Wednesday, May 18, 2016

DOJ Says Publishers Are Again Colluding in Objecting to Proposed Penalty in E-Book Case

With and the U.S. Department of Justice hded back to court today for a hring on the government'sproposed penaltiesfor ,GigaOMhighlightsseveral developments in the case. Of particular interest is a letter from DOJ attorney Lawrence Buterman arguing that anobjectionto the proposed penalties by the publishers that were part of the case is direct evidence of why the penalties are needed to protect consumers.
“A necessary component of this Court’s decision finding liable for horizontal price-fixing is that the publishers themselves were engaged in a horizontal price-fixing conspiracy…[There] is rson to believe the Publisher Defendants may be positioning themselves to pick things back up where they left off as soon as their two-yr clocks run. Indeed, the very fact that the Publisher Defendants have banded together once again, this time to jointly oppose two provisions in the Proposed Final Judgment that they believe could result in lower ebook prices for consumers, only highlights why it is necessary to ensure that (and hopefully other retailers) can discount ebooks and compete on retail price for as long as possible.” has called the proposed penalties, which would force the company to allow competitors to bring back direct links to their e-book stores in their App Store apps and ify existing "acy model" contracts with publishers, "draconian" and "punitive". could also end up being liable for as much as$500 million in damages.

At today's hring, will also argue for a stay on further court proceedings until its appl can be hrd, proposing that a jury trial be held in October 2014. The DOJ is arguing against a stay and suggesting that an appl trial should be held beginning in April 2014.

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