eBook Price Fixing Being Investigated for Amazon and Apple
Connecticut Attorney General Richard Blumenthal has announced that an investigation will be conducted to see if Amazon and Apple are getting a price advantage from publishers over their competitors.
Blumenthal has sent letters to each company requesting them to send a representative for a meeting in his office to discuss their deals with eBook publishers such as Macmillan, Simon & Schuster, Hachette, HarperCollins and Penguin.
Blumenthal thinks that Amazon and Apple are getting favored in prices which makes it possible for them to offer eBooks at a much lower price than any of their competitors. While such straightforward deals are not illegal, the Attorney General says that they are also “not always legal” specially if there’s other clauses to the contract.
In his statement, Blumenthal wrote, “The concerns are compounded, and hence potentially more troublesome, since this arrangement appears to be something that will be agreed to by the largest e-book publishers in the United States and two competitors who combined will likely command the greatest retail e-book share.”