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Old 06-05-2013, 07:35 PM   #46
fjtorres
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Originally Posted by JSWolf View Post
If Agency didn't exist, we'd have Fictionwise doing what Fictionwise did best. But because of that, we don't have Fictionwise any longer.
BooksOnBoard, too.
And, ironically, Barnes and Noble may prove to be another casualty of the Price fix. There is every indication that a good chunk of Apple's ebook market share is effectively coming out of B&N's hide. (Kobo, too.)

One thing the price fix definitely "achieved" was to consolidate the US ebook market into the major walled gardens. The higher the garden walls, the better the platform has done.
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Old 06-05-2013, 09:30 PM   #47
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Today, I just heard that it's expected to reach the Supreme Court in 3 years or so.
And the settling publishers are allowed to go back to agency in 1 1/2:

http://www.justice.gov/opa/pr/2013/F...13-at-171.html

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Under the proposed settlement agreement, Macmillan will immediately lift restrictions it has imposed on discounting and other promotions by e-book retailers and will be prohibited until December 2014 from entering into new agreements with similar restrictions.
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Old 06-05-2013, 10:27 PM   #48
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Wow, I've pretty much only read about this whole thing here and on other sites that are reader-oriented. So reading some of those "pro-Apple" comments on the first link were an eye-opener!

Agency pricing has saved me thousands of dollars.

I used to spend approx. $2000 a year on ebooks, mostly at Fictionwise. Once Agency pricing went in and *MMPB* pricing went up-up-up, I started borrowing more from the library. The habit is pretty ingrained now.

(Stressing *MMPB* because I never bought hardback, so the arguments that overall Agency pricing on hardback books went down had no affect on my spending it all).

One of the things I kept seeing in the comments was basically "if Apple got to be the one to offer the lowest price, how did that hurt consumers?!" But those comments are based on a sound-bite in the article...they don't realize that for many books, those "lower prices" were actually at least 20-25% higher than they had been before.

My personal opinion about ebooks is that they should be priced at least 20-25% less than the paper versions, given the limitations (legalities around sharing, DRM, etc) of the ebook versions. Once retailers couldn't discount ebooks, I stopped buying them (for the most part).

Last edited by FizzyWater; 06-06-2013 at 01:14 AM. Reason: fumble finger correction
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Old 06-05-2013, 10:48 PM   #49
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Agency pricing may have changed a book you would have otherwise bought to one that you skipped for being unreasonably priced.

Maybe that book was one that would have changed your life.
Or maybe someone read a public domain book instead of the latest $14.99 horror bestseller, or $14.99 bestseller about how the other US political party is a bunch of liars, and the free book changed their life.

Publishers should charge, for each product, the optimum revenue maximization price, and then pay editors and authors as much as that allows. Readers should buy what they can easily afford, and borrow the rest.
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Old 06-06-2013, 04:55 AM   #50
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Publishers should charge, for each product, the optimum revenue maximization price, and then pay editors and authors as much as that allows. Readers should buy what they can easily afford, and borrow the rest.
And retailers, after paying the publishers whatever price they set, should be able to sell to the public at whatever price is best for their business wether a high markup, a low markup or giving it away. This takes nothing away from the publishers or the authors who already have their money from when the book was sold to the retailer. Indeed the more books the retailer gives away the more money the authors get since before giving it away the retailer first has to buy it themselves. The money the authors get doesn't depend on the RETAIL price but only on the WHOLESALE price.
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Old 06-06-2013, 07:55 AM   #51
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And retailers, after paying the publishers whatever price they set, should be able to sell to the public at whatever price is best for their business wether a high markup, a low markup or giving it away. This takes nothing away from the publishers or the authors who already have their money from when the book was sold to the retailer. Indeed the more books the retailer gives away the more money the authors get since before giving it away the retailer first has to buy it themselves. The money the authors get doesn't depend on the RETAIL price but only on the WHOLESALE price.
The issue is then that the largest, wealthiest retailer can afford to keep paying the wholesale price and lose money or give stuff away long enough to force smaller competitors out of business, and then as the only reseller left they can demand lower wholesale prices, and they can raise their retail prices as high as they want.

That's considered an unfair, anti-competitive practice. The rules are there to try to make them compete by more consumer- and market-friendly means rather than by laying siege and starving everyone else out.

You can argue if that's a good idea or not in the P&R forum.
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Old 06-06-2013, 08:15 AM   #52
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The issue is then that the largest, wealthiest retailer can afford to keep paying the wholesale price and lose money or give stuff away long enough to force smaller competitors out of business, and then as the only reseller left they can demand lower wholesale prices, and they can raise their retail prices as high as they want.

That's considered an unfair, anti-competitive practice. The rules are there to try to make them compete by more consumer- and market-friendly means rather than by laying siege and starving everyone else out.
In the US, there is a whole separate organization dedicated to policing company vs company competitive disputes.
It's their job to investigate and arbitrate if possible, penalize if necessary.
With all the whining over Amazon pricing on books and everything else it is a safe bet that if they haven't acted, the have found nothing actionable.

Here:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Federal...of_Competition

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The Bureau of Competition is the division of the FTC charged with elimination and prevention of "anticompetitive" business practices. It accomplishes this through the enforcement of antitrust laws, review of proposed mergers, and investigation into other non-merger business practices that may impair competition. Such non-merger practices include horizontal restraints, involving agreements between direct competitors, and vertical restraints, involving agreements among businesses at different levels in the same industry (such as suppliers and commercial buyers).
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The FTC puts out its mission by investigating issues raised by reports from consumers and businesses, pre-merger notification filings, congressional inquiries, or reports in the media. These issues include, for instance, false advertising and other forms of fraud. FTC investigations may pertain to a single company or an entire industry. If the results of the investigation reveal unlawful conduct, the FTC may seek voluntary compliance by the offending business through a consent order, file an administrative complaint, or initiate federal litigation.
Of course, the FTC only deals with *actual* predatory pricing activities, not hypothetical smokescreens and made-up assumption.

That said, they accept consumer compaints so anybody who *knows* Amazon engages in predatory pricing *should* drop them a line. It's free, fast, and easy.

http://www.ftc.gov/ftc/contact.shtm

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Your complaint, comment, or inquiry may help us spot a pattern of law violations requiring law enforcement action. It also may help us recognize and tell people about bigger trends affecting consumers.
Show the strength of your convictions and your evidence!
Call in the feds!
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Old 06-06-2013, 08:17 AM   #53
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The issue is then that the largest, wealthiest retailer can afford to keep paying the wholesale price and lose money or give stuff away long enough to force smaller competitors out of business, and then as the only reseller left they can demand lower wholesale prices, and they can raise their retail prices as high as they want.
No. That's what anti-trust laws are there to prevent.
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Old 06-06-2013, 08:23 AM   #54
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No. That's what anti-trust laws are there to prevent.
And as the DOJ is proving at court today, they are keen to jump on any rich colluding company that tries to use its market power and deep pockets to buy into a new business at consumer expense.

(If nothing else, there are careers to be made! Think how famous the lawyer that brings down Amazon would be!)

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Old 06-06-2013, 08:58 AM   #55
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No. That's what anti-trust laws are there to prevent.
That was my point, and was what I said, wasn't it:
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That's considered an unfair, anti-competitive practice. The rules are there to try to make them compete by more consumer- and market-friendly means rather than by laying siege and starving everyone else out.
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Old 06-06-2013, 01:14 PM   #56
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The author gave up writing and became a lumberjack....
So that's what that noise was. I thought it was a zombie attack. Regardless, I escaped via my trusty vine and am now in hiding in the Crystal Caves of Zirconia.
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Old 06-06-2013, 01:51 PM   #57
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So that's what that noise was. I thought it was a zombie attack. Regardless, I escaped via my trusty vine and am now in hiding in the Crystal Caves of Zirconia.
See? Agency pricing sent you into hiding. QED.
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Old 06-06-2013, 03:23 PM   #58
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So that's what that noise was. I thought it was a zombie attack. Regardless, I escaped via my trusty vine and am now in hiding in the Crystal Caves of Zirconia.
Better make sure the structure of those crystals isn't cubic or the lumberjack will be followed by a horde of noisy ex-opera singers turned miners.
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Old 06-13-2013, 03:38 PM   #59
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Well this kind of explains why Apple thinks they did nothing wrong. Their ethic compass is broken.

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Eddy Cue, Apple's senior vice president of Internet software and services, who took the stand Thursday in district court in lower Manhattan, also said Apple considered splitting the market with Amazon in a setup where Apple would control the music market, while Amazon would monopolize books.
news.cnet.com/8301-13579_3-57589185-37/apples-eddy-cue-yep-we-caused-e-book-pricing-to-rise/
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Old 06-18-2013, 08:52 AM   #60
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"The Apple e-books trial takes a detour into the absurd"

http://tech.fortune.cnn.com/2013/06/...ce=yahoo_quote
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