Apple and 5 publishers sued over eBook pricing

Earlier this month, a class-action lawsuit was filed in the Northern District of California against Apple, Simon & Schuster, MacMillan, HarperCollins, Penguin, and Hachette.  The lawsuit alleges that the companies worked together to develop a pricing model that created an unfair economic advantage.

Apple is accused of working together with the publishers to establish their “agency model” of eBook pricing, which would compete with the previously established “wholesale model” established by Amazon.  In 2007, Amazon’s Kindle “revolutionized the book publishing industry” and priced e-books at $9.99 each.

Amazon’s model posed a serious risk for publishers needing to make a profit.  Therefore, many of the nation’s largest publishers reached agreement with Apple to chose their own pricing and in exchange give Apple 30 percent of their profits.

According to the lawsuit, as a “direct result of this anticompetitive conduct as intended by the conspiracy, the price of eBooks has soared.”

If your business has been hurt by a case of contract interference of economic advantage, contact the Orange County economic advantage lawyers of Daily Aljian at 949-861-2524 and set up an appointment to meet with one of our experienced commercial litigation attorneys.