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What's going on with the 360?

So even Steve Ballmer can't get his hands on one. Imagine the sad expressions on all the little Ballmers' faces when he tells them that they can't have a 360 because of the Sarbanes-Oxley rules.

Here's the story.

The Sarbanes-Oxley rules aren't a method of working out the result of a game of cricket when rain interrupts play, as I initially thought, but laws brought in after the scandals at Enron and Arthur Andersen, to name but a few.

Though these rules cover a wide range of issues, the long and the short of it is that Ballmer is subject to the same treatment as everyone else if he wants to buy an Xbox 360 – he can't just whip one off the production line. Of course, he's a busy man, so it looks like the kids are going to have to wait. And presumably they're not allowed a PlayStation.

But what good is this explanation to a young lad who probably has plenty of friends whose fathers queued for hours and pistol-whipped a couple of shop assistants in order to have a relatively quiet Christmas?

If it weren't for obvious issues with compliance, perhaps the Microsoft CEO could nip over to Japan and pick one up there – they don't exactly seem to be selling like hot cakes.

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