Apple wins preliminary approval for $450M e-books settlement

Posted:
in General Discussion edited August 2014
In an apparent change of heart, U.S. District Court Judge Denise Cote on Friday granted preliminary approval for Apple's $450 million settlement going to a class of consumers over e-book price fixing in the iBookstore.

iBooks


According to an in-court report by Reuters, Judge Cote agreed to the terms and provisions of Apple's $450 million settlement, which is to be divvied up -- $400 million for consumers and $50 million for lawyers.

The decision comes one week after the same judge voiced concerns over the settlement's terms, saying certain provisions would greatly reduce damages paid out to affected consumers.

Apple is currently appealing Judge Cote's 2013 ruling that found the company guilty of colluding with five major book publishers to fix the price of e-books sold through the iBookstore. The ruling, presented as an antitrust case argued by the U.S. Department of Justice, brought down an injunction barring Apple from reaching similar sales arrangements with other content sellers.

With the settlement, Judge Cote expressed unease over a provision that would have Apple pay out only $70 million if the Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit overturns her original ruling and sends the case back down for reevaluation. Further, Apple will pay nothing if the appeal is ultimately successful.

The provisions were left whole in the preliminary approval, however, as the jurist said a class of states representing consumers and individual plaintiffs "strongly believe" such a scenario is unlikely.

"The proposed settlement agreement is within the range of those that may be approved as fair and reasonable, such that notice to the class is appropriate," Judge Cote said. "Preliminary approval is granted."

A hearing for final approval has been set for Nov. 21.
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Comments

  • Reply 1 of 29
    bobschlobbobschlob Posts: 1,074member
    I guess this is good news.
    Now put this frikn thing into past history. (sigh)
  • Reply 2 of 29
    tallest skiltallest skil Posts: 43,399member
    Originally Posted by BobSchlob View Post

    Now put this frikn thing into past history. (sigh)



    Not until Amazon answers for their crimes.

  • Reply 3 of 29
    I wonder if the DOJ whispered in Cote's ear to back off a bit. Amazon's overall actions before, during and especially after this farce of a trial is not going well for the DOJ.
  • Reply 4 of 29

    Im surprised the lawyers cut isn't the $400 and consumers getting the $50 million portion. Must have been bad at their job if they didnt get the greater portion of the class action suit. 

  • Reply 5 of 29
    SpamSandwichSpamSandwich Posts: 30,840member

    There will be more extortion opportunities for the government in the future.

  • Reply 6 of 29
    rob53rob53 Posts: 2,007member
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by leavingthebigG View Post



    I wonder if the DOJ whispered in Cote's ear to back off a bit. Amazon's overall actions before, during and especially after this farce of a trial is not going well for the DOJ.

    I don't think the DOJ has ever been that smart. They just continue to take protection money from Amazon and others and we have no way to stop them. It doesn't matter who the President is because the DOJ has always done their own thing. Until Apple shells out the required few million dollars, Amazon will be allowed to do whatever it wants to do. I have yet to hear any gripes from state AGs about Amazon, only about Apple. Amazon must be greasing those wheels as well.

  • Reply 7 of 29

    I love that Judge Cote's big issue is that there was a clause that says if it turns out you screwed up and we are not guilty after all, we don't have to pay this extortion money.  I wonder if it was one of her Judge friends/superiors that told her to back off instead of the DOJ.

  • Reply 8 of 29
    quinneyquinney Posts: 2,524member
    ajmonline wrote: »
    I love that Judge Cote's big issue is that there was a clause that says if it turns out you screwed up and we are not guilty after all, we don't have to pay this extortion money.  I wonder if it was one of her Judge friends/superiors that told her to back off instead of the DOJ.

    I wouldn't be surprised. I can imagine there are a number of judges who consider her an embarrassment to the profession.
  • Reply 9 of 29
    gtrgtr Posts: 3,231member
  • Reply 10 of 29
    SpamSandwichSpamSandwich Posts: 30,840member
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by GTR View Post



    Here's a little interesting reading:



    http://fortune.com/2013/08/14/the-curious-case-of-apple-ebook-judge-denise-cote/

     

    Anyone with virtually unlimited and unchecked power can end up going cuckoo. She should be removed from the bench and that idiot judge in Chicago, Richard Posner should also be retired.

  • Reply 11 of 29
    gtrgtr Posts: 3,231member
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by SpamSandwich View Post

     

    Anyone with virtually unlimited and unchecked power can end up going cuckoo. She should be removed from the bench and that idiot judge in Chicago, Richard Posner should also be retired.


     

    I agree with you.

     

    But who are we to judge?

     

    ;)

  • Reply 12 of 29
    dasanman69dasanman69 Posts: 12,976member
    gtr wrote: »
    I agree with you.

    But who are we to judge?

    ;)

    Somebody's gotta judge the judges.
  • Reply 13 of 29
    "Change of heart?" Too bad it wasn't a change of brain, instead. I fear a brain transplant would fail, however, due to rejection of foreign tissue.
  • Reply 14 of 29
    bigmikebigmike Posts: 250member
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by joshuarayer View Post

     

    Im surprised the lawyers cut isn't the $400 and consumers getting the $50 million portion. Must have been bad at their job if they didnt get the greater portion of the class action suit. 


     

    It's a class-action suit. If it was Apple vs. a single party, then it'd be a different story. If the lawyers were bad at their job, they would have lost. Besides, if the lawyers actually got that much greater a percentage of the money, it would've been obviously overly ludicrous. That would be kind of like getting your paycheck and having 85% in taxes taken out and saying Uncle Scam did a great job.

  • Reply 15 of 29
    SpamSandwichSpamSandwich Posts: 30,840member
    dasanman69 wrote: »
    Somebody's gotta judge the judges.

    And watch the watchmen.
  • Reply 16 of 29
    dasanman69dasanman69 Posts: 12,976member
    And watch the watchmen.

    Exactly, whatever happened to the whole 'checks and balances' thingy. :lol:
  • Reply 17 of 29
    iaeeniaeen Posts: 588member
    Im surprised the lawyers cut isn't the $400 and consumers getting the $50 million portion. Must have been bad at their job if they didnt get the greater portion of the class action suit. 

    I'd rather have a share of $50MM split 100 ways than a share of $400MM split 800,000,000 ways.
  • Reply 18 of 29
    elrothelroth Posts: 1,201member
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by joshuarayer View Post

     

    Im surprised the lawyers cut isn't the $400 and consumers getting the $50 million portion. Must have been bad at their job if they didnt get the greater portion of the class action suit. 


    No - the lawyers are working for the states who joined together to sue. States' lawyers don't fleece people like private class-action lawyers - they basically charge what it costs to litigate the cases (which still can be expensive).

  • Reply 19 of 29
    elrothelroth Posts: 1,201member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by bigmike View Post

     

     

    It's a class-action suit. If it was Apple vs. a single party, then it'd be a different story. If the lawyers were bad at their job, they would have lost. Besides, if the lawyers actually got that much greater a percentage of the money, it would've been obviously overly ludicrous. That would be kind of like getting your paycheck and having 85% in taxes taken out and saying Uncle Scam did a great job.


    No private lawyer would charge that little (11% of the settlement). They would probably take at least 40% of it ($180 million). But these aren't private lawyers - they work for the states' Attorneys General.

  • Reply 20 of 29
    I don't care if apple pays a fine or not. But please don't increase the price of Kindle books. Apple users will anyway pay Apple whatever premium they ask for. Why make others pay more unnecessarily?
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