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Woman awarded $10k after suing Microsoft for sneaky Windows 10 upgrade

Microsoft denies wrongdoing, insists users have a choice.

Microsoft has really been pushing its Windows 10 platform and for good reason. It has an Xbox App, DirectX 12 support, and other nifty gaming features. But it also has the terrifying HAL-like tendency to take over your machine whether you want it to or not. Many have been critical of Microsoft for strong-arming its upgrade on users and one woman even sued the mega corporation for this practice and came away with $10k.

As reported by the Seattle Times, Teri Goldstein's computer began installing the operating system without her knowledge and it had an adverse effect on her computer. This was especially egregious because she used that computer to run her travel-agency. Goldstein claimed that the machine slowed down so much that it was out of order for days.

"Nobody ever asked me if I wanted to update," said Goldstein, who claimed that prior to this incident she "had never heard of Windows 10."

So she took the Redmond-based giant to court in order to make up for lost wages and get a replacement computer. She won.

Microsoft dropped the appeal last month and awarded her with $10k.

The Seattle Times report noted that "The company denies wrongdoing, and a spokeswoman said Microsoft halted its appeal to avoid the expense of further litigation."

According to Microsoft, the upgrade to Windows 10 is optional, but many have found its persistent pop-ups confusing to reject. In fact, critics like tech journalist Paul Thurrott have noted that clicking the "x" to close a Windows 10 upgrade offer defaults to consenting to the update.

Microsoft has previously defended its practices by stating that upgrading to Windows 10 is optional, and users have 31 days to uninstall it and go back to their previous operating system. Ostensibly this option was not clear to Goldstein.

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Jeffrey Matulef

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Jeffrey Matulef is the best-dressed man in 1984.

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