Apple set to be sued over ebook price fixing
Posted on 11 Apr 2012 at 08:41
Apple faces legal action from US officials over alleged ebook price fixing.
According to sources close to the matter, the Department of Justice is expected to settle cases with several publishers this week and sue Apple over its role in setting prices.
The Justice Department has been investigating alleged price-fixing by Apple and five major publishers. A lawsuit against Apple, one of the parties not in negotiations over a potential settlement, is on the cards, a source close to the case said.
The Justice Department is investigating whether deals Apple cut two years ago with the quintet of major publishers - when the consumer electronics maker launched its iPad - were done with the intent of propping up prices for digital books, the sources said.
As part of those agreements, publishers shifted to a model that allowed them to set the price of ebooks and give Apple a 30% cut of sales, the sources said.
Talks between the Justice Department and some publishers have been ongoing, with settlements expected as soon as this week, one of the two sources familiar with the matter said on condition of anonymity.
A negotiated settlement is expected to eliminate Apple's so-called "most favoured nation" status, which had prevented the publishers from selling lower-priced ebooks through rival retailers such as Amazon.com or Barnes & Noble.
Apple declined to comment, while the Justice Department and five publishers could not be reached for comment.
you forgot to mention that they are also being investigated by the EU for the same matter.
By big_D on 11 Apr 2012
you forgot to mention the EU are also performing the same investigation and are in negotiations with most of the publishers.
By big_D on 11 Apr 2012
About time this happened. Apple gets away with murder, yet Microsoft only has to blink and they're in the courts for anti-competitive behaviour. But don't let it stop there - how about clamping down on price-fixing for Macs, iPhones, iPads and their respective data contracts? And while I am at it, how about forcing them to open up their App Store to third party competition? Oh and not to mention, shouldn't someone stop them from bundling Safari with their OS?
By anthona on 11 Apr 2012
You have to remember that Microsoft has only been kicked so hard by the various competition bodies only after they gained such a massively dominant position in the desktop PC market.
Then were leveraging that dominance to dictate terms to other companies.
Up until recently, Apple weren't a big enough player in any one area to trigger interest from competition authorities.
I'm sure that now they are so big, they will attract the same scrutiny as Microsoft did.
However, given that safari is still a comparatively small share of the overall browser market, it may be some time before we see a browser ballot.
By Penfolduk01 on 11 Apr 2012
Are you sure?
"Up until recently, Apple weren't a big enough player in any one area to trigger interest from competition authorities."
Interesting that they've managed to become the richest company in the world WITHOUT being a "big enough player"! God help us now they are!!
Or perhaps it's the fact that their anti competitive behaviour HASN'T been reigned in that they've managed to make so much money, by charging whatever they like and ripping people off so easily!
The browser law doesn't depend on whether it has a large share of the market, it simply shouldn't be bundled with the OS, or a choice must be given - does Apple give consumers a choice over any part of its products? The hell it doesn't!
The only choice is buy or not to buy and if you buy, you do it their way!
By AJPCSolutions on 12 Apr 2012
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