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EU investigating Apple for anticompetitive e-book pricing - Page 2

post #41 of 46
Quote:
Originally Posted by charlituna View Post

Except for that favored nation clause. A term in being in iBooks was that you agree to never sell lower anywhere else. Many folks felt that that rule pushed companies to go iBooks only, or was at least trying to.

Whether that turns out to be illegal is up in the air. A condition that says 'you can't be in another ebook retailer if you want to be in iBooks' is clearly illegal, but a condition that essentially says 'you can't offer better terms to a competing ebook retailer' --well that's not as cut and dried.

Most favored nation clauses are standard in a lot of supplier-contractor contracts. I don't see why Apple would suddenly be prohibited from having them. And remember these are voluntary arrangements, either party can refuse to sign the dotted line if they didn't like the contract's provisions.

Like I keep saying, Apple has one of the best corporate antitrust lawyers in town. They know how to approach the line as close as possible without crossing it.
post #42 of 46
Quote:
Originally Posted by SolipsismX View Post

Selling the same wares at more money than your competitors is neither illegal nor anti-competitive. As I recall Amazon was unhappy with Apple's entry into the market because they were offering the publishers more money per sale than what Amazon was taking. I'm not sure how any of this could be considered anti-competitive on Apple's part.

The allegation isn't that Apple are simply selling eBooks for a higher price but that Apple colluded with all the major publishers to change the pricing model and push prices up.

I actually have no idea of the legality of doing something like that so it's hard to comment one way or another. Remember this is the EU, they have different rules over there.
post #43 of 46
Quote:
Originally Posted by saarek View Post

Still annoys me that many e-books are the same price as paperback books, it's pure profiteering.

At the end of the day e-books do not have to be printed & then shipped, sure you'll still have Apple/Amazon's mark up but then you'd have that at a bookstore. As it's digital delivery Apple/Amazon don't have to have retail stores full of staff that needs to be paid for.

E-books, just like all downloadable content should be cheaper full stop!

It is true the e-books don't have to be printed and shipped, but paper books don't need servers, bandwidth, and employees maintaining all this equipment. Also, these servers and such need maintenance and need to be upgraded every so often to stay competitive.

What I'm trying to say is that they do save in some areas with ebooks, but then they have to pay in other areas. I am positive that e-books are cheaper to distribute, but it doesn't mean that its virtually free to do it.
post #44 of 46
Quote:
Originally Posted by jragosta View Post

Nonsense. Everyone has (essentially) a monopoly on their own work. They decide how to sell it. If they choose to go through a single publisher, that's their choice. Or they could choose to go through multiple publishers - using a different publisher for each book. Or they could choose to publish their own work. There's nothing unfair about that.

That's true, but it's up to the authors (and the publishers who represent the authors) to choose how they want to sell the product. If an author insists on ONLY paper copies, they can do that (if their publisher will agree). OTOH, an author can insist on only e-Books. They can choose to sign up for Amazon's model. They can choose to sign up for Apple's agency model. It's not up to the government or anyone else to tell someone how to sell their work.

Sorry, but while that's a nice scenario, it's just not the way the real world works. Self-publishing for an unknown author is not viable if they want anyone to actually discover and read their book. There are few publishers, and a lot of competition for which books get published, so a new author has to pretty much take what the publishers offer. That almost always involves an exclusive license to the copyright for the publisher, and very often rights to future work. Few authors can dictate the formats their book is published in, or under what model they are sold.

Authors, in general, with very few exceptions, simply aren't in a position to decide how their work is sold, and the publishing industry has always been like that, although, government grant of copyright is probably the single biggest change that benefited authors. The government is simply not the problem in the publishing interesting, as much as those of certain ideological bents like to blame it for all the worlds ills.
post #45 of 46
Quote:
Originally Posted by Firefly7475 View Post

Connotes for people that read this and are still scratching their heads:
  • Amazon was allowing customers to subsidize the cost of their Kindle with cheap eBooks (e.g. if each eBook is $10 cheaper than the paperback equivalent after you buy 10 books the Kindle has "paid for itself")
  • The publishers didn't like this because the money used to subsidize the Kindle was coming out of their pockets.
  • Apple didn't like competing with "free" hardware.
  • Allegedly under Apple's guidance the publishers colluded to change the pricing model to increase prices and screw Amazon over.

So it's wrong for publishers to do this, why do the music & movie industries get away with it? I guess not everyone has to abide by the same standards.
post #46 of 46
Quote:
Originally Posted by Firefly7475 View Post

The allegation isn't that Apple are simply selling eBooks for a higher price but that Apple colluded with all the major publishers to change the pricing model and push prices up.

I actually have no idea of the legality of doing something like that so it's hard to comment one way or another. Remember this is the EU, they have different rules over there.

Now it's not just the EU. The US DOJ also confirmed an Apple investigation is underway.

http://macdailynews.com/2011/12/07/u...book-industry/
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