Mobile Version
Free Internet Press
  Uncensored News For Real People

FIP Year In Review

FIP Month in Review

FIP Archive Search

Multiple Discoveries from NASA's New Horizons Pluto Mission

R.I.P. William 'Bill' Herbert Kelder - Intellpuke

Gamers Donate 37,500 Pounds Of Food To Needy

Statement From The Whitehouse Regarding The Government Shutdown

An Open Response To 'Organizing for Action'

Bayou Corne: The Biggest Ongoing Disaster In The U.S. You Have Not Heard Of

Boston Mayor Hopes Feds 'Throw the Book' at Marathon Bombing Suspect

Boston Police Closing In On Suspects

2 Explosions At Boston Marathon. 2 Dead, Many Injured.

The Press vs Citizens Rights and Privacy - Act 3

CBS News - Year In Review 2012 - 366 Days: 2012 In Review

The Guardian - 2012 In Review: An Interactive Guide To The Year That Was

TruTV - The Biggest Conspiracy Theories of 2012

Colbert Nation: 2012: A Look Back

FIP Year In Review(s?)

Happy Holidays

Welcome To A New Era!

An Open Letter To United Health Care, Medcom, And The Medical Insurance Industry In General

Whitehouse Petition To Remove "Under God" and "In God" From Currency And The Pledge.

December 21, 2012

If Hillary Clinton Ran For President, She Would Probably Be The Best-prepared Candidate In American History

CIA Director David Petraeus Resigns After FBI Investigation Uncovers Affair With High-Profile Journalist

FIP Format Update

Thank you for voting.

Live Election Results

FIP In Hiatus

U.S.-Afghan Military Operations Suspended After Attacks

Iran Nuclear Chief Says IAEA Might Be Infiltrated By 'Terrorists And Saboteurs'

Romney Stands By Gaffe

Apple Accused By U.S. Of Colluding With Publishers To Fix Price Of EBooks
2012-04-11 13:16:11 (229 weeks ago)
Posted By: Intellpuke

The U.S. government has accused Apple and five book publishers of colluding to fix the prices of ebooks.

A lawsuit in New York on Wednesday said Apple had conspired with publishers in response to Amazon's success in selling ebooks for just under $10.

It said the alleged price-fixing came as Apple prepared to launched the iPad and was guaranteed a 30% commission on each ebook sold.

The publishers listed in the lawsuit include Hachette SA, HarperCollins, Macmillan, Penguin and Simon & Schuster.

Hachette, HarperCollins and Simon & Schuster settled their suits on Wednesday. Bloomberg News reported that Apple and Macmillan had refused to engage in settlement talks with the U.S. Department of Justice, and will argue that pricing agreements between Apple and publishers improved competition in a field that had been hitherto dominated by Amazon.

Apple has not yet made a statement in reaction to the legal action.

(story continues below)

Announcing the lawsuit at a press conference in Washington, D.C., on Wednesday, U.S. Attorney-General Eric Holder described shadowy back-room meetings, where Apple would each quarter get together with publishers to discuss "confidential competitive matters" and set the prices of their ebooks.

Holder said: "Beginning in the summer of 2009, we allege that executives at the highest levels of the companies included in today's lawsuit – concerned that ebook sellers had reduced prices – worked together to eliminate competition among stores selling ebooks, ultimately increasing prices for consumers. As a result of this alleged conspiracy, we believe that consumers paid millions of dollars more for some of the most popular titles."

"Our investigation even revealed that one CEO allegedly went so far as to encourage an ebook retailer to punish another publisher for not engaging in these illegal practices."

Holder also defined the terms of the settlement, which would require the publishers "to grant retailers – such as Amazon and Barnes & Noble – the freedom to reduce the prices of their ebook titles."

The complaint, which was filed by the Antitrust Division of the U.S. Department of Justice, read: "Apple facilitated the publisher defendants' collective effort to end retail price competition by coordinating their transition to an agency model across all retailers."

With Apple's iBookstore, ebook authors and sellers must hand over a 30% cut of each sale. Under this system, known as the "agency model", publishers, rather than vendors, set the prices, giving Apple and the publishers an incentive to charge more.

The lawsuit reads: "As a result of discussions with the publisher defendants, Apple learned that the publisher defendants shared a common objective with Apple to limit ebook retail price competition, and that the publisher defendants also desired to have popular ebook retail prices stabilize at levels significantly higher than $9.99.

"Together, Apple and the publisher defendants reached an agreement whereby retail price competition would cease (which all the conspirators desired), retail ebook prices would increase significantly (which the publisher defendants desired), and Apple would be guaranteed a 30% 'commission' on each ebook it sold (which Apple desired)."

Amazon's pricing model, by contrast, gives ebook authors and sellers greater flexibility to price what they like for their work.

Intellpuke: You can read this article by Guardian U.S. News Editor Brian Braiker in context here:

Email To A Friend
Email this story to a friend:
Your Name:
Their Email:
Readers Comments
Add your own comment.
(Anonymous commenting now enabled.)

Creative Commons License
Free Internet Press is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 United States License. You may reuse or distribute original works on this site, with attribution per the above license.

Any mirrored or quoted materials may be copyright their respective authors, publications, or outlets, as shown on their publication, indicated by the link in the news story. Such works are used under the fair use doctrine of United States copyright law. Should any materials be found overused or objectionable to the copyright holder, notification should be sent to, and the work will be removed and replaced with such notification.

Please email with any questions.

Our Privacy Policy can be viewed at

XML/RSS/RDF Newsfeed Syndication XML/RSS/RDF Newsfeed Syndication:

XML/RSS/RDF Newsfeed Syndication XML News Sitemap