04.08.10 21:27 Age: 9 yrs
Amazon and Apple under monopoly investigation for pricing of e-books
According to foreign media, the attorney-general’s office in the US state of Connecticut lead by Richard Blumenthal is investigating the cooperation deals between Amazon, Apple and leading publishers, concerning possible antitrust violations. And they specifically intend to find out whether the companies are using their size in the market to prevent other retailers from offering lower-priced titles.
The primary investigation indicates that the e-book price of the Amazon, Apple, Borders Group Inc., Barnes &Noble Inc in best-sellers is identical. And the situation is seemed to be caused by the agreement they have reached, which could be “to the ultimate detriment to the consumer”.
Apple, Amazon and the leading publishers have reached an agreement in Agency Pricing Model, which means the publisher can set the retail price on their own and get 70% from the sales. While the price is set by publishers, the amount may be beyond a reasonable level and harm the consumer’s right. The agency pricing model also leads to a uniform of the e-book price on all websites.
Although the Agency Pricing Model is widely criticized, some publishers think it may bring benefit to the competition in the e-book market since the model can bring profit to the e-book retailers and thus attract more corporations to begin the sale.
“The sales of e-book is getting an violent increase in recent years，publishers and book retailers in China should seize the opportunity and focus on this promising market. Governments should also notice the development and take an active attitude in the legislation of this field.” suggested Edward E. Lehman, Managing Director of Lehman, Lee & Xu.
Lehman, Lee & Xu is a prominent Chinese corporate law firm and trademark and patent agency. The firm has also been recognized as one of the top full service and intellectual property firms in China by several international magazines. It now has offices in Beijing, Shanghai, Shenzhen, Hong Kong, Macau, and Mongolia. The firm is managed by Mr. Edward Lehman, a leading expert on corporate law with over twenty years of practice experience in Mainland China.
To learn more about us, please visit our website at www.lehmanlaw.com