Apple, Publishers Pushing Back Against DOJ Ebook Charges

By Michelle Maisto  |  Posted 2012-04-14 Print this article Print

Apple, Penguin and Macmillan are not backing down from a DOJ suit that accuses them of colluding to keep ebook prices high. Apple's agency model keeps the market competitive, say the publishers.

Apple is calling the U.S. Department of Justice€™s accusation that it colluded with a number of publishers to keep ebook prices high and in check €œsimply not true.€ The company€™s statement comes days after federal prosecutors leveled charges against Apple and five book publishers concerning ebook pricing and whether these companies conspired to keep prices high at a cost to consumers.

Apple spokesperson Tom Neumayr said in a statement that the 2010 launch of Apple iBookstore €œfostered innovation and competition, breaking Amazon€™s monopolistic grip on the publishing industry.€

Since then, Neumayr added, €œcustomers have benefitted from ebooks that are more interactive and engaging. Just as we€™ve allowed developers to set prices on the App Store, publishers set prices on the iBookstore.€

The DOJ€™s Antitrust Division filed a lawsuit against Apple and five of the nation€™s largest book publishers, Hachette Book Group, Simon & Schuster, HarperCollins, Macmillan and Penguin. Attorney General Eric Holder, in an April 11 press statement, called it €œprogress in protecting American consumers from anti-competitive harm, ensuring fairness in the marketplace and making certain that cutting-edge technologies are available at the lowest possible price.€

Michelle Maisto has been covering the enterprise mobility space for a decade, beginning with Knowledge Management, Field Force Automation and eCRM, and most recently as the editor-in-chief of Mobile Enterprise magazine. She earned an MFA in nonfiction writing from Columbia University, and in her spare time obsesses about food. Her first book, The Gastronomy of Marriage, if forthcoming from Random House in September 2009.

Submit a Comment

Loading Comments...
Manage your Newsletters: Login   Register My Newsletters

Rocket Fuel