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(C|Net)   Justice department calls Apple's proposed ebook price-fixing settlement unfair. Wait a minute. Strike that. Reverse it   (news.cnet.com) divider line 28
    More: Obvious, price-fixings, SIMON & SCHUSTER, Hachette Book Group  
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1716 clicks; posted to Business » on 16 Aug 2012 at 2:01 PM (1 year ago)   |  Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



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2012-08-16 02:12:28 PM
*sniffle* The Justice Department won't let me continue to price fix until we've worn them down after years in court! NOT FAIR! MOMMMMMYY......
 
2012-08-16 02:28:54 PM
Since the publishing industry is hell-bent on trying to keep things in the status quo in terms of RETAIL pricing, then they should be consistent and keep the WHOLESALE model the same as well.
 
2012-08-16 02:45:00 PM
I saw that some of the terms included the contracts with Apple get broken, but I'm sure there is a monetary fine as well. What I'm curious about is if any of those monetary funds are going to be returned to customers that were gouged. I can probably safely assume that readers will not see one thin dime from any settlement, but one can dream, right?

I'm of mixed feelings on this situation. On one hand price fixing is wrong, without exception. On the other hand, the market should be dictating the prices by not purchasing books at prices they don't see fit to pay. It's not like they're price fixing milk or vegetables, things that are necessary for maintaining an upright status.
 
2012-08-16 02:47:03 PM
Unfair price fixing settlement calls Apple's justice department?
 
2012-08-16 02:49:05 PM
Now that Amazon is charging more for some Kindle titles than the physical books and I have a Kindle, I'm getting a kick, etc.
 
2012-08-16 02:53:51 PM
"Apple, which denied the Justice Department's allegations, said the publishers' settlement unfairly impacts Apple and would be "irreversible."

Yeah that's the point, its forces you to compete with others instead of forcing a price point with suppliers that screws everyone else.
 
2012-08-16 04:03:46 PM
Apple seems to be operating under the impression that Amazon is on trial. They're not. And appealing to consequences isn't going to carry any weight in court.
 
2012-08-16 04:23:30 PM
The DOJ is obviously made up of Android and Windows fanboys who live in their mothers' basements.
 
2012-08-16 04:51:34 PM

HotIgneous Intruder: Now that Amazon is charging more for some Kindle titles than the physical books and I have a Kindle, I'm getting a kick, etc.


Amazon doesn't set the price of ebooks. That's up to the publisher. They actually encourage low prices...They pay a 35% royalty on books priced over $10.00 and 70% on books prices $9.99 and under.
 
2012-08-16 05:25:59 PM
Attempting to enforce actions that are the entire point of the case in question BEFORE the court has ruled on the merits does seem to be getting a bit too far ahead of the game.

Still, not much sympathy out there for Apple in the realm of attempting to impose wildly one-sided and unfair terms onto another party (iTunes end user license agreement).
 
2012-08-16 05:27:39 PM
i.chzbgr.com
 
2012-08-16 06:34:45 PM

HotIgneous Intruder: Now that Amazon is charging more for some Kindle titles than the physical books and I have a Kindle, I'm getting a kick, etc.


We can thank Apple for that, the thieving bastards.
 
2012-08-16 06:34:49 PM

HotIgneous Intruder: Now that Amazon is charging more for some Kindle titles than the physical books and I have a Kindle, I'm getting a kick, etc.


www.freeimagehosting.net

Notice the "Price set by publisher" tag. Apple's actions directly caused that to happen.
 
2012-08-16 08:41:47 PM
I take a lot of mass transit. I see people with just about every device imaginable. I have never seen anyone read a book on an iPad, but there's a bunch of Kindles and more than one Nook.

Not sure who is getting books on the iPad.
 
2012-08-16 08:51:38 PM

enry: I take a lot of mass transit. I see people with just about every device imaginable. I have never seen anyone read a book on an iPad, but there's a bunch of Kindles and more than one Nook.

Not sure who is getting books on the iPad.



My wife.

She started reading ebooks years ago on her Palm IIIc, upgraded to a Palm LifeDrive read for a short period of time on her phone, and she got an iPad on the first day they were out because she could import her existing ebooks onto it.

She's always buying ebooks, always from Amazon though. Never from the iTunes Store.
 
2012-08-17 12:40:02 AM
Still don't understanding the whole *buying* electronic thing.

Anything I'd want to read is available used through Amazon, Powells or Strand for less than the ebook price, and I get a nice, physical book that isn't subject to battery drain, crash, etc. And usually there is a download available from one of the usual underground places that I don't feel bad about downloading for free as I've already bought a paper

And as far as Amazon---screw Amazon on this issue. As much as everyone dislikes Apple, it isn;t like they had a lot of choice in the matter, them or Barnes and Noble, as long as Amazon was selling below cost. Having wiped out most brick and mortar bookstores by selling new releases below wholesale cost, Amazon had established itself as a monopoly in the ebook market and was using its sell-below-cost pricing structure as barrier to entering the market.

This is the first time I'm aware of that DOJ filed suit to protect the monopolist.
 
2012-08-17 12:54:53 AM

wozzeck: This is the first time I'm aware of that DOJ filed suit to protect the monopolist.


You really havent been paying attention have you? Its not about any monopoly, this is a price fixing case which is bad, that is why they went after apple and why amazon will win, you cant collude to fix prices when others sell the same product then force them to raise prices.

Its protecting the free market, just because amazon has the larger market share does not make them a monopoly, this was done by apple to try and kill the kindle to increase their market share of the device market but then I know you dont understand that since you dont understand what a monopoly is either.
 
2012-08-17 01:47:49 AM
Every party is a dick in this case, legally or not. Amazon wanted to sell ebooks below cost to increase market share, and Apple wanted to be able to sell books at the same price as everyone else without losing money on each book sold.

The biggest dicks are the publishers who want the same (or more) money for ebooks than they get from physical distribution.

FFS, just give us the same books for $2 less because you don't have to print and ship them.

/See also the recording industry
//And how well that's worked out for them
 
2012-08-17 02:35:06 AM
Finally Apple will have some competition in the ebook market.
 
2012-08-17 08:13:06 AM

steamingpile: wozzeck: This is the first time I'm aware of that DOJ filed suit to protect the monopolist.

You really havent been paying attention have you? Its not about any monopoly, this is a price fixing case which is bad, that is why they went after apple and why amazon will win, you cant collude to fix prices when others sell the same product then force them to raise prices.

Its protecting the free market, just because amazon has the larger market share does not make them a monopoly, this was done by apple to try and kill the kindle to increase their market share of the device market but then I know you dont understand that since you dont understand what a monopoly is either.


Actually this is all about a monopoly--amazon. At the time Apple entered the ebook market, Amazon owned the market--90% of sales. Barnes and Noble hand entered with the Nook, but couldn't hope to compete with Amazon selling ebooks at below cost. Barnes and Noble didn't have the money reserves to loose $3 a book it sold.

When Apple entered with the agency model and signed the first publisher to an agency contract, Amazon reacted as any monopolist would---it blanked out the buy button for all of that publisher's books.

See: http://www.authorsguild.org/advocacy/articles/how-apple-saved-barnes-- noble.html

http://www.reuters.com/article/2012/06/08/us-barnesandnoble-justice-i d USBRE85613E20120608

Apple's agency model actually mostly helped Barnes and Noble, rather than Apple. Apple was helped by being able to offer ebooks on the Ipad without loosing money on sales by most publishers, but was never more than third in the race. Mostly what it did was get Barnes and Noble up temporarily to 20%+ share of the market, and Amazon down from 90% to 60%.

Whatever happens with the DOJ action, Apple will be fine--there won't be any major effect on Apple. Barnes and Noble, on the other hand, will probably be looking at going out of business if Apple loses, and that's what Amazon wants.

The agency model was a natural reaction to a 90% market share Amazon effectively preventing competition by predatory pricing. The Apple gets as low a price as any other seller part of the contract is certainly debatable--but again that was pointed directly at Amazon and intended to prevent Amazon from going to the publishers and saying, "Give us a lower price than anyone else or we'll toss you off Amazon completely."

Selling stuff at a loss temporarily to gain market share is fine--but that wasn't what Amazon was doing. They already represented 90% of the ebook market and were selling at a loss to prevent others from being able to profitably enter the market to begin with. That's the action of a monopolist, and for the DOJ to come in basically acting as private enforcers for Amazon is truly bizarre.

That isn't to say there weren't problems with what Apple was doing, however it is absurd to ignore that what Apple was doing was in response to anti-competitive actions by Amazon, and any addressing of the market by the DOJ should have taken that into account, instead of what we have now---which is the DOJ essentially acting as private enforcement unit for Amazon.
 
2012-08-17 08:58:39 AM

wozzeck: Still don't understanding the whole *buying* electronic thing.


I'm sure luddites like yourself back in the day also didn't understand the whole using electric candles and non horse driven carriages too.

There are always some idiots who have to be drug kicking and screaming into the light.
 
2012-08-17 09:18:36 AM

lilplatinum: wozzeck: Still don't understanding the whole *buying* electronic thing.

I'm sure luddites like yourself back in the day also didn't understand the whole using electric candles and non horse driven carriages too.

There are always some idiots who have to be drug kicking and screaming into the light.


Ebooks are great and all, but you are required to keep digital equipment to read them and hsould the providers go under you lose your entire collection. Physical copies are more long-term reliable.

That said, I enjoy the usability of ebooks a lot more than my physical libraries, and for texts i'm not particularly interested in keeping long term ebooks fit the bill perfectly. For works I really like and know I will read multiple times, a hard copy is a must.
 
2012-08-17 09:59:21 AM
"Nullifying a non-settling defendant's negotiated contract rights by another's settlement is fundamentally unfair, unlawful, and unprecedented," Apple argued.

Then don't settle. Take that big swinging dick of yours and go to trial.
 
2012-08-17 10:10:24 AM

rufus-t-firefly: "Nullifying a non-settling defendant's negotiated contract rights by another's settlement is fundamentally unfair, unlawful, and unprecedented," Apple argued.

Then don't settle. Take that big swinging dick of yours and go to trial.


Which is exactly what Apple is doing. In fact, TFA is squib of the filing Apple made with the court demanding exactly that. See, a contract is an agreement entered into between two or more parties. Three of the publishers are attempting to enter into a deal with DOJ nullifying their contracts with Apple. Apple does not want the contracts nullified, and wants the matter to go to trial.

Reading be fundamental.
 
2012-08-17 10:18:32 AM

lilplatinum: wozzeck: Still don't understanding the whole *buying* electronic thing.

I'm sure luddites like yourself back in the day also didn't understand the whole using electric candles and non horse driven carriages too.

There are always some idiots who have to be drug kicking and screaming into the light.


One of the things punctuation marks can be used for is to show emphasis. Emphasizing or highlighting certain words can change or modify the meaning of the sentence as a whole.

In the quoted section above, I have used * marks around the word buying. This is to show emphasis on that word. In verbal communication the ready analog would be to say the word "buying" in a different tone of voice than the remainder of the sentence.

I the quoted sentence I was stating that I do not understand handing over money to another party for privilege of gaining a conditioned, revocable license to an intangible good, here an ebook. The remainder of most post makes this additionally clear as I go on to state that the tangible, used version of a book is typically available at a lower cost than the ebook version, which are easily supplemented by downloading pirate version of the ebook, which I have no particular guilt about doing when I have already purchased a physical copy of the book.

Somehow your brain has managed to process all that and transform it into a fear of technology. This leads me to conclude that you either are an idiot or you are someone unaccustomed to reading text of more than a sentence or two.
 
2012-08-17 12:34:50 PM

wozzeck: Still don't understanding the whole *buying* electronic thing.

Anything I'd want to read is available used through Amazon, Powells or Strand for less than the ebook price, and I get a nice, physical book that isn't subject to battery drain, crash, etc. And usually there is a download available from one of the usual underground places that I don't feel bad about downloading for free as I've already bought a paper


For the same reason people are listening to shiatty 128 kbps quality mp3s through earbuds rather than listening to vinyl records on a high quality stereo ..... portability.

If you travel a lot, especially internationally, eBooks have been a farking lifechanger.
 
2012-08-17 12:44:27 PM

wozzeck: One of the things punctuation marks can be used for is to show emphasis. Emphasizing or highlighting certain words can change or modify the meaning of the sentence as a whole.

In the quoted section above, I have used * marks around the word buying. This is to show emphasis on that word. In verbal communication the ready analog would be to say the word "buying" in a different tone of voice than the remainder of the sentence.

I the quoted sentence I was stating that I do not understand handing over money to another party for privilege of gaining a conditioned, revocable license to an intangible good, here an ebook. The remainder of most post makes this additionally clear as I go on to state that the tangible, used version of a book is typically available at a lower cost than the ebook version, which are easily supplemented by downloading pirate version of the ebook, which I have no particular guilt about doing when I have already purchased a physical copy of the book.

Somehow your brain has managed to process all that and transform it into a fear of technology. This leads me to conclude that you either are an idiot or you are someone unaccustomed to reading text of more than a sentence or two.


Actually you biatch about things like battery drain, specifically - so your attempt to isolate your fear of technology and reduce it to just a paranoid fear of big brother revoking your licensing is invalid - as it is demonstrably more than that.

You emphasize on the revocability of it, which is a non issue for anyone with any modicrum of tech knowledge who could easily back up/convert/crack books if that unlikely scenario came into play - and as you admit to pirating you obviously have that small modicrum of knowledge and lack of respect for legalities that is required to do so. Odd thing for a luddite to have, but hey, it takes all types.

Weird to justify it that way though, if you think buying a ratty used paperback for $2 somehow entitles you to a free digital copy (a copy that is superior in portability and convenience) then you obviously have a fairly distorted view. Why bother giving the $2 to half priced books when you can just call a spade a spade and take what you want?
 
2012-08-17 02:28:21 PM

wozzeck: steamingpile: wozzeck: This is the first time I'm aware of that DOJ filed suit to protect the monopolist.

You really havent been paying attention have you? Its not about any monopoly, this is a price fixing case which is bad, that is why they went after apple and why amazon will win, you cant collude to fix prices when others sell the same product then force them to raise prices.

Its protecting the free market, just because amazon has the larger market share does not make them a monopoly, this was done by apple to try and kill the kindle to increase their market share of the device market but then I know you dont understand that since you dont understand what a monopoly is either.

Actually this is all about a monopoly--amazon. At the time Apple entered the ebook market, Amazon owned the market--90% of sales. Barnes and Noble hand entered with the Nook, but couldn't hope to compete with Amazon selling ebooks at below cost. Barnes and Noble didn't have the money reserves to loose $3 a book it sold.

When Apple entered with the agency model and signed the first publisher to an agency contract, Amazon reacted as any monopolist would---it blanked out the buy button for all of that publisher's books.

See: http://www.authorsguild.org/advocacy/articles/how-apple-saved-barnes-- noble.html

http://www.reuters.com/article/2012/06/08/us-barnesandnoble-justice-i d USBRE85613E20120608

Apple's agency model actually mostly helped Barnes and Noble, rather than Apple. Apple was helped by being able to offer ebooks on the Ipad without loosing money on sales by most publishers, but was never more than third in the race. Mostly what it did was get Barnes and Noble up temporarily to 20%+ share of the market, and Amazon down from 90% to 60%.

Whatever happens with the DOJ action, Apple will be fine--there won't be any major effect on Apple. Barnes and Noble, on the other hand, will probably be looking at going out of business if Apple loses, and that's what Amazon wants.

The agency ...


1) Ebook batteries last around a month with moderate to heavy use.

2) Every book purchased can have it's DRM removed and backed up very easily.

3) Apple didn't get into eBooks to save B&N, they got into it to make money. They created a situation where they could make even more money if they forced prices to go up for everyone by fixing it with the publishers.
 
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