Another class action lawsuit has been filed against Apple and the “big 6” publishers over agency pricing. Unlike the other lawsuit earlier this month, this one also includes Random House among the defendants. But like that other suit, it alleges that Apple and the publishers colluded on an e-book price-fixing scheme. The law firm filing the suit seeks to represent the class of people who purchased a defendant’s e-book for more than $9.99 since April 1, 2010.

While I’m not quite as optimistic as Paul that the eventual outcome will do away with agency pricing, I have to admit it’s fun watching the whirlwind Apple and the publishers have sown starting to sprout.

(Found via eBookNewser.)


  1. Both these lawsuits seem to forget two things, or at least mention their importance: 1) Agency model was not about price, it was bout publishers controlling their product. That is why Amazon, Barnes and Nobles and others are no longer selling e-books, they are now distributing them. The 30% becomes their distribution fee. 2) E-book readers are no longer buying the book, but licensing it. The public doesn’t understand these two things. E-books are not the same as print books. Publishers are now selling directly to customers and can set whatever price they want.

  2. @SMA If control is what they want, then why distribute it over the Internet? Publishers do not seem to realize that anything can be cracked. It’s like they do not even have a security consultant make sure the encryption is the equivalent of what we have for encryption of credit card numbers, which is crackable, but not worth the time to crack. Yes, E-books are not the same as print, but that is also a point about control. With print, the control every aspect of the product, except for how a consumer uses it. As for eBooks being licenses, if all it is is a license, then why does it cost so much? Programs have development costs and such, so that makes sense, but E-books are created by the software available, so the cost is not the same as program development (I know this because I make Kindle ebooks and EPUBs).

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