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Technology / Networks

Apple faces trial in US over e-books pricing

The US District Court for the Southern District of New York has prepared to begin a trial over allegations by the Department of Justice (DOJ) that Apple conspired with publishers to hike e-book prices.

Last year, the US Department of Justice (DOJ) and 15 US states sued Apple and other major book publishers for alleged price-fixing of electronic books.

David Balto, a former policy director for the US Federal Trade Commission, was quoted by Reuters as saying that: "This case will effectively set the rules for Internet commerce."

Reuters reported that the US government is not seeking damages but instead an order blocking Apple from engaging in similar practice.

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The news agency said if Apple is found liable, it could still face damages in a separate trial by the state attorneys general and consumers pursuing class actions.

Apple is alone fighting in the trial as all five publishers involved in the lawsuit, Hachette Book, HarperCollins Publishers, Simon & Schuster, Macmillan Publishers, and Penguin Group, have settled with the DOJ.

Last year, Apple and four other European publishers settled their EU e-book anti trust case to avoid possible fines, by agreeing to allow online retailers like Amazon sell e-books at a discount for two years.

This article is from the CBROnline archive: some formatting and images may not be present.

CBR Staff Writer

CBR Online legacy content.