by Mike Masnick
Tue, Dec 29th 2009 8:58am
I've never understood book price fixing laws in Europe, that require books to be sold at the same price. Economically challenged individuals claim that this helps independent booksellers who aren't forced to undercut prices of other book chains. Except, of course, forcing higher prices on everyone actually leads to fewer books purchased, less innovation and less opportunity for those independent bookstores to offer something better. These laws have caused trouble for Amazon in the past. Over in France, Amazon's famous free shipping promotions were deemed illegal for being an effective "price discount" on books. And now a bookseller is suing Amazon in Germany for supposedly violating fixed prices on books as well (found via Michael Scott). In this case, the bookseller is sick of people showing up with printouts from Amazon, and wants to force Amazon to offer higher prices, because apparently consumers must suffer.
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