We just got our hands on the DOJ’s antitrust complaint against
Apple and seven major publishers, including HarperCollins,
Penguin, Simon & Schuster, and Macmillan, and it’s rather
something: the government alleges that the publishing industry
openly colluded to raise ebook prices and end Amazon’s dominance,
and that Apple was a willing participant in the scheme. What’s
more, the alleged conspiracy sounds like it was actually quite a
conspiracy, with secret CEO meetings in private New York dining
rooms and promises made to bosses up and down the chain.
I’m not sure what to think about this. Seems like the DOJ has a solid case on its hands, but before the iBookstore opened, Amazon had a stranglehold on the e-book market. Prices are higher today, but that’s because Amazon was selling those $9.99 Kindle titles at a loss.