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Old 03-19-2013, 07:56 PM   #31
Ralph Sir Edward
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Originally Posted by fjtorres View Post
The supreme court was pretty straightforward: the court found that the law, as written, does
not distinguish geographically and that, since a previous version of law did, it was clear Congress had chosen to remove geographic restrictions to the first sales rights of consumers. Thereby they reversed the court of appeals and restored the status quo ante.
No new law was made, either by SCOTUS or the appeals court.
If the publishers feel put upon, they have the constitutional right to petition Congress for euro-style protectionist relief.
Buy enough politicians and they'll be home free.
(Of course, that assumes they buy honest politicians; the kind that stays bought.)
Are there any (in the US)?
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Old 03-19-2013, 07:58 PM   #32
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VERY bad ideal to legalise the "grey imports" business, IMHO. Market conditions are different in different parts of the world, and it's very common for publishers to produce low-cost editions for developing markets such as India and Thailand. The only effect of this decision will be to stop the publication of such editions.
Amazing how it's good to arbitrage labor across the world, but oh my Ghod, we <can't> arbatrage I.P.

Who'd have thunk it....
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Old 03-19-2013, 08:55 PM   #33
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Prices are set at what the market will bear. The US market will bear a lot more than the Thai market for these books, but I assume the publisher isn't losing money on its Thai sales; they're still profitable...
You're pretty much forced to pay the high prices in the US, I don't know "what the market will bear" has to do with it.
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Old 03-19-2013, 09:02 PM   #34
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Originally Posted by CyGuy View Post
If the same book is cheaper in Thailand then someone is overcharging for the book here.
Personally, I don't buy the just price theory. I make this point for those who do:

Grey market book binding and paper used to be much inferior. In as much as this is still true -- Wikipedia's grey market article says quality has been improving -- your point is moot.

Quote:
Originally Posted by HarryT View Post
The only effect of this decision will be to stop the publication of such editions.
I don't think so because the ruling ratified our status quo.

I suppose some bigger players might be tempted to enter the US retail grey market because of the ruling. But the market can't be overly large because of the FUD factor regarding the question of whether the import version is identical. Publishers issue a different ISBN number for overseas editions, and can easily change pagination.

Most students looking for a bargain will continue to buy used, and then sell the used book back to a store at the end of the semester. It is hard for the textbook grey market to compete against that business model.

P.S. Most US universities have textbooks kept on reserve for in-library reading, bringing the student price down to zero (or a little higher because the library is included in the tuition price). Our own children aren't spendthifts, but, unlike me, aren't real library-lovers either. So we've mostly let them buy used, with a little grey market, and a little--gulp--new.

Last edited by SteveEisenberg; 03-19-2013 at 09:18 PM.
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Old 03-19-2013, 11:29 PM   #35
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Grey Market has been around for a long time with watches. Most discount chains are selling grey market watches. For example Seiko's come with a 3 year warranty. One year is good any where in the world. The last two years are only valid in the country the watch was manufactured to be sold in. So in effect grey market watches have a one year warranty unless you are willing to send it to the country it was originally to be sold in.
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Old 03-19-2013, 11:43 PM   #36
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SteveEisenberg View Post
P.S. Most US universities have textbooks kept on reserve for in-library reading, bringing the student price down to zero (or a little higher because the library is included in the tuition price). Our own children aren't spendthifts, but, unlike me, aren't real library-lovers either. So we've mostly let them buy used, with a little grey market, and a little--gulp--new.
But on the other hand, the student is still going to fail the book check at the beginning of the semester, and is going to have to share the text with every other student who needs it- possibly several thousand for one prof alone.

And I'd also imagine that'd require the prof allowing the textbook to be put on reserve. Instead of, y'know, checking it out for the duration of the semester to make sure their students *have* to buy the textbook?

Just because taking kickbacks is illegal, only means you get in trouble if you get caught.
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Old 03-19-2013, 11:54 PM   #37
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Quote:
Originally Posted by fjtorres View Post
If the publishers feel put upon, they have the constitutional right to petition Congress for euro-style protectionist relief.
Buy enough politicians and they'll be home free.
(Of course, that assumes they buy honest politicians; the kind that stays bought.)
This may be the test for how profitable the publishing business truly is. Do they have enough cash to either buy or rent the requisite number of politicians?
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Old 03-20-2013, 12:50 AM   #38
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Quote:
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But on the other hand, the student is still going to fail the book check at the beginning of the semester, and is going to have to share the text with every other student who needs it- possibly several thousand for one prof alone.

And I'd also imagine that'd require the prof allowing the textbook to be put on reserve. Instead of, y'know, checking it out for the duration of the semester to make sure their students *have* to buy the textbook?

Just because taking kickbacks is illegal, only means you get in trouble if you get caught.
Then there are the cases when the professor has written the textbook in question, and therefore profits in requiring the students to use that text.
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Old 03-20-2013, 01:42 AM   #39
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You're pretty much forced to pay the high prices in the US, I don't know "what the market will bear" has to do with it.
Really? You've been forced to buy a book? In what way? Did someone put a gun to your head? Threaten you with a knife? A club? Fists, at least?
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Old 03-20-2013, 03:08 AM   #40
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Originally Posted by vaughnmr View Post
You're pretty much forced to pay the high prices in the US, I don't know "what the market will bear" has to do with it.
It means the same as with any other thing someone's selling. If the price is too high, the book doesn't sell. Yes, even when colleges and professors collude with the publisher.

But the real point is that the publisher would still make a profit at the grey market price. So if a reseller is undercutting the publisher on US sales, then the free market is doing its job!
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Old 03-20-2013, 04:12 AM   #41
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Sorry I need clarification on what this means. If you have the right to legally resell digital content purchased somewhere else, but code such as DRM prevents you from sharing and therefore reselling content, does this ruling potentially impact DRM? e.g. DRM prevents you reselling ebooks unlike a pbook which can be traded on once you have finshed with it.
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Old 03-20-2013, 04:53 AM   #42
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Grey Market has been around for a long time with watches. Most discount chains are selling grey market watches. For example Seiko's come with a 3 year warranty. One year is good any where in the world. The last two years are only valid in the country the watch was manufactured to be sold in. So in effect grey market watches have a one year warranty unless you are willing to send it to the country it was originally to be sold in.
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Old 03-20-2013, 05:06 AM   #43
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Sorry I need clarification on what this means. If you have the right to legally resell digital content purchased somewhere else, but code such as DRM prevents you from sharing and therefore reselling content, does this ruling potentially impact DRM? e.g. DRM prevents you reselling ebooks unlike a pbook which can be traded on once you have finshed with it.
The courts have previously ruled that the fact that you have a legal right to do something with digital media doesn't make it permissible to remove DRM in order to be able to do so, except in certain well-defined situations (such as for disabled people). Eg, in the "RealDVD" case the court ruled that simply because there was a legal right to be able to create a backup copy of a DVD, that didn't mean that it was legal to remove DRM to permit you to do so.

I would imagine that this would also apply to resale, although the overwhelming majority (if not all) digital media doesn't permit resale anyway.
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Old 03-20-2013, 05:29 AM   #44
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I would imagine that this would also apply to resale, although the overwhelming majority (if not all) digital media doesn't permit resale anyway.
But those clauses forbidding resale have become less relevant with this ruling of the supreme court.

Media distributors can put any clause in sale contracts they want, if they can't be legally held up nobody is bound to them.
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Old 03-20-2013, 05:47 AM   #45
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But those clauses forbidding resale have become less relevant with this ruling of the supreme court.

Media distributors can put any clause in sale contracts they want, if they can't be legally held up nobody is bound to them.
I don't believe this ruling will have any impact on reselling digital media, although I may of course be wrong.
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