U.S.A. v. Apple: DOJ seeks wide-ranging oversight of iTunes Store

“Apple Inc.’s e-book problem is spilling over into its other media businesses,” Chad Bray reports for The Wall Street Journal.

“After winning its antitrust lawsuit over Apple’s e-book pricing, the Justice Department said Friday it wants to prevent Apple from engaging in anticompetitive conduct across the content sold in its iTunes store, including movies, music and television shows,” Bray reports. “The company has been an aggressive bargainer in opening up traditional media to digital distribution, most notably with music.”

Bray reports, “If the judge adopts the Justice Department’s recommendations, Apple may not have the same leverage when negotiating future content deals as it tries to expand its offerings. ‘Under the department’s proposed order, Apple’s illegal conduct will cease and Apple and its senior executives will be prevented from conspiring to thwart competition in the future,’ said Bill Baer, assistant attorney general in charge of the Department of Justice’s Antitrust Division.”

“Apple blasted the Justice Department’s proposals, saying in a court filing that the proposals were a ‘draconian and punitive intrusion into Apple’s business, wildly out of proportion to any adjudicated wrongdoing or potential harm,'” Bray reports. “The Justice Department is also proposing an external monitor to review Apple’s efforts and a prohibition from entering new e-book contracts for five years that would limit Apple’s ability to be competitive on price. Competing e-book sellers also would be allowed for a two-year period to sell books to Apple users via e-books apps in Apple’s online store. Apple also objected to the DOJ’s suggestion that a monitor be appointed to oversee its compliance with the courts order for 10 years. Apple said that proposal is ‘wholly unjustified by law or fact’ and goes far beyond anything connected with the alleged price-fixing.”

Read more in the full article here.

MacDailyNews Take: Here’s hoping Apple hits a judge with a spine (and a brain attached) somewhere along the appeals process.

Might we suggest Apple using the judicial system’s top feature: Glacial pace? Drag this fiasco past high noon on January 20, 2017 and perhaps Apple’s chances will improve. Hey, it works wonders for Samsung!

Related articles:
Apple rejects U.S. DOJ’s proposed e-book penalties as ‘a draconian and punitive intrusion’ – August 2, 2013
U.S.A. v. Apple: DOJ wants to force Apple to revamp e-book practices – August 2, 2013
U.S.A. v. Apple: Cupertino could get smacked with $500 million bill in ebook case – July 25, 2013
U.S.A. v. Apple verdict could end the book as we know it – July 11, 2013
U.S. DOJ unwittingly causes further consolidation, strengthens Amazon’s domination of ebook industry – July 11, 2013
Where’s the proof that Apple conspired with publishers on ebook pricing? – July 10, 2013
U.S.A. v. Apple ruling could allow U.S. government to monitor, interfere with future Apple negotiations – July 10, 2013
Judge Denise Cote likely wrote most of her U.S.A. v. Apple ebooks case decision before the trial – July 10, 2013
U.S.A. v. Apple: NY judge rules Apple colluded to fix ebook prices, led illegal conspiracy, violated U.S. antitrust laws – July 10, 2013

86 Comments

    1. The Obama administration has been bought and paid for. Congratulations to Amazon and Google. Well played. It’s now clear that our government is for sale to the highest bidder. This is nothing new for Eric Holder (who is currently in contempt of Congress) and the US DOJ.

      One of the requirements of an anti-trust case is market dominance. Since Amazon owns 65% of the ebook market, how would Apple and its partner publishers force anyone to pay a higher price? And in reality, prices for ebooks actually went down. The $12.99 and $14.99 were the maximum prices Apple would allow in its store, not minimum prices, as was clearly indicated by Apple executive emails.

      The “news” outlets don’t bother telling you these facts. They’re being paid too. Piling on Apple sells advertising. Everybody involved is bought and paid for in one way or another. I voted for Obama twice. I now understand that I was conned. Obama is another Nixon, only smarter.

      1. “Obama is another Nixon, only smarter.”

        Nixon is not in Obama’s league. One break-in and cover up, big deal compared to all the scandals under Obama that he disses as “phony.” When you say smarter, possibly your referring to the media that allows smartypants to get away with everything. In the 1970s journalists went after corrupt public officials, never relented and were not intimidated. Not today. They are worst ones bought and paid for by campaign commercials and access to a seat on Air Force One.

        Your analysis of Apple’s business model and DOJ nonsense is spot on.

      2. Makes me regret my vote for Nixon, my first as a naturalised citizen. His fateful weakness was not in his paranoia, which was well-founded—people really were after him. It was letting that cloud his judgement, cramping his world view, reducing the statesman to a petty crook trying to cover his tracks. In Obama I now see a similar psychological mechanism operating, different in that his absence of statesmanship makes him defer, maddeningly, to advisors stroking his ego in the same way that Haldeman did with Nixon. Damn!

    1. Can’t you live without pointing and labeling?

      The issue warrants support form liberals and conservatives alike- common denominator fairness and justice.

        1. @ Scott

          I did, at first, think breeze had a great point, “The issue warrants support form liberals and conservatives alike- common denominator fairness and justice.” But your thinking is like a laser, cutting to the heart of the matter, showing me how mistaken breeze and I were. The mature “Awwww” also really adds to your post’s effectiveness.

          I’m sure everyone has been persuaded by your devastating logic.

      1. I hear you dude.

        Now is the time that citizens should be putting political leanings aside and coming together as one to fix this mess of government we have allowed to fester into something truly ugly.

        Our government is not serving the people and thus is not currently by the people or for the people.

        If we don’t get this under control ASAP it will only get worse.

    2. Yehhh. Let’s get back to the Golden Age of Bush — when everything was sunshine and lollipops, and the Republicans acted SO decisively towards the betterment of all citizens.

      What? What’s that you say? Bush’s policies let the financial sector play games that crashed the world’s economy. NO! You MUST be mistaken. Every thing was wonderful.

      1. Of the 98 U.S. senators for voted in favor of the US Patriot Act of 2001 (Senator Landrieu (D-LA) did not vote) Senator Russ Feingold of Wisconsin was the only senator who voted against the Patriot Act on October 24, of 2001.

          1. The day after the fire Hitler asked for and received from President Hindenburg the Reichstag Fire Decree, signed into law by Hindenburg using Article 48 of the Weimar Constitution. The Reichstag Fire Decree suspended most civil liberties in Germany and was used by the Nazis to ban publications not considered “friendly” to the Nazi cause.

    3. Bravo! Focused like a laser beam to spell out the TRUE problem. Liberals, the 1960s protest generation specifically, is at the right age and in FULL power like the country has never seen before. Anyone with a brain can clearly see the damage they are inflicting on this country day after day. The true tragedy is, they are blind to their own failings and when someone makes a reasonable alternative argument, what do they do? Blame Bush. Blame Reagan. NEVER blame a liberal for the economic mess we are in. Bottom line: We are ruled by the irresponsible who are incapable of responsibility.

        1. I think I know. The broad brush stroke comment of the 1960s generation needed a qualifier — not all the same then, and certainly even more different now because when you age some folks see things differently. I count two good ones here … 🙂

            1. Here’s a guy (GoeB) acknowledging he didn’t express himself as well as he’d like – in an apologetic way. He reaches out, gives you a smiley face… and you make a snippy comment about structure fundamentals. Yer such jerk, botvijerk.

            2. hypocrisy |hiˈpäkrisē|
              noun ( pl. hypocrisies )
              the practice of claiming to have moral standards or beliefs to which one’s own behavior does not conform; pretense.
              ORIGIN Middle English: from Old French ypocrisie, via ecclesiastical Latin, from Greek hupokrisis ‘acting of a theatrical part,’ from hupokrinesthai ‘play a part, pretend,’ from hupo ‘under’ + krinein ‘decide, judge.’

            3. botvinnik is a force of nature: insistent to the extreme, answerable only to the laws of physics, unpredictable, violent at times, and impervious to criticism. I am forced to add: humorously ironic, when contemplated whilst consuming a competently mixed cocktail. But I have also learnt to keep my fingers away from GoeB’s mousetraps.

            4. Force of nature — Natural phenomena like landslides, fires, volcanoes and cows shitting contain no petulance, malice, or nastiness — qualities that permeate many botvijerk posts.

  1. If Steve was alive to see this, I think this would’ve been the tipping point that transformed him into a conservative. No way would he want to see another liberal Democratic administration in charge of the federal government. It’s just bad for business.

    1. This goes far beyond “liberal” and “conservative.” This is a matter of pure corruption that transcends party lines. This is the failings of our GOVERNMENT as a whole, not the party that happens to be running it at present time.

      But whatever. Let’s stay at each other’s throats with this trumped-up liberal-conservative bullshit and ignore the real problems.

      1. That’s the plan. The 1% rule because the 99% are easily distracted from reasonable objectives. As long as we focus our energies on beating each other we’ll never make progress on the 85% of issues where we can share common goals. (good roads, safe water, consumer protection from corporate malfeasance, fast internet access at reasonable prices for everyone, a health care system that won’t bankrupt anybody needing treatment, etc ).

        I can’t understand the actions of the Justice Department. I think it’s Republican moles undermining the reputation of Obama by pretending to be part of his team. This is as bad as anything I saw from the FCC when Bush was in office.

      2. Bullcrap!

        This is ALL about “liberal” versus “conservative.” It’s called POLICY and liberal policies pitched by the pretend president are ruining this country.

        “… not the party that happens to be running it at present time.”

        You have got to be joking … unreal. I’m not ignoring the real problems, but it is clear you are doing just that. Problems cannot be addressed when your an apologist for the (your) party in power, clueless to bad policy and fiscal mismanagement of epic proportions. Masking policy failure by practicing sharing equal blame (misery) is socialist, dishonest and does nothing to address the issues.

        Have my doubts you even know the real problems. Your post does not mention even one.

        1. First off: don’t you dare assault me personally. I’m a registered Republican who voted third-party in the last presidential election. Don’t presume to know my motivations.

          Second, “bad policy” is not something exclusive to Democrats. I don’t know if you remember this, but the previous Chief Executive was a Republican, and he was just as guilty of bad policy and fiscal mismanagement as Obama. And none of the Republican candidates in either of the last two elections would have been any better. Nor would any of the Democrat alternatives to Obama. No matter WHO was in office, this country would still be going to shit right now. It’s just a matter of which half of the population would be pissed off more than the other.

          The “real problem” is that our entire political system has been corrupted to its core to protect the interests of the politicians involved and the businesses that support them, by convincing US that there is a meaningful distinction between Red and Blue.

          You want to know the real reason why nothing gets done in Washington? Why Congress can’t even agree on no-brainer issues? Because actually getting stuff done is counterproductive to the trappings and keepings of power. Because so long as they keep US distracted with their dog-and-pony shows, year after year, and so long as they keep us scared of our own shadows, they can keep stripping away our rights and robbing us blind. All the while telling us it’s for our own good.

          It’s not a Democrat thing, because Republicans do it too. It’s the whole damnable system. And only a fool would fail to recognize that. I’m not apologizing for anything. I hate it as much as you do. But I will NOT shove my finger in my elephantine ears and cry “La-la-la, I’m not listening” just because someone is pointing his finger at ALL the players instead of just the ones on the other team.

          1. Very nicely said, doc.
            Also, if I may say so, HOW you expressed that is a great example of how to express some actual THOUGHTS tied together by actual LOGIC.

            1. Thanks, Seamus.

              It sickens me that people still so readily swallow the “us-versus-them” narrative that’s been keeping people in serfdom since the dawn of governmental structure. The only “us-versus-them” that matters is the masses against the government that seeks to control them. It doesn’t matter whether it’s an empire or monarchy, a democratic republic, or a socialist state. All forms of government seek to mislead and control the masses, because that’s the only way the people IN power can STAY in power.

              Fascists believe the enemy is other nations, or elements of their own nation who threaten the purity of their national heritage. In socialist states, the enemy is the Bourgeoisie. In empires, those who live outside the empire–the as-of-yet unconquered peoples. In a democratic system, the most feared enemy is everyone in the population who believes differently from you.

              So long as we’re willing to line up into almost exclusively two camps, constantly at each other’s throats–often just to spite the other side, even when we rationally agree with one another–then the politicians will manipulate us into keeping them in power. No matter which individual party is “in charge” for any given period of time, and no matter which individual politicians rise or fall from grace, they all (collectively) win in the end.

              And don’t even get me started on the underlying bureaucracy, which suffers only a minor “shuffling of the deck chairs” whenever new leadership is brought on, but remains largely unchanged and largely designed to keep at bay the people they are ostensibly there to serve.

              “Long live the new king, same as the old king.”

          2. Let me try this again:

            Bullcrap!

            This is ALL about “liberal” versus “conservative.” It’s called POLICY and liberal policies pitched by the pretend president are ruining this country.

            In case you missed it, Bush has not been in office the last five years, Republicans have not controlled all of Washington for many more years. I repeat, “liberal” policies, big business envy, high tax hate are ruining this country. What part of this do you not understand?

            Spare me the faux fairness doctrine, “not the party that happens to be running it at present time.” I never heard a line quite like that. That should be a centerpiece in the Apologist Hall of Fame.

            Granted, both sides share in the blame. But you have to admit we don’t live in a dead even 50-50 world.

            1. And what part of “this country was being ruined by the last Republican president as well” don’t you understand? I don’t know if you noticed, but the recession started BEFORE Obama got into office. The “War on Terror” and the stripping of our Constitutional rights began BEFORE Obama got into office. The first government bailouts occurred BEFORE Obama got into office. A great deal of the problems we’re facing now happened under Bush’s watch, or were set up by bad policies enacted by Clinton, H.W. Bush, and Reagan. They are SYSTEMIC ISSUES, not just the result of the most recent bad policy-maker in a line of bad policy-makers.

              Or, if you want to focus on “just the last five years,” how about the fact that the Republicans in Congress have been more interested in undermining the Democrats to score political points than in actually getting things done that need to be done?

              See, that’s the problem with partisan politics: nobody wants to take the blame for their part in the shitfest we find ourselves in, because it’s just easier to blame the Other Guy for his part.

              Own up, take responsibility. And no, it’s not a dead-even 50-50 distribution, but it’s damn close. Because this country has been “suffering” from bad policies and bad policy-makers since John Adams and Thomas Jefferson.

              And shut your damn mouth with that “apologist” bullshit. I’m not apologizing for anything the guy in office is doing. What I am doing, however, is actually looking at history, and not sticking to ridiculous party lines. People like you, Goe, short-sighted people like you in both parties who refuse to recognize that our political system AS A WHOLE is the problem, are the reason people like THEM are able to stay in office.

              So own up and take responsibility. If anyone here is adopting an apologist attitude, it’s you with your defense of the corrupt and morally bankrupt Republican Party, no less corrupt and morally bankrupt than the Democratic Party.

            2. @docwallaby

              Registered Republicam, eh? I have several liberal friends registered as Republicans and a few conservative friends registered as Democrats — means nothing.

              The recession under Bush was only months long as a result of the sub-prime mortgage collapse and bailout of big banks on Wall St., also attributed to bad housing loans for the most part. (A Clinton program Bush attempted to reform in Congress and failed several times, thank you Chris Dodd).

              Did you notice the dot.com bust recession started under Clinton over a year before Bush took office in his first term? Did Dubya blame Clinton? Of course not, he IS an adult. That’s as far as I’ll go for now playing a looky back relative blame game.
              Some so called facts are somewhat suspect and open to interpretation. Your attempts to blame the other side equally, or more so, as I’ve said before is not even close to 50-50 no matter how hard you try. But for the moment, let’s pretend your absolutely correct.

              We live in the present, not the past and no one can deny the last five years have been the worst in the history of the U.S. The man in the White House campaigned on “Hope and Change” and has done next to nothing (golf, vacations, TV appearances excluded) even though he holds the most powerful position in the world and has everything at his beck and call in nano-seconds. Now that the majority of campaign promises went unfulfilled (Gitmo, jobs, keep your doctor, etc.) all the apologists have left is to go back in history and attempt to spread the blame equally and mask current administration failure. A transparent tactic that even my nonpolitical grandmother can see through …

              The U.S. more than ever is a laughingstock overseas. You don’t know it because the U.S. media won’t show it. Been reported Al Queda is regrouping after the planned successful attack on the U.S. Embassy in Libya while Hillary keeps blaming movies and eventually resigns. Many U.S. Embassies closed this weekend, hmmm, could that be a clue?

              If you really want to know what is going on in the U.S., read several British newspapers (online) of all political stripes that consistently do a much better job reporting the obvious reality with dead-on accuracy. That is, if you can pull yourself away from CNN, ABC News, N.Y. Times and your cartoons.

              Addressing your personal attacks and other childish prattle:

              “Well, you can wish in one hand and crap in the other and see which gets filled first.”

              – Grandpa Gustafson,
              Grumpier Old Men, 1995

              Oh, and have a nice day, Doc.

    2. That’s silly. Jobs had many issues about which he was definitely more conservative, such as doing away with teachers’ unions in school systems. He had his social views, and like most people, some views were more liberal and some more conservative. Very few are all one way or the other, but they’re often the ones who scream the most.

  2. Apple is right on with there rejection. Utter non-sence and way beyond the scope of any wrong doing. Especially since Apple is already appealing this case. There should be no penalties assumed or otherwise until Apple has gone through all of the appeals for this case.

    1. @JWSC
      You need to go back to school and learn what “socialist” actually means.
      You also need to look up how US corporations and the ultra-rich are doing these days.

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