Amazon and five publishing houses sued for agreement on e-book prices

09/02/2021

The class action was filed on January 14 on behalf of consumers in several states against the giant Amazon and targets five publishers as “co-conspirators”.

The case concerns commercial practices between the different players who would use the most-favored nation clause to keep e-book prices artificially high, thereby limiting competitive prices, so that consumers would be led to pay more for e-books purchased from Amazon’s competitors.

This action adds to an investigation by the Connecticut Attorney General, who said the state is actively investigating Amazon’s anti-competitive practices in the distribution of e-books.

The price of e-books has indeed increased sharply since 2015, when Amazon entered into negotiations with these publishing houses. Previously, Apple was the main contact for the publishers, before being sued in 2011 and then sentenced to repayment of 450,000 million dollars for agreement on prices of digital books with these same publishers.

The complaint states that in the United States, Amazon has 90% of the e-book market and 50% of paper books.

By the IP/IT team of UGGC Lawyers

Source: NY Times

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