Quantcast
Latest Stories

Publishers want US to shelve Apple e-book restrictions



SAN FRANCISCO – Heavyweight publishers on Wednesday came out swinging against a bid by the US Department of Justice to rein in deals Apple can make with e-book providers.

A fair goer tries out the textunes eBook reader app on an Apple iPad at the Leipzig Book Fair on March 15, 2012 on the fairgrounds in Leipzig, eastern Germany. AFP

HarperCollins, Penguin, Simon & Schuster and others joined together in a legal brief opposing “remedies” proposed by the DOJ as punishment for Apple’s conviction in an e-book price-fixing case.

“The plaintiffs are attempting to impose a specific business model on the publishing industry, despite their express and repeated representations that they would play no such role,” the publishers argued.

On Friday, the Justice Department launched a bid to more tightly regulate Apple’s wildly lucrative iTunes storefront after the tech giant was found guilty of conspiring with publishers to fix prices.

The proposed settlement would see Apple end its current agreements with five US-based publishers: Hachette Book Group, HarperCollins, Macmillan, Penguin and Simon & Schuster.

The tech firm would promise not to enter new contracts with the five to limit price competition in the next five years, and would allow other e-book retailers to link to their products from iPad and iPhone apps for two years.

“The provisions do not impose any limitation on Apple’s pricing behavior at all,” the publishers argued in the filing.

“Rather, under the guise of punishing Apple, they effectively punish (publishers that settled in the case) by prohibiting agreements with Apple to use the agency model.”

The agency model lets publishers dictate prices for eBooks, while sellers such as Apple or Amazon are paid a fee for each sale.

The DOJ order goes further, prohibiting the iPhone maker from seeking to drive up prices by signing “agreements with suppliers of e-books, music, movies, television shows or other content.”

Apple condemned the DOJ proposal in a brief filed with the court on Friday.

“Plaintiffs’ proposed injunction is a draconian and punitive intrusion into Apple’s business, wildly out of proportion to any adjudicated wrongdoing or potential harm,” Apple attorneys argued in the legal brief.

Publishers argued that the DOJ’s plan contradicts settlements negotiated in the case.

Under the existing settlements, the publishers agreed to end any agreements they have with retailers like Apple to prevent them from discounting titles sold through their platforms.

Through its devices and software, Apple allows readers to buy electronic versions of books online and download them to personal digital libraries.

In this it competes with other retailers such as Amazon and Barnes & Noble, which sell e-books for reading on computers, smartphones, or tablets.

The DOJ’s proposal is essentially telling Apple “to get out of the e-book business,” said Gartner analyst Van Baker.

“It is basically putting a stake through a portion of Apple’s business, and I confess to being surprised by that,” he continued.

“It strikes me as a pretty heavy-handed solution to the issue.”

Last month, a US district court in New York found Apple guilty of conspiring with publishers to fix book prices for readers using its iPad and iPhone devices.

The DOJ lodged a civil antitrust lawsuit against Apple and the publishers in April last year.

It has since reached settlements with four of the publishers and has an agreement with Macmillan that is yet to be approved by the court.

The DOJ’s proposed Apple’s settlement still has to be approved by a federal judge.


Follow us on Facebook Follow on Twitter Follow on Twitter




Recent Stories:

Celebrating Easter and creativity in New York 6 mins elapsed Man wins half marathon, dies in Argentina 28 mins elapsed Clouds to bring slight relief from summer heat 38 mins elapsed Reigning champs Miami open playoffs with win 39 mins elapsed Miss America: Don’t suspend teen over prom invite 41 mins elapsed Canadians rally to legalize marijuana 59 mins elapsed Spurs subdue Mavericks in playoff opener 1 hour elapsed S. Korea ferry transcript reveals evacuation panic 1 hour elapsed
Complete stories on our Digital Edition newsstand for tablets, netbooks and mobile phones; 14-issue free trial. About to step out? Get breaking alerts on your mobile.phone. Text ON INQ BREAKING to 4467, for Globe, Smart and Sun subscribers in the Philippines.

Tags: Apple , E-books , Publishing , technology



Copyright © 2014,
.
To subscribe to the Philippine Daily Inquirer newspaper in the Philippines, call +63 2 896-6000 for Metro Manila and Metro Cebu or email your subscription request here.
Factual errors? Contact the Philippine Daily Inquirer's day desk. Believe this article violates journalistic ethics? Contact the Inquirer's Reader's Advocate. Or write The Readers' Advocate:
c/o Philippine Daily Inquirer Chino Roces Avenue corner Yague and Mascardo Streets, Makati City, Metro Manila, Philippines Or fax nos. +63 2 8974793 to 94
Advertisement Advertisement
  1. Nasa’s moon-orbiting robot crashes down
  2. Did Deniece Cornejo lambast Vhong Navarro on social media?
  3. Netizens seethe over Aquino’s ‘sacrifice’ message
  4. Facebook rolls out ‘nearby friends’ feature
  5. Filipinos #PrayForSouthKorea
  6. Nokia recalls 30,000 chargers for Lumia 2520 tablet
  7. Mommy Dionisia sings ‘Riking Bull,’sends netizens ablaze
  8. Netizens pay respects to Gabriel Garcia Marquez
  9. Taylor Swift tries video blogging, crashes into fan’s bridal shower
  10. Aquino may be ousted for cybercrime law, says lawmaker
  1. Did Deniece Cornejo lambast Vhong Navarro on social media?
  2. Mommy Dionisia sings ‘Riking Bull,’sends netizens ablaze
  3. Mommy Dionisia Pacquiao scores, takes over social media
  4. Netizens seethe over Aquino’s ‘sacrifice’ message
  5. IT technician found guilty of defrauding firm of P130,000
  6. Netizens react to Pacquiao’s victory over Bradley
  7. Memes flourish after Pacquiao victory
  8. Philippines may watch ‘blood moon’ online
  9. Online-addicted man arrested over son’s death
  10. Nasa’s moon-orbiting robot crashes down
  1. #RejectedBbPilipinas2014Questions flood Twitter
  2. Did Deniece Cornejo lambast Vhong Navarro on social media?
  3. Netizens fall in love with Crimea prosecutor Natalia Poklonskaya
  4. Mommy Dionisia Pacquiao scores, takes over social media
  5. Nude and so dangerous
  6. Mommy Dionisia sings ‘Riking Bull,’sends netizens ablaze
  7. Russia tries to curb Crimean prosecutor’s Internet fame
  8. Memes flourish after Pacquiao victory
  9. Netizens thank Capa for Lee arrest
  10. Filipino artist copies piece from digital art

News

  • Celebrating Easter and creativity in New York
  • Man wins half marathon, dies in Argentina
  • Clouds to bring slight relief from summer heat
  • Canadians rally to legalize marijuana
  • S. Korea ferry transcript reveals evacuation panic
  • Sports

  • Reigning champs Miami open playoffs with win
  • Spurs subdue Mavericks in playoff opener
  • Wawrinka beats Federer to win Monte Carlo Masters
  • Ageless Hopkins pitches 50-50 Mayweather deal
  • Goodbye MGM, Las Vegas for Pacquiao?
  • Lifestyle

  • Miss America: Don’t suspend teen over prom invite
  • Transitions and resurrection in the performing arts
  • ‘Archaeology tour’ of Cebu’s heritage of faith
  • Historic Fort Bonifacio tunnel converted into a septic tank
  • ‘Imports’ from London, and play of the year
  • Entertainment

  • ‘Captain America’ stays strong atop US box office
  • Easter musings
  • Solenn in shorts
  • Unmerry mix of attention-calling moves on ‘Mini-Me’ TV tilts
  • Persistence pays off for The 1975
  • Business

  • BDO seen keen on bidding for Cocobank
  • Bataan freeport investment pledges up 1,302%
  • Golden Week
  • Bourse to woo Cebu stock mart investors
  • Supper power
  • Technology

  • Nasa’s moon-orbiting robot crashes down
  • Netizens pay respects to Gabriel Garcia Marquez
  • Nokia recalls 30,000 chargers for Lumia 2520 tablet
  • Facebook rolls out ‘nearby friends’ feature
  • Netizens seethe over Aquino’s ‘sacrifice’ message
  • Opinion

  • Gigi’s home
  • Palace stonewalls on MRT inquiry
  • Couple of things too
  • There is plenty of water behind Wawa Dam
  • Triduum thoughts of a young boy
  • Global Nation

  • Search for Etihad passengers launched
  • Japan presents $57-B ‘dream plan’ to solve Metro congestion
  • Tim Tebow’s charity hospital in Davao seen to open in 7 months
  • OFW died of Mers-CoV in Saudi Arabia, says family
  • Aquino, Obama to tackle US pivot to Asia during state visit
  • Advertisement
    Marketplace