Pic of the day: Paul Cezanne; Tulips and Apples
The real truth of the matter is, as you and I know, that a financial element in the larger centers has owned the Government ever since the days of Andrew Jackson.
Franklin D. Roosevelt
E-books are great, love the things, makes it much easier to read while traveling. A lot less weight in books in my bag now that I use a kindle. But I had also noticed a while back (I think I wrote about it once before) that prices had gone up sharply, around about Christmas. Wrote back then that it was by and large due to the fact that there was a deal in place between major publishers to artificially raise prices.
Seems I was right. The Justice department plans on suing 5 major publishers and Apple on colluding to raise prices. The collusion happens when five publishers agreed to a deal with Apple that said that apple would take 30% of the price of a book, and that they could charge what they wanted provided they did not charge less for the book elsewhere. This caused an overnight inflation in e-book prices from the major publishing houses in question, because it forced Apples main competition in the e-readers market, Amazon, to alter how they did business because Apple colluded to artificially raise prices.
The companies Apple colluded with are; Simon and Schuster, Macmillan, Hachette, Penguin, and HarperCollins.
I have heard that there are some that think that this is not collusion. How it could not be is beyond me. This is an agreement between businesses to alter prices in a way that the free market could not duplicate. Book prices being forced to move in a manner that the free market does not dictate, but that a number of businesses did, is the textbook definition of collusion. It keeps those who profited from the non-inflated prices of the books from offering books at the same prices as they had been, thus draining their market base, defrauding them in a manner that is conspiratorial in nature, meant specifically to erode Amazon’s business if it did not alter it’s business model.
And that is, no matter how you slice it, wrong. If Apple and the rest had not made the agreement with the stipulation that they would take thirty percent AND not allow the publishers in question to charge less when not selling through apple, it would not be collusion. These businesses however thought of their own wallets before basic business ethics, and now they have to scramble to fix what could be a major marketing problem for all of them.
There are other publishers after all. Other places besides Apple to buy books. Who needs Apple after all? Who wants to read a book at a price that was artificially raised by the publisher, and knows that for a fact? No one with any damn brains in their head, tell ya that.
Plus, other e-book readers are less expensive that any of that damned overpriced crap that Apple sells that you could read it on.
It is regrettable that regardless of what happens here, Apple and the rest of the companies who did this to us won’t suffer for overcharging us. They won’t suffer because they can absorb whatever monetary punishment that the Justice department throws at them, should it get to that.
That’s it from here, America. G’night.