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MacRumors
Jun 13, 2013, 01:35 PM
http://images.macrumors.com/im/macrumorsthreadlogo.gif (http://www.macrumors.com/2013/06/13/apple-svp-eddy-cue-takes-stand-in-e-book-trial-admits-some-e-books-rose-in-price/)


http://images.macrumors.com/article-new/2013/06/eddycue.jpgEddy Cue, Apple's senior vice president in charge of internet software and services, took the stand today (http://finance.yahoo.com/news/exec-ny-trial-apple-didnt-181147420.html) in the Department of Justice's antitrust case against Apple over the price of e-books following the launch of the iBooks Store in 2010.

Cue is Apple's chief negotiator and was in charge of all discussions with the major book publishing houses. The DoJ is alleging that Apple illegally worked with publishers to artificially increase e-book prices, a violation of U.S. antitrust laws.

In testimony today, Cue admitted that the prices of some e-books -- including many of those appearing on the New York Times best sellers list -- did rise after the iBooks Store was opened, but it was more the result of publishers being unhappy with Amazon's pricing of $9.99/book than anything untoward that Apple did.

Instead, Cue said that prices rose (http://news.cnet.com/8301-13579_3-57589185-37/apples-eddy-cue-yep-we-caused-e-book-pricing-to-rise/) because publishers "expressed to us that they wanted higher prices". Apple's pricing model for e-books is the same agency model that it uses on the App Store -- publishers set book prices and Apple takes 30% of the revenue while returning 70% to the publishers.

He also said that he didn't know if publishers were working together on the negotiations with Apple and Amazon, but because all the publishers had issues with different parts of Apple's proposed contract Cue said that "if they talked together, I assumed it would be easier to get the deals done." Cue also said that he "wasn't trying to negotiate" for the entire e-book market and he wasn't attempting to fix issues the publishers had with Amazon.

Article Link: Apple SVP Eddy Cue Takes Stand in E-Book Trial, Admits Some E-Books Rose in Price (http://www.macrumors.com/2013/06/13/apple-svp-eddy-cue-takes-stand-in-e-book-trial-admits-some-e-books-rose-in-price/)



NoNothing
Jun 13, 2013, 01:40 PM
This entire trial makes you wonder who at Amazon bribed whom at the DOJ.

jfx94
Jun 13, 2013, 01:42 PM
I like that guy, Cue. He makes a lot of sense.

I'm glad some of the higher profile people are testifying and are able to set the record straight, hopefully limiting unfounded assumptions.

lolkthxbai
Jun 13, 2013, 01:43 PM
I still don't understand what Apple allegedly did wrong. They set up shop a charged a higher price?

zman2100
Jun 13, 2013, 01:45 PM
The Verge reports (http://www.theverge.com/2013/6/13/4426964/doj-to-apple-eddy-cue-did-your-customers-thank-you-for-raising-prices) that at one point the DOJ attorney asked Eddy Cue if Apple's customers thanked Apple for raising prices.

street.cory
Jun 13, 2013, 02:03 PM
As much as I love Apple, there did seem to be something fishy going on with this whole pricing fiasco. I often found that some books that were digital were around the same price as a paperback version.

Although, I don't really use iBooks very much considering it isn't cross platform and they didn't have availability for use on computers.

boomeringue
Jun 13, 2013, 02:12 PM
I still don't understand what Apple allegedly did wrong. They set up shop a charged a higher price?

It's illegal to collude in a monopolistic way to game a mature marketplace for more profit. If every airline were to get together and jointly decide to raise prices on a NY-LA route by $100, that's illegal.

The DOJ's argument is that Apple sat down with the 6 major book companies and colluded to raise prices on the ebook market. Their argument fails because a) it wasn't a mature marketplace, since the 'eBooks market' had been around only for a few years, and only had one main player (Amazon), who had like 90% of the market, and b) Amazon was selling many of their eBooks for far below the intended price for eBooks. In many cases, Amazon was selling eBooks on their store for at or below wholesale price, which they were doing essentially to keep pricing pressure on brick and mortar bookstores and eventually drive more of them out of business.

So essentially Amazon was the one using a monopoly to control prices. Funny how things work that way.

samcraig
Jun 13, 2013, 02:28 PM
"Cue admitted that the prices of some e-books -- including many of those appearing on the New York Times best sellers list -- did rise after the iBooks Store was opened, but it was more the result of publishers being unhappy with Amazon's pricing of $9.99/book than anything untoward that Apple did."

So is he saying it was just a coincidence? :rolleyes:

If publishers had been unhappy before Apple's involvement in the eBook market - why hadn't prices gone up?

"So essentially Amazon was the one using a monopoly to control prices. Funny how things work that way. "

Only Amazon never had a monopoly.

TMay
Jun 13, 2013, 02:54 PM
Only Amazon never had a monopoly.

But they certainly were attempting, it in my opinion. Looks like they will have to be happy with 65% of the U.S. market.

----------

If publishers had been unhappy before Apple's involvement in the eBook market - why hadn't prices gone up?


Publishers had no price control with the wholesale model.

Tigger11
Jun 13, 2013, 03:05 PM
Only Amazon never had a monopoly.

Amazon met every necessary requirement for a Monopoly in the ebook market before Apple entered the market, they were the source of over 90% of the ebooks at that time. How exactly do you think they were not a monopoly?

unlinked
Jun 13, 2013, 03:13 PM
The Verge reports (http://www.theverge.com/2013/6/13/4426964/doj-to-apple-eddy-cue-did-your-customers-thank-you-for-raising-prices) that at one point the DOJ attorney asked Eddy Cue if Apple's customers thanked Apple for raising prices.

They also reported Apple considered offering Amazon a you keep out of music and we keep out of books deal.

AppleMark
Jun 13, 2013, 03:19 PM
Amazon met every necessary requirement for a Monopoly in the ebook market before Apple entered the market, they were the source of over 90% of the ebooks at that time. How exactly do you think they were not a monopoly?

Amazon and others settled this [paid-up $ for their part in this] so they would not need to explain themselves further.

Apple are claiming they did nothing wrong, so this has nothing to do with Amazon, only Apple right now.

samcraig
Jun 13, 2013, 03:22 PM
But they certainly were attempting, it in my opinion. Looks like they will have to be happy with 65% of the U.S. market.

----------



Publishers had no price control with the wholesale model.

Publishers could charge anything they wanted. Could they control what Amazon charged? No. And I'm not arguing against or for either model. But if Apple and the publishers are guilty of collusion - no matter how "good" it might have been or "bad" it might have been - it's illegal.

And every business tries to attain as much marketshare as possible. I'm not sure I get your point.

Look at Apple and the music business. Are you suggesting Apple wouldn't like to have 90 or more percent of the share? :confused:

Amazon met every necessary requirement for a Monopoly in the ebook market before Apple entered the market, they were the source of over 90% of the ebooks at that time. How exactly do you think they were not a monopoly?

Again - Amazon did not have a monopoly. Did Apple have a music monopoly?

Mr.damien
Jun 13, 2013, 03:32 PM
I like that guy, Cue. He makes a lot of sense.

I'm glad some of the higher profile people are testifying and are able to set the record straight, hopefully limiting unfounded assumptions.

Yeah he admitted during the trial that indeed Apple made the prices goes up and you like that.

Like DOJ said: 'Did your customers thank you for raising prices?'

http://www.theverge.com/2013/6/13/4426964/doj-to-apple-eddy-cue-did-your-customers-thank-you-for-raising-prices

tdmac
Jun 13, 2013, 03:37 PM
Publishers could charge anything they wanted. Could they control what Amazon charged? No. And I'm not arguing against or for either model. But if Apple and the publishers are guilty of collusion - no matter how "good" it might have been or "bad" it might have been - it's illegal.

And every business tries to attain as much marketshare as possible. I'm not sure I get your point.


But, could the publishers charge anything they wanted? I don't believe so. Amazon decimated competition in the paper book market and had a huge share of the market. Thus, they were able to dictate terms on the ebook market. Thus, no windowing of ebooks and the lower cost of ebooks, which in turn were eroding the profits from the publishers hardcover books. Why would publishers want that. They had no choice since Amazon was the market leader in hardcover books and there wasn't anyone else in the marketplace to go to. By having the ebook market pretty locked up Amazon was killing the hardcover book market, thus pushing the industry in that direction. All funneling it to the Kindle platform and no viable competitor.

TMay
Jun 13, 2013, 03:47 PM
Publishers could charge anything they wanted. Could they control what Amazon charged? No. And I'm not arguing against or for either model. But if Apple and the publishers are guilty of collusion - no matter how "good" it might have been or "bad" it might have been - it's illegal.

And every business tries to attain as much marketshare as possible. I'm not sure I get your point.

Look at Apple and the music business. Are you suggesting Apple wouldn't like to have 90 or more percent of the share? :confused:



Again - Amazon did not have a monopoly. Did Apple have a music monopoly?
With Apple's business model, i.e. profit, and the Agency Model that Publishers' desired, there wasn't any barrier to entry for competitors. Similarly this has worked for music, video and most likely audio books.

The fact that Amazon uses the Agency model for newspapers and magazines indicates to me that Amazon didn't have any issues with the model per se, other than the desire, in my opinion, to take an early movers shareholder advantage in ebooks to a 90% shareholder position, at least long enough to disrupt brick and mortar competitors.

Whether Amazon would use that same shareholder position to control the Publishers seems to be a given; they did and it isn't illegal. Whether the Publishers colluded is now water under the bridge.

Whether Apple colluded is the question, and the answer so for appears to be, again in my opinion: no.

What the DOJ should be asking isn't what was the price that Amazon was offering Bestsellers at, but what was the natural pricing without the subsidized (i.e. Predatory) pricing of Bestsellers that Amazon brought to the market. That is what I as a consumer would expect to pay in a healthy ebook market.

----------

Yeah he admitted during the trial that indeed Apple made the prices goes up and you like that.

Like DOJ said: 'Did your customers thank you for raising prices?'

http://www.theverge.com/2013/6/13/4426964/doj-to-apple-eddy-cue-did-your-customers-thank-you-for-raising-prices

It's also true that Amazon created unnaturally low pricing.

Tigger11
Jun 13, 2013, 03:55 PM
Amazon and others settled this [paid-up $ for their part in this] so they would not need to explain themselves further.

Apple are claiming they did nothing wrong, so this has nothing to do with Amazon, only Apple right now.

Applemark, samcraig is again arguing that Amazon NEVER had a monopoly on ebook distribution, that is a ludicrous and inaccurate statement, you really want to be part of the Amazon was never a monopoly crowd?
-Tig

----------


If publishers had been unhappy before Apple's involvement in the eBook market - why hadn't prices gone up?


Because Amazon was selling at whatever price they wanted to, and was dictating what price they would buy books at, selling books at a loss in many many cases. See the Macmillan and Amazon dispute of 2010 or any of the small publishers they bullied starting back as long as 2007. Prices didn't go up because Amazon was selling the books at a loss, we've discussed that, at one point one of my wife's novels was selling for that amount she got per unit, that makes me real sure that Amazon was selling it at a loss as an Ebook.

samcraig
Jun 13, 2013, 04:19 PM
Whether Apple colluded is the question, and the answer so for appears to be, again in my opinion: no.



in your opinion.

It's ok if I don't agree with you at the moment though based on everything I've read and the testimony so far, right?

GadgetDon
Jun 13, 2013, 04:20 PM
"So essentially Amazon was the one using a monopoly to control prices. Funny how things work that way. "

Only Amazon never had a monopoly.

Amazon controlled nearly all of the "best seller" ebook market (some niches had the publishers selling their own ebook), engaged in predatory pricing by discounting to near or below cost to ensure no other retailer could enter the market, and used their market power in physical books to threaten publishers who didn't play ball with them on eBooks.

As such, the ebook market was the Kindle market. You can argue that wasn't a monopoly, but Amazon controlled the market and was taking active steps to ensure that didn't change. And not only did the DoJ ignore this anti-competitive behavior, the state department gave Amazon a non-bid contract to provide ebooks and ebook readers because of that control.

And since you compared it to Apple's music - Apple never gave up their 30% margin so when the publishers were unhappy with Apple's control of the online music business and gave Amazon both non-DRMed music (which Apple had been asking for) and a lower price, Apple didn't go running to the DoJ screaming "collusion".

Now I will say that if there had been a deal struck between Apple and Amazon, Apple gets music and Amazon gets books, that WOULD have been collusion and Apple would have been in deep trouble for it (and maybe Amazon would FINALLY have taken a step the DoJ couldn't ignore).

samcraig
Jun 13, 2013, 04:39 PM
Amazon controlled nearly all of the "best seller" ebook market (some niches had the publishers selling their own ebook), engaged in predatory pricing by discounting to near or below cost to ensure no other retailer could enter the market, and used their market power in physical books to threaten publishers who didn't play ball with them on eBooks.

As such, the ebook market was the Kindle market. You can argue that wasn't a monopoly, but Amazon controlled the market and was taking active steps to ensure that didn't change. And not only did the DoJ ignore this anti-competitive behavior, the state department gave Amazon a non-bid contract to provide ebooks and ebook readers because of that control.

And since you compared it to Apple's music - Apple never gave up their 30% margin so when the publishers were unhappy with Apple's control of the online music business and gave Amazon both non-DRMed music (which Apple had been asking for) and a lower price, Apple didn't go running to the DoJ screaming "collusion".

Now I will say that if there had been a deal struck between Apple and Amazon, Apple gets music and Amazon gets books, that WOULD have been collusion and Apple would have been in deep trouble for it (and maybe Amazon would FINALLY have taken a step the DoJ couldn't ignore).

I can argue it wasn't a monopoly. I can also argue that Amazon has not been found guilty of anything illegal. Just like people can claim that Apple has not been found guilty of anything illegal.

Also - the issue is collusion. Not Monopolies.

Regardless of what marketshare Amazon had. That doesn't entitle other companies to collude. If that is what happened. TBD

Plutonius
Jun 13, 2013, 04:50 PM
I can argue it wasn't a monopoly. I can also argue that Amazon has not been found guilty of anything illegal. Just like people can claim that Apple has not been found guilty of anything illegal.

Also - the issue is collusion. Not Monopolies.

Regardless of what marketshare Amazon had. That doesn't entitle other companies to collude. If that is what happened. TBD

In a trial, it's important to get all the background information to arrive at a correct decision. Amazon's actions at the time are 100% pertinent to the trial. If Amazon is found to have a monopoly on the ebook market during the period in question, it does affect what's considered collusion.

GadgetDon
Jun 13, 2013, 04:59 PM
I can argue it wasn't a monopoly. I can also argue that Amazon has not been found guilty of anything illegal. Just like people can claim that Apple has not been found guilty of anything illegal.

But Apple has been drug through the mud with the charges first being tried in the public and now the courtroom, while Amazon has been anointed by the State Department. If the DoJ had both taken action against Apple and the publishers and Amazon, I'd take these charges more seriously.

Also - the issue is collusion. Not Monopolies.

Regardless of what marketshare Amazon had. That doesn't entitle other companies to collude. If that is what happened. TBD

So if organized crime is collecting protection money and the police do nothing - the merchants just have to shrug and pay up?

samcraig
Jun 13, 2013, 05:00 PM
But Apple has been drug through the mud with the charges first being tried in the public and now the courtroom, while Amazon has been anointed by the State Department. If the DoJ had both taken action against Apple and the publishers and Amazon, I'd take these charges more seriously.



So if organized crime is collecting protection money and the police do nothing - the merchants just have to shrug and pay up?

No. But if they do something illegal - then they are still accountable.

Bubba Satori
Jun 13, 2013, 05:42 PM
This entire trial makes you wonder who at Amazon bribed whom at the DOJ.

http://foolishreporter.files.wordpress.com/2013/04/ihasconsprcythery.jpg

AppleMark
Jun 13, 2013, 05:49 PM
Applemark, samcraig is again arguing that Amazon NEVER had a monopoly on ebook distribution, that is a ludicrous and inaccurate statement, you really want to be part of the Amazon was never a monopoly crowd?

Really? Where did I make this statement?

Fact is this is not so much about monopolies, it is about creating a cartel [which is illegal] which engages in collusion to fix pricing. Price fixing, which Apple is accused of, which it duly denied and so is at the receiving end of legal action, with evidence being brought to that end.

It is Apple, not Amazon in the dock right now.

EDIT - Tigger11, I think I may have mis-read your post. I saw accusation, not perhaps a warning? However, my opinion on collusion still stands.

iGrip
Jun 13, 2013, 05:55 PM
I still don't understand what Apple allegedly did wrong. They set up shop a charged a higher price?

Not even close. But I suspect that you'd rather not know, and additionally, that any and all explanations that might be tendered would remain unaccepted.

But maybe I'm wrong and you really don't know. If so, here's (http://www.scribd.com/doc/145486131/U-S-v-Apple-Et-Al-Opening-Slides) a decent glimpse into what the DOJ is thinking in pursuing this action against Apple.

samcraig
Jun 13, 2013, 06:02 PM
Not even close. But I suspect that you'd rather not know, and additionally, that any and all explanations that might be tendered would remain unaccepted.

I like your sig quote. Also from that passage

"Given the situation that existed, what was best for us was to do this akido move and end up with the agency model. And we pulled it off.”

I wanted to add (I posted the same in another thread)

Apple could have entered the market. They just would not have made as much profit. That frustrated Apple. So they were on a mission to change the game to benefit themselves. Does anyone really think they wanted the publishers to make more money? Please. Side benefit. They wanted to make as much as they could off of ebooks and steal marketshare from Amazon. And if they stuck to their 70/30 split (which was only an internal "rule") they would not be profitable by selling books at 9.99. Nothing stopped Apple from doing a different split and/or pricing their books slightly higher to make up the difference. Many people in the ecosystem would have paid. They also could have offered extras with iBooks that weren't in the Kindle versions.

But they didn't. Did they?

I haven't seen anyone mention that before (I don't think). The 70/30 split. Apple could have done 80/20 or 90/10. Whatever. But that wasn't what they wanted. I'm not saying they were greedy. And obviously every company wants to make as much profit as possible. But let's not pretend there was NO way for Apple to make money...

GadgetDon
Jun 13, 2013, 06:43 PM
I like your sig quote. Also from that passage

"Given the situation that existed, what was best for us was to do this akido move and end up with the agency model. And we pulled it off.

I wanted to add (I posted the same in another thread)

Apple could have entered the market. They just would not have made as much profit. That frustrated Apple. So they were on a mission to change the game to benefit themselves. Does anyone really think they wanted the publishers to make more money? Please. Side benefit. They wanted to make as much as they could off of ebooks and steal marketshare from Amazon. And if they stuck to their 70/30 split (which was only an internal "rule") they would not be profitable by selling books at 9.99. Nothing stopped Apple from doing a different split and/or pricing their books slightly higher to make up the difference. Many people in the ecosystem would have paid. They also could have offered extras with iBooks that weren't in the Kindle versions.

But they didn't. Did they?

I haven't seen anyone mention that before (I don't think). The 70/30 split. Apple could have done 80/20 or 90/10. Whatever. But that wasn't what they wanted. I'm not saying they were greedy. And obviously every company wants to make as much profit as possible. But let's not pretend there was NO way for Apple to make money...

No, they couldn't. Here was the situation. Amazon was deeply discounting their ebooks, to the point where there was almost no difference between the wholesale price paid to the publishers and the amount Amazon was selling it for. They disliked this deep discounting because Amazon was setting an expectation "this is how much an ebook should cost" that was killing hardbound sales and also they believed would lead to Amazon saying "So now the real price is 9.99, which means the wholesale price we'll pay is 5.00, pay or else you're cut out of the only ebook market and we'll also stop selling your physical books"

So if Apple had come in to sell at 9.99, either the publishers would have made even less from sales in the iBookstore than in the Kindle store, or Apple would have made zero profit. Not less, ZERO. And it would have done nothing to change the expectation being set of what the price should be. Either Apple wouldn't have done the deal, or the publishers wouldn't have done the deal.

And the 30% margin is the number Apple uses across all their stores. Music, movies, TV shows, apps, magazines.

samcraig
Jun 13, 2013, 06:52 PM
So if Apple had come in to sell at 9.99, either the publishers would have made even less from sales in the iBookstore than in the Kindle store, or Apple would have made zero profit. Not less, ZERO. And it would have done nothing to change the expectation being set of what the price should be. Either Apple wouldn't have done the deal, or the publishers wouldn't have done the deal.

And the 30% margin is the number Apple uses across all their stores. Music, movies, TV shows, apps, magazines.

Apple could have charged more to make some profit. They chose not to. And again - that 30% is arbitrary. Regardless of whether they use it for other models - they could have changed it for books if they wanted to.

Look - I am not saying Apple IS guilty of colluding, wrong for entering the market, how they wanted to profit or that they didn't do what any normal business would/should do.

However none of that matters IF and I say IF they broke the law in doing so. So even if I think Apple should be commended, exonerated, or whatever - if they broke the law, they broke the law.

Some people have no problem when it's another company being put through the ringer fairly or unjustly and thing they should be forced to "pay" before even found guilty. Apple, to some, is justified though.

Justified or not - like I said - IF they broke the law - they broke the law. And that is why I support the hearing. Not to find Apple guilty. But to find out the truth. And you can't do that without a hearing. And even then - there are no guarantees the truth comes out.

GadgetDon
Jun 13, 2013, 06:59 PM
Apple could have charged more to make some profit. They chose not to. And again - that 30% is arbitrary. Regardless of whether they use it for other models - they could have changed it for books if they wanted to.

Look - I am not saying Apple IS guilty of colluding, wrong for entering the market, how they wanted to profit or that they didn't do what any normal business would/should do.

However none of that matters IF and I say IF they broke the law in doing so. So even if I think Apple should be commended, exonerated, or whatever - if they broke the law, they broke the law.

Some people have no problem when it's another company being put through the ringer fairly or unjustly and thing they should be forced to "pay" before even found guilty. Apple, to some, is justified though.

Justified or not - like I said - IF they broke the law - they broke the law. And that is why I support the hearing. Not to find Apple guilty. But to find out the truth. And you can't do that without a hearing. And even then - there are no guarantees the truth comes out.

The reason I think it all matters is the argument is that Apple and the publishers were artificially inflating prices. By looking at Amazon's pattern of behavior, I think it's at least highly arguable they were artificially deflating prices.

Remember, every publisher set their "retail" prices for the eBooks, which was above the $9.99 Amazon was discounting to. They were setting the prices separately. If there was a true market going on when Apple entered the market, there would be stores that did no discounts, stores that deeply discounted a few books but not all, stores that deeply discounted all of them.

But due to Amazon's anti-competitive behavior, there was a market of one, and they made sure that market remained a market of one by discounting to the wholesale price (and threatening publishers who objected with removing their physical books from Amazon as well as eBooks).

So I'll go back to say if the DoJ had both said "the most favored nation clause won't fly in this market, it's anti-competitive" and had taken Amazon to task to stop their anticompetitive behavior, that would have led to a more open and competitive market, where retailers can enter and compete. By only going after Apple, they aren't creating an open market, they're creating an even less free market. This seems less like fighting against abuse of market power and more like selective prosecution.

samcraig
Jun 13, 2013, 07:05 PM
The reason I think it all matters is the argument is that Apple and the publishers were artificially inflating prices. By looking at Amazon's pattern of behavior, I think it's at least highly arguable they were artificially deflating prices.

Remember, every publisher set their "retail" prices for the eBooks, which was above the $9.99 Amazon was discounting to. They were setting the prices separately. If there was a true market going on when Apple entered the market, there would be stores that did no discounts, stores that deeply discounted a few books but not all, stores that deeply discounted all of them.

But due to Amazon's anti-competitive behavior, there was a market of one, and they made sure that market remained a market of one by discounting to the wholesale price (and threatening publishers who objected with removing their physical books from Amazon as well as eBooks).

So I'll go back to say if the DoJ had both said "the most favored nation clause won't fly in this market, it's anti-competitive" and had taken Amazon to task to stop their anticompetitive behavior, that would have led to a more open and competitive market, where retailers can enter and compete. By only going after Apple, they aren't creating an open market, they're creating an even less free market.

Well 1) there were other eBook markets. Did they have a big portion of the lionshare - no - but then again - their eReaders weren't as popular. And yes - obviously that was in due to Amazon's pricing. But Kindles at the time were also more expensive. Amazon really did built a successful ebook business. Sony had an OK one - but just like Apple and the iPod - Amazon made eBooks "cool"

2) What are you expecting to happen to Apple even after this inquiry? And the eBook market. Not too much. The collateral "damage" so to speak is already done in the marketplace. It would be hard to undo. A reason why I also find Apple and Samsung/etcs lawsuits "silly" (personally) - while I respect patents - the damage has already been "done" if there was any damage (Apple isn't selling less but MORE phones than they have ever). Nothing will really ever be gained by a "win."

I do see where you're coming from. At the end of the day - I believe in the process. Regardless of outcome.

GadgetDon
Jun 13, 2013, 07:16 PM
2) What are you expecting to happen to Apple even after this inquiry? And the eBook market. Not too much. The collateral "damage" so to speak is already done in the marketplace. It would be hard to undo. A reason why I also find Apple and Samsung/etcs lawsuits "silly" (personally) - while I respect patents - the damage has already been "done" if there was any damage (Apple isn't selling less but MORE phones than they have ever). Nothing will really ever be gained by a "win."

I do see where you're coming from. At the end of the day - I believe in the process. Regardless of outcome.

What's going to happen? First, nothings going to stop Amazon from pricing everyone else out of the market, and at some point they're going to use that market price to either force reduced wholesale prices (and as the only viable market, the publishers will have no choice) or raise the prices (and any company will be very leery about re-entering this market).

I think it's likely the Most Favored Nation clause is gone. It really pretty much is already, as part of the publisher agreements they've cancelled that part of the contract. That doesn't bother me too much.

The big concern is that the DoJ is trying to make the argument that the Agency model is inherently anti-competitive. And that's something that scares me if they manage to pull it off. Because the wholesale model really doesn't work for digital goods.

The wholesale model is based on physical transfer of goods. I buy a whole bunch of your goods and store them in my warehouses, and because I'm buying a lot, I get a really good price. I sell out of my warehouse, and when empty, re-order. That's not how digital goods are sold. There is no "I am buying a bunch of them now", you create them and sell them and pay the owner of the IP a percentage of what you collected.

TMay
Jun 13, 2013, 07:38 PM
I like your sig quote. Also from that passage

"Given the situation that existed, what was best for us was to do this akido move and end up with the agency model. And we pulled it off.

I wanted to add (I posted the same in another thread)

Apple could have entered the market. They just would not have made as much profit. That frustrated Apple. So they were on a mission to change the game to benefit themselves. Does anyone really think they wanted the publishers to make more money? Please. Side benefit. They wanted to make as much as they could off of ebooks and steal marketshare from Amazon. And if they stuck to their 70/30 split (which was only an internal "rule") they would not be profitable by selling books at 9.99. Nothing stopped Apple from doing a different split and/or pricing their books slightly higher to make up the difference. Many people in the ecosystem would have paid. They also could have offered extras with iBooks that weren't in the Kindle versions.

But they didn't. Did they?

I haven't seen anyone mention that before (I don't think). The 70/30 split. Apple could have done 80/20 or 90/10. Whatever. But that wasn't what they wanted. I'm not saying they were greedy. And obviously every company wants to make as much profit as possible. But let's not pretend there was NO way for Apple to make money...

What part of Amazon selling Bestsellers below cost do you not understand? If anything, the counter argument should be: what was the benefit to Amazon of pricing below cost, and what damage would it do to the publishing industry.

samcraig
Jun 13, 2013, 07:40 PM
What's going to happen? First, nothings going to stop Amazon from pricing everyone else out of the market, and at some point they're going to use that market price to either force reduced wholesale prices (and as the only viable market, the publishers will have no choice) or raise the prices (and any company will be very leery about re-entering this market).

I think it's likely the Most Favored Nation clause is gone. It really pretty much is already, as part of the publisher agreements they've cancelled that part of the contract. That doesn't bother me too much.

The big concern is that the DoJ is trying to make the argument that the Agency model is inherently anti-competitive. And that's something that scares me if they manage to pull it off. Because the wholesale model really doesn't work for digital goods.

The wholesale model is based on physical transfer of goods. I buy a whole bunch of your goods and store them in my warehouses, and because I'm buying a lot, I get a really good price. I sell out of my warehouse, and when empty, re-order. That's not how digital goods are sold. There is no "I am buying a bunch of them now", you create them and sell them and pay the owner of the IP a percentage of what you collected.

Understood - but your theory is just that. (The first part of your post).

Is the DOJ really trying to end the Agency model? I've been to focused on reading up on the aspects of collusion and that evidence. I will admit ignorance to whether or not the agency model is being attacked with the intention of being killed off.

I never stated (that that you're accusing me) that he agency model is bad. My only "concern" is whether or not there was collusion. If there was illegal activity - even if it was for "good" - and would ultimately benefit - I am still in favor of due process.

TMay
Jun 13, 2013, 07:44 PM
Well 1) there were other eBook markets. Did they have a big portion of the lionshare - no - but then again - their eReaders weren't as popular. And yes - obviously that was in due to Amazon's pricing. But Kindles at the time were also more expensive. Amazon really did built a successful ebook business. Sony had an OK one - but just like Apple and the iPod - Amazon made eBooks "cool"

2) What are you expecting to happen to Apple even after this inquiry? And the eBook market. Not too much. The collateral "damage" so to speak is already done in the marketplace. It would be hard to undo. A reason why I also find Apple and Samsung/etcs lawsuits "silly" (personally) - while I respect patents - the damage has already been "done" if there was any damage (Apple isn't selling less but MORE phones than they have ever). Nothing will really ever be gained by a "win."

I do see where you're coming from. At the end of the day - I believe in the process. Regardless of outcome.

Apple hasn't stopped patenting innovations, and a win would send a message to the smartphone market that stealing IP has severe consequences. That's what all this fuss is about.

samcraig
Jun 13, 2013, 07:46 PM
Apple hasn't stopped patenting innovations, and a win would send a message to the smartphone market that stealing IP has severe consequences. That's what all this fuss is about.

Yes - years of litigation which so far hasn't awarded any money. One of the reasons HTC settled. They knew they couldn't afford the lawsuit. Their pockets aren't as deep.

TMay
Jun 13, 2013, 08:01 PM
Yes - years of litigation which so far hasn't awarded any money. One of the reasons HTC settled. They knew they couldn't afford the lawsuit. Their pockets aren't as deep.

Funny. When the Publishers pay, they are guilty. When HTC pays, it's because they can't afford to fight.

That thesis is unsound. Apple and Microsoft both hold many, many solid patents and have long experience with operating systems and UI. Google and Motorola are both losing big because they have little in the way of IP that isn't FRANDed. Motorola has had the single patent award against Apple in Germany rolled back. Google is fighting a rear guard action for Android while avoiding "official" involvement.

HTC, not so much success. They lost for multiple reasons, and they paid damages, and they licensed some IP from Apple under strict conditions of use. Simple.

GadgetDon
Jun 13, 2013, 08:11 PM
Apple hasn't stopped patenting innovations, and a win would send a message to the smartphone market that stealing IP has severe consequences. That's what all this fuss is about.

I think you've got your lawsuits confused. This isn't about patents, it's about alleged price fixing with iBooks.


Understood - but your theory is just that. (The first part of your post).

Is the DOJ really trying to end the Agency model? I've been to focused on reading up on the aspects of collusion and that evidence. I will admit ignorance to whether or not the agency model is being attacked with the intention of being killed off.

I never stated (that that you're accusing me) that he agency model is bad. My only "concern" is whether or not there was collusion. If there was illegal activity - even if it was for "good" - and would ultimately benefit - I am still in favor of due process.

As I read their arguments, it all seems to come down to the view that the agency model is inherently abusive and so the only "fix" will be to ban the agency model in books - and not a hard jump from that to say it's also abusive in music, video, apps, and magazines.

And you keep saying you're in favor of due process - but if the cop and the judge are turning a blind eye to one guy and instead only dealing with the competition for that guy, it looks less like due process and more like selective prosecution.

samcraig
Jun 13, 2013, 08:21 PM
Funny. When the Publishers pay, they are guilty. When HTC pays, it's because they can't afford to fight.

That thesis is unsound. Apple and Microsoft both hold many, many solid patents and have long experience with operating systems and UI. Google and Motorola are both losing big because they have little in the way of IP that isn't FRANDed. Motorola has had the single patent award against Apple in Germany rolled back. Google is fighting a rear guard action for Android while avoiding "official" involvement.

HTC, not so much success. They lost for multiple reasons, and they paid damages, and they licensed some IP from Apple under strict conditions of use. Simple.

I never said the publishers were guilty. I think it doesn't look good. And HTC settled most of the dispute out of court. Let's not compare Apples to Oranges though.

I still stand by the statement that HTC settled because it was more equitable for them to so do. Samsung will keep fighting because they believe they are right (whether or not we believe they are) and because they can afford to take it all the way.

I think you've got your lawsuits confused. This isn't about patents, it's about alleged price fixing with iBooks.

To be fair - I brought up the patent lawsuit when I offhandedly said "A reason why I also find Apple and Samsung/etcs lawsuits "silly" (personally) - while I respect patents - the damage has already been "done" if there was any damage (Apple isn't selling less but MORE phones than they have ever). Nothing will really ever be gained by a "win.""

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I think you've got your lawsuits confused. This isn't about patents, it's about alleged price fixing with iBooks.




As I read their arguments, it all seems to come down to the view that the agency model is inherently abusive and so the only "fix" will be to ban the agency model in books - and not a hard jump from that to say it's also abusive in music, video, apps, and magazines.

And you keep saying you're in favor of due process - but if the cop and the judge are turning a blind eye to one guy and instead only dealing with the competition for that guy, it looks less like due process and more like selective prosecution.

Devil's advocate. Do two wrongs make a right? If I speed and you speed - but you get pulled over - does that make you any less guilty?

Do I think it's "fair" - I don't know. I don't have all the facts. And we can spend forever conjecturing what Amazon did/does/plans to do/etc and whether or not this was a "witch hunt" or whatnot.

I'm simply (or trying to) just discuss the issue of collusion - nothing else.

TMay
Jun 13, 2013, 08:22 PM
I think you've got your lawsuits confused. This isn't about patents, it's about alleged price fixing with iBooks.




As I read their arguments, it all seems to come down to the view that the agency model is inherently abusive and so the only "fix" will be to ban the agency model in books - and not a hard jump from that to say it's also abusive in music, video, apps, and magazines.

And you keep saying you're in favor of due process - but if the cop and the judge are turning a blind eye to one guy and instead only dealing with the competition for that guy, it looks less like due process and more like selective prosecution.

Read samcraig #31 above for his take on Apple's Patent suit(s) which was what I was responding to.

samcraig
Jun 13, 2013, 08:29 PM
Read samcraig #31 above for his take on Apple's Patent suit(s) which was what I was responding to.

I defended you :)

Just FYI - I'm not "naive" - clearly setting precedent is important. But ultimate - for Samsung (as an example) it's not really going to stop them from taking their chances. It's almost impossible these days to produce any product and not step on someone's patents. Purposely or not. And a patent is only really valid if tested. As we've seen in these cases. It's not just enough to have a patent - it has to be analyzed and debated in court to determine if it can hold up and offending parties be liable.

So my comment was a little bit of hyperbole. And I recognize that.

TMay
Jun 13, 2013, 08:45 PM
I defended you :)

Just FYI - I'm not "naive" - clearly setting precedent is important. But ultimate - for Samsung (as an example) it's not really going to stop them from taking their chances. It's almost impossible these days to produce any product and not step on someone's patents. Purposely or not. And a patent is only really valid if tested. As we've seen in these cases. It's not just enough to have a patent - it has to be analyzed and debated in court to determine if it can hold up and offending parties be liable.

So my comment was a little bit of hyperbole. And I recognize that.

Yes! and thank you.

The problem the Apple sees is that Samsung appears not to have even slowed down its infringement to that which is being adjudicated; Samsung is sending new products in to the U.S. that are very likely to also infringe. At some point, Congress is going to get tired of hearing from MS, Apple, et al, and do something about allowing fast tracks and injunctions. Then it will be zero tolerance for IP abusers.

Google (Motorola) is still attempting to gain injunctions for FRANDed IP; the ITC is pretty much done with any of that here in the U.S., as are most IP jurisdictions worldwide.

So much for "Don't Be Evil", but for the $ they paid Motorola, a white elephant, what else can they do?

samcraig
Jun 13, 2013, 08:53 PM
Yes! and thank you.

The problem the Apple sees is that Samsung appears not to have even slowed down its infringement to that which is being adjudicated; Samsung is sending new products in to the U.S. that are very likely to also infringe. At some point, Congress is going to get tired of hearing from MS, Apple, et al, and do something about allowing fast tracks and injunctions. Then it will be zero tolerance for IP abusers.

Google (Motorola) is still attempting to gain injunctions for FRANDed IP; the ITC is pretty much done with any of that here in the U.S., as are most IP jurisdictions worldwide.

So much for "Don't Be Evil", but for the $ they paid Motorola, a white elephant, what else can they do?

Well - color me rose colored - but I don't think Google's acquisition was JUST about buying Motorola patents. Although I would say that was the majority. I also do think Google wants to create its own hardware. And they could either start from 'scratch' - or buy a company that was already making phones. For that reason - it was a "smart" acquisition for both levels of desire.

FakeWozniak
Jun 13, 2013, 10:44 PM
So if Apple approached the 5 big publishers of Books and suggests they change to an agency model, it's collusion. What about when they approached the 5 big publishers of Music and suggested they change to an agency model? Didn't the exact same thing happen back in the iPod days???

Tigger11
Jun 13, 2013, 11:53 PM
Is the DOJ really trying to end the Agency model? I've been to focused on reading up on the aspects of collusion and that evidence. I will admit ignorance to whether or not the agency model is being attacked with the intention of being killed off.


Yes the DOJ is ending the agency model. Read the settlement agreements with all the publishers, they allow Amazon to sell books at whatever price they want with regards to ebooks, which is bad for the publishers, the creators, the economy and the eventually all of us.
-Tig

jimboutilier
Jun 14, 2013, 08:56 AM
All I know is that e-book pricing from the accused publishers all took a significant jump as part of Apple getting into their market. Higher revenue was the carrot Apple dangled in front of the publishers to get into the market at the expense of consumers. They all worked together to make it happen.

I'd call it collusion. And I'd call it illegal. But thats up to the courts. I'd call it bad for consumers and thats up to me. As a result I never have and never will by an iBook from Apple thats available anywhere else.

nevir
Jun 14, 2013, 09:28 AM
I still don't understand what Apple allegedly did wrong. They set up shop a charged a higher price?

They set up a shop that charged higher prices ...and forced every other shop to charge identical prices. No sales allowed, exact same cut, etc.

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Yes the DOJ is ending the agency model. Read the settlement agreements with all the publishers, they allow Amazon to sell books at whatever price they want with regards to ebooks, which is bad for the publishers, the creators, the economy and the eventually all of us.
-Tig

Not sure I agree. Without breaking the agency model, it would be extremely unlikely that Apple lowers the 30% cut; and every other distributor is locked into that same split.

Zero competition on price and margins allowed under the agency model.

2bikes
Jun 14, 2013, 09:38 AM
Yes the DOJ is ending the agency model. Read the settlement agreements with all the publishers, they allow Amazon to sell books at whatever price they want with regards to ebooks, which is bad for the publishers, the creators, the economy and the eventually all of us.
-Tig

Wouldn`t this push authors towards publishing their own books with software such as ibooks author and others? Is this option not profitable for the authors?

TMay
Jun 14, 2013, 09:58 AM
Well - color me rose colored - but I don't think Google's acquisition was JUST about buying Motorola patents. Although I would say that was the majority. I also do think Google wants to create its own hardware. And they could either start from 'scratch' - or buy a company that was already making phones. For that reason - it was a "smart" acquisition for both levels of desire.

Not smart as much as forced. Motorola CEO and financial backer Carl Icahn threatening to go after Android OEM's for IP. That would have wreaked havoc at the time.

That's what got Google's intention. The IP is basically FRAND so not worth all that much in negotiating terms with Apple, Nokia, Microsoft, et al, and Motorola as a hardware company hasn't found any stickiness to its products, certainly not a Samsung. Some steep tax writeoffs benefit Google, but that isn't generally why corporations buy other corporations in the tech community.

Seems to me that this might been part of the reason that Andy Reuben was transferred out of the Android group, based on stories and rumors at the time he was transferred.

samcraig
Jun 14, 2013, 11:09 AM
Not smart as much as forced. Motorola CEO and financial backer Carl Icahn threatening to go after Android OEM's for IP. That would have wreaked havoc at the time.

That's what got Google's attention. The IP is basically FRAND so not worth all that much in negotiating terms with Apple, Nokia, Microsoft, et al, and Motorola as a hardware company hasn't found any stickiness to its products, certainly not a Samsung. Some steep tax writeoffs benefit Google, but that isn't generally why corporations buy other corporations in the tech community.

Seems to me that this might been part of the reason that Andy Reuben was transferred out of the Android group, based on stories and rumors at the time he was transferred.

The amount of patents Motorola has that are not FRAND are astronomical. Google now has a huge arsenal for decades on things that have never been implemented yet.

TMay
Jun 14, 2013, 11:33 AM
The amount of patents Motorola has that are not FRAND are astronomical. Google now has a huge arsenal for decades on things that have never been implemented yet.

They haven't been able to use it to negotiate was the point because most of it is FRAND, or older cell IP.

samcraig
Jun 14, 2013, 01:18 PM
They haven't been able to use it to negotiate was the point because most of it is FRAND, or older cell IP.

I'm not following you then. My point is this. Motorola has thousands of patents related to cell phones and cell technologies. Only a FRACTION of those are Frand. Now if you're saying the "important" ones to the recent case(s) aren't particularly valuable - I would agree based on the rulings.

If you're suggesting that most of Motorola's patents aren't of value or "old" - then you're 100% wrong.

nevir
Jun 14, 2013, 01:29 PM
Wouldn`t this push authors towards publishing their own books with software such as ibooks author and others? Is this option not profitable for the authors?

Some authors have done that pretty successfully on Amazon's platform; but many tend to gravitate to larger publishers as the author will get some money up front, and advertising is covered.

TMay
Jun 14, 2013, 01:33 PM
I'm not following you then. My point is this. Motorola has thousands of patents related to cell phones and cell technologies. Only a FRACTION of those are Frand. Now if you're saying the "important" ones to the recent case(s) aren't particularly valuable - I would agree based on the rulings.

If you're suggesting that most of Motorola's patents aren't of value or "old" - then you're 100% wrong.

Why else would Google have bought them if not for defensive reasons in patent spats? That part of the purchase has been a failure. The patents have some value within Motorola, but Samsung isn't going to give Motorola any space to survive, with or without Nexus branding. For that matter, none of the Android OEM's are going to be allowed room in the market without bloodshed.

Samsung's margins are getting hammered by overproduction at this point in time, and still marketshare is all that matters.

There is quite a bit of analysis on the web that is negative on the benefit to Google of the Motorola buy, and little positive.

I welcome any of that which you provide which supports Motorola a as good "buy", but I expect you will find plenty that refutes that.

----------

Some authors have done that pretty successfully on Amazon's platform; but many tend to gravitate to larger publishers as the author will get some money up front, and advertising is covered.

The iBook Author platform is similar. The Agency Model, even the 70-30 split is ideal for self published Authors, on any platform.

lolkthxbai
Jun 14, 2013, 02:12 PM
[QUOTE=nevir;17424988]They set up a shop that charged higher prices ...and forced every other shop to charge identical prices. No sales allowed, exact same cut, etc.[COLOR="#808080"]

So they're in trouble for trying to level the playing field?

Tigger11
Jun 14, 2013, 03:33 PM
Wouldn`t this push authors towards publishing their own books with software such as ibooks author and others? Is this option not profitable for the authors?

Self publishing is an option, but the funny thing is that self publishing is using the Agency model (at least now). You publish the book (use the tools, generate the electronic book for the 3+ systems on 3 different pieces of software, etc) you set the price then Apple or Amazon or B&N take 30% and you get 70%, ie the same thing that is not going to happen with the books from the big publishers. Amazon will likely return to selling ebooks at much lower then cost and forcing publishers to continue to lower their ebook prices while threatening to remove the print books from their store if they don't meet the new expected prices.

----------



Zero competition on price and margins allowed under the agency model.

Over the last two years the average price of a ebook has gone down, and the over the last two years the number of sources of ebooks has gone up by a huge margin. All that under the Agency model, without the agency model we had one supplier of ebooks and B&N trying to be a second, currently we have the big 3 (Amazon, B&N and Apple) plus lots and lots of little suppliers, that wouldnt have happened under the Amazon owns all the books model we had a few years back.

GadgetDon
Jun 14, 2013, 03:54 PM
Not sure I agree. Without breaking the agency model, it would be extremely unlikely that Apple lowers the 30% cut; and every other distributor is locked into that same split.

Zero competition on price and margins allowed under the agency model.

The argument is that the "most favored nation" clause required the publishers to switch the other retailers (well, switch Amazon - everyone else has been pretty happy with the agency model) to agency model. With the MFN clause struck down, Apple's retention of the agency model does nothing to force anyone else into it.

I still say the agency model most accurately fits digital goods (it's not like Amazon has to "stock up" on eBooks, taking a risk of overstocking or understocking), but it's pretty clear that Amazon will be allowed to use the "wholesale" model.

samcraig
Jun 14, 2013, 05:11 PM
Why else would Google have bought them if not for defensive reasons in patent spats? That part of the purchase has been a failure. The patents have some value within Motorola, but Samsung isn't going to give Motorola any space to survive, with or without Nexus branding. For that matter, none of the Android OEM's are going to be allowed room in the market without bloodshed.

Samsung's margins are getting hammered by overproduction at this point in time, and still marketshare is all that matters.

There is quite a bit of analysis on the web that is negative on the benefit to Google of the Motorola buy, and little positive.

I welcome any of that which you provide which supports Motorola a as good "buy", but I expect you will find plenty that refutes that.

----------



The iBook Author platform is similar. The Agency Model, even the 70-30 split is ideal for self published Authors, on any platform.

I never said whether or not it was a good buy. I merely stated that Motorola has thousands of patents relating to cell technology. I also never commented as to the timing of the purchase.

Having worked in the industry for several years back in the 90s - let me assure you - I'm not conjecturing. Motorola has THOUSANDS of patents. Only a handful were useful in the legal battles so far. That doesn't make the other patents not useful in the future - whether Google implements a fraction of them in future devices or just has them in their back pocket.

GadgetDon
Jun 14, 2013, 05:21 PM
I never said whether or not it was a good buy. I merely stated that Motorola has thousands of patents relating to cell technology. I also never commented as to the timing of the purchase.

Having worked in the industry for several years back in the 90s - let me assure you - I'm not conjecturing. Motorola has THOUSANDS of patents. Only a handful were useful in the legal battles so far. That doesn't make the other patents not useful in the future - whether Google implements a fraction of them in future devices or just has them in their back pocket.

The question I'd ask is how many of them are still relevant to current cell technology (as opposed to, say, better ways of switching between the first gen of cell towers) and particularly how many relate to smartphone design (that is, data processing, not voice).

Thousands of patents covering the industry as it stood in the 90s aren't going to be that relevant moving forward (unless they were core ones which were already relevant now and would have been used in the trials).

samcraig
Jun 14, 2013, 05:58 PM
The question I'd ask is how many of them are still relevant to current cell technology (as opposed to, say, better ways of switching between the first gen of cell towers) and particularly how many relate to smartphone design (that is, data processing, not voice).

Thousands of patents covering the industry as it stood in the 90s aren't going to be that relevant moving forward (unless they were core ones which were already relevant now and would have been used in the trials).

I don't know the specific breakdown - but I was more referring to features, UI elements, etc a phone could have that Motorola has patents for.

GadgetDon
Jun 14, 2013, 06:02 PM
I don't know the specific breakdown - but I was more referring to features, UI elements, etc a phone could have that Motorola has patents for.

But that's my point - assuming that Google will handle its patents in a reasonable way (i.e., no "I have this old patent that at one point sends a message from one computer to another - therefore anyone who does anything sending a message must pay us or else"), I wonder how many are recent enough to be relevant that they could provide that sort of advantage.

nevir
Jun 14, 2013, 06:32 PM
The argument is that the "most favored nation" clause required the publishers to switch the other retailers (well, switch Amazon - everyone else has been pretty happy with the agency model) to agency model. With the MFN clause struck down, Apple's retention of the agency model does nothing to force anyone else into it.

I still say the agency model most accurately fits digital goods (it's not like Amazon has to "stock up" on eBooks, taking a risk of overstocking or understocking), but it's pretty clear that Amazon will be allowed to use the "wholesale" model.

Yeah, true, MFN was really the part of that I took issue with

GadgetDon
Jun 14, 2013, 09:56 PM
Yeah, true, MFN was really the part of that I took issue with

The easy part of the case is the MFN - to the point where, if the DoJ was only saying "Drop the MFN clause and pay a token fine", there's no way that Apple wouldn't have settled because it's one the DoJ could win on.

Solomani
Jun 15, 2013, 07:00 AM
Well yes. Apple will always need at least one exec who sports a Romulan haircut.

TMay
Jun 15, 2013, 12:19 PM
The easy part of the case is the MFN - to the point where, if the DoJ was only saying "Drop the MFN clause and pay a token fine", there's no way that Apple wouldn't have settled because it's one the DoJ could win on.

Nothing illegal at all about a MFN clause in a distributor's contract for a product, or even MSRP that serves essentially the same purpose but driven by the manufacturer/producer. Both are to level the sales playing field. I don't think that Apple would have given in on that either.

MFM and the Agency Model are sideshows to a collusion trial though the DOJ prefers removal of those plus financial penalties as the remediation.

Bubba Satori
Jun 16, 2013, 07:59 AM
Well yes. Apple will always need at least one exec who sports a Romulan haircut.

Best post of the thread.