While Apple decided to hold out for a court battle — that it eventually lost — five of the publishers involved in the iBookStore price fixing antitrust case have already reached settlements with the DOJ. Two of those publishers, Penguin and Macmillan, are already sending out emails to customers to notify them that they’re eligible to receive iTunes credit, or a check for the settlement.
Following up on the Department of Justice’s revised proposed punishment from Apple’s e-book antitrust case, Apple’s lawyers filed a response this morning claiming the DOJ is trying to give Amazon an unfair advantage on e-books.
Defense attorney Orin Synder said that the DOJ’s 12-page proposal is just trying to find a remedy that will give Amazon a competitive advantage again. Synder had the following to say regarding the DOJ’s proposal that Apple allow App Store developers to sell e-books through their apps without Apple taking a cut:
Not too surprisingly, the five major publishers originally named in the U.S. Department of Justice’s e-book case regarding their collusion with Apple on pricing have now themselves filed a complaint regarding the Justice Department’s proposal to eliminate the use of the agency model in any Apple agreements with publishers for a period of five years.
Publishers like the agency model as it allows them to set prices for e-books, instead of the distributor, as Amazon did before Apple’s own iBooks system launched on the iPad.
Not only does the DoJ want Apple to stop selling e-books through the iBookstore entirely, but allow rivals like Amazon and Barnes & Noble to sell e-books in their iOS apps. In a scathing response to the DoJ’s proposal, Apple has called the proposed remedies “draconian” and “punitive.”