U.S.A. vs. Apple ebook trial set for June 2013

The United States Justice Department will have their day in court against Apple -- but they'll have to wait for June 3, 2013 to do it. If you're joining this story in-progress, the U.S. government has accused Apple of anti-competitive practices and collision with book publishers to "boost the prices of ebooks". Apple claims they're fighting to keep the market free from Amazon dominance.

Amazon Inc, which makes the Kindle e-reader, had long sold e-books for as little as $9.99. The government complaint quoted Apple's late co-founder Steve Jobs as wanting to offer publishers a means to boost prices, and "create a real mainstream e-books market at $12.99 and $14.99."Apple argues it has not conspired with anyone or fixed prices for e-books in an effort to thwart Amazon's dominance of that fast-growing market. Apple says that its foray into e-books has actually fueled demand for e-books by forcing Amazon and rivals, including Barnes & Noble Inc, to compete more aggressively, including by upgrading e-reader technology.

I'm wondering why the U.S. government isn't suing over HD movie prices as well. Because, damn.

Source: Reuters

Rene Ritchie

Rene Ritchie is one of the most respected Apple analysts in the business, reaching a combined audience of over 40 million readers a month. His YouTube channel, Vector, has over 90 thousand subscribers and 14 million views and his podcasts, including Debug, have been downloaded over 20 million times. He also regularly co-hosts MacBreak Weekly for the TWiT network and co-hosted CES Live! and Talk Mobile. Based in Montreal, Rene is a former director of product marketing, web developer, and graphic designer. He's authored several books and appeared on numerous television and radio segments to discuss Apple and the technology industry. When not working, he likes to cook, grapple, and spend time with his friends and family.

  • What does the DOJ think that Apple ran into?
  • ...because, in ebooks, the US has evidence of ostensibly competing publishers acting in concert - one of they very definitions of anti-competitive behavior outlined in over a century of case law. Apple is only involved because there is official correspondence from Apple (and unofficial correspondence from Jobs) that they facilitated this sort of concerted actions from rivals.
    Had Hollywood left evidence this brazen, the US would go after them too. But I am sure you knew all this.
  • The real anti-competitive behavior is codified in copyright law. The law is designed to maximize profit and minimize the investment of new and useful arts. Publishers would rather sell an 80 year old classic versus support a new author. This is exactly the opposite of what copyright was designed to do. Put copyrights back in the hands of the actual artists, and devise balanced limits that clearly support the advancement of the arts.
  • I believe it should be "collusion" rather than "collision".
  • This is stupid. I think our government has mor important thing to do this suing apple for stupid stuff like this. I am hopping that once obama is gone stupid things like this will stop.
  • This is stupid. I think our government has more important thing to do this suing apple for stupid stuff like this. I am hopping that once obama is gone stupid things like this will stop.
  • Have they ever stopped? :D
    Anyway, I just hope that indie/independent writers will be able to set the price on their books - high or low, that's up to them.
  • I agree. The government should have nothing to do with how the writer prices their book. If we don't like the price, then we dot have to buy it.
  • The writers do price their books when they sell them...to the store (Amazon, B&N, Wal-Mart).
    Once the reseller has purchased the book from the publisher, it has the right to price the books when they sell them to an end customer.
    The publishers' collusion strips that right away from the reseller.
  • What a stupid comment. When the gov actually does is job of looking after is citizens people bitch. You do realize that the entire United States government can focus on more than one thing at once?
  • That was unintentional. Lol.
  • ..... There's always someone or entitypokjng there nose where it doesn't belong.... Sigh the human race
  • So apple can sue everyone for stupid things that they claim they invented ( my 10 year old palm Treo could do). But when someone sues apple it wrong...... fail
  • You guys are all missing the point. What the government is saying is that once you priced your book on I books at whatever price, no one was allowed to sell it cheaper as long as it is on I books. So if you price your book at $12.99 on I books, everyone must sell it for at least $12.99. If Walmart or Amazon wanted to sell the book at a loss, they can't, its a violation of apples terms. That is illegal.
  • I should say its a violation of the agreement the publishers made with apple.
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  • Sounds like Karma caught up with Apple. :)