Authors Guild and Booksellers Association challenge Apple e-book ruling | iLounge News

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Authors Guild and Booksellers Association challenge Apple e-book ruling

A group representing authors and booksellers has filed a motion asking the Supreme Court to overturn the decision against Apple in the e-book price fixing conspiracy, according to a new report by The Bookseller. Following the court’s judgement earlier this year that Apple violated anti-trust laws by conspiring to raise and fix e-book prices at higher levels than those previously charged by Amazon, the group, which includes the Authors Guild, Authors United, the American Booksellers Association, and Barnes & Noble, has filed an amicus brief in the U.S. asserting that the government’s focus on Apple’s “allegedly anti-competitive activities” was “misplaced.”

The group argues that Apple’s conduct has actually enhanced competition by increasing the number of e-books available and the number of companies distributing them, which has in turn improved technology in the e-book market and increased access to e-books. The brief also cites the increase in competition, noting that Amazon’s almost-monopolistic market share has fallen from 90 percent in 2010 to around 60 percent two years after Apple entered the market, and suggests that the Department of Justice should be taking a closer look at Amazon’s anticompetitive behavior in the e-book marketplace. Mary Rasenberger, executive director of the Authors Guild in New York, said: “We fundamentally question the wisdom of the Second Circuit’s use of antitrust law to punish a business arrangement that demonstrably increased competition in the e-book marketplace. Freedom and diversity of expression inevitably wither in a book market heavily controlled by a single player.”

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