U.S. District Judge to Appoint Monitor to Review Appleā€™s Antitrust Compliance Policies

Apple Under Fire for E-Book Pricing Policies, Conspiracy

by Anton Shilov
09/06/2013 | 11:10 PM

Denise Cote, the U.S. district judge, on Friday said she would appoint a special monitor to review Apple’s antitrust compliance policies. The supervisor is projected to review various deals that Apple makes with copyright owners when it comes to electronic books. At the same time, the judge did not order a broader evaluation of deals that Apple makes regarding music, video and programs that it sells.

 

Judge Denise Cote ruled in July that Apple was responsible for conspiring with five publishers, including Hachette Book Group, HarperCollins Publishers, Penguin Random House, Simon & Schuster and Macmillan to raise e-book prices above those established by the dominant retailer in the market, Amazon.com, reports Reuters news-agency. In order to avoid similar actions in the future, the judge intends to appoint an external monitor to review Apple’s deals concerning e-book publishing.

“Apple shall not enter into or maintain any agreement with an e-book publisher where such agreement likely will increase, fix, or set the price at which other e-book retailers can acquire or sell e-books,” said Ms. Cote in the order, reports Bloomberg news-agency.

 

Apple’s actions concerning princes of e-books will be under control for five years with possible extensions for another two years. By that time e-books will likely prevail paper books in sales and the market will decide their prices.

”Apple did not conspire to fix e-book pricing. The iBooks gave customers more choice and injected much needed innovation and competition into the market. […] [The iBookstore] gave customers more choice and injected much needed innovation and competition into the market,” said Tom Neumayr, a representative for Apple.