one exceedingly far better than the Adobe product and it is also a great page layout program. Think about Freehand, it is a great page layout program without even realizing it. Add to that it is a better type handling program, it has the best Hyphenation Justification (H&J) setup on the market.

Oh yeah, it draws better than illustrator too.

Try this in Illustrator Draw a box then make different corner radius's. Can't do that, can they?
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Re: 1995: FTC rules against FreeHand-Adobe merger

Postby FFH Mark » Mon Feb 07, 2011 7:16 pm

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