U.S. DOJ takes Apple to trial alleging e-book price-fixing

“Apple Inc goes to trial Monday over allegations by federal and state authorities that it conspired with publishers to raise the price of e-books,” Nate Raymond reports for Reuters.

“The trial pits the maker of the popular iPad and iPhone against the U.S. Justice Department in a case that tests how Internet retailers interact with content providers,” Raymond reports. “‘This case will effectively set the rules for Internet commerce,’ said David Balto, a former policy director for the U.S. Federal Trade Commission.”

Raymond reports, “Apple is going to trial alone after the five publishers agreed to eliminate prohibitions on wholesale discounts and to pay a collective $164 million to benefit consumers… Apple says that it was unaware of efforts by the publishers to conspire before it entered the marketplace, and said when it did, it act independently. It also contends that in the wake of its introduction of the iBookstore, prices have fallen rather than risen from $7.97 on average to $7.34.”

Read more in the full article here.

MacDailyNews Take: Killing real competition for the appearance of competition is just plain stupid.

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37 Comments

  1. Apple is right. But DOj will force their will. They can not be seen losing this case. In DOJ’s eyes, Apple is already guilty and this trail is just standard procedure.

  2. How ever. I do think that book prices are too low. The industry needs to be able to make some money. Most authors does not make any money. They get a fraction of the cover price. People don’t know that. 8 dollars for a book is nothing. 10-12 is incredibly cheap too. For
    God’s sake, let them have at least a little better margin. It is already razor thin. I don’t buy the argument that it should be cheaper because it is digital. You agreed to pay a certain price for the book when it was paper, you didn’t decide the cost up in two, one for the information and one for the paper. It was just “the cost if the book”. I don’t mind paying 10-12 or more for a good book. And that price is still insanely cheap in my mind. Low prices has hurt the industry and the DOJ is enforcing that. The in that should be on trail is Amazon. A company destroying an industry for its own gain. There needs to be competition to amazon. DOJ does not think so.

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