Apple Responds To DOJ Price-Fixing Lawsuit
Apple has finally released their own statement concerning the recent lawsuit filed by the Department of Justice. The lawsuit accuses Apple of colluding with five publishers to raise the price of e-books and stifle competition from Amazon. Late yesterday, Apple released a statement in which they denied the allegations and insisted that the deals they made actually preserved competition, rather than hampering it.
Here’s the statement, which was given to AllThingsD by Apple spokesman Tom Neumayr:
The DOJ’s accusation of collusion against Apple is simply not true. The launch of the iBookstore in 2010 fostered innovation and competition, breaking Amazon’s monopolistic grip on the publishing industry. Since then customers have benefited from eBooks that are more interactive and engaging. Just as we’ve allowed developers to set prices on the App Store, publishers set prices on the iBookstore.
Of the five publishers that were also sued by the DOJ, three have already settled out of court. Shortly after the suit was filed, Hachette, HarperCollins, and Simon & Schuster agreed to settle for undisclosed terms. The other two publishers, Macmillan and Penguin, have vowed to fight the suit in court alongside Apple. The CEOs of Macmillan and Penguin issued statements not long after the suit was filed denying any wrongdoing and insisting that the deals they made with Apple actually fostered competition by breaking Amazon’s stranglehold on the e-book market.
Amazon, as you might expect, is immensely pleased with this development. They called the DOJ’s suit and the deals with three of the five publishers “a big win for Kindle owners.”