US Government Finally Realizes That Publishers & Apple Conspiring To Raise eBook Prices Is Price Fixing

from the well,-duh... dept

Almost exactly two years ago, when the big publishers, along with Apple, effectively forced Amazon to allow the publishers to jack up prices on ebooks, I noted that this looked like a classic case of price fixing. Apparently, the US government agrees -- and found enough evidence to go after the publishers and Apple for price fixing. There are settlement talks ongoing, but if they fall through, the government is likely to sue. This probably means that we'll start seeing some lower prices on ebooks. Of course, the stupid thing is that these super high ebook prices have probably hurt the market more than helped. Lots of indie authors have experimented with ebook pricing, and found that the sweet spot for maximizing revenue is often under $5. So while big publishers may have been getting more per sale, it seems likely they were leaving a ton of money on the table by limiting the size of their ebook market with prices that were just too high.

Filed Under: agency model, antitrust, ebooks, price fixing, pricing, wholesale
Companies: amazon, apple

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  1. identicon
    Glen, 9 Mar 2012 @ 2:12pm

    I'd like there to be some kind of a smackdown on Apple and the publishers, I doubt there will be little more than a slap on the hand.

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