Most Kindle Nation Daily readers are aware that the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) has filed a major antitrust lawsuit against Apple and the five original “agency model” publishers charging them with a massive price-fixing conspiracy in violation of federal law. But you may not be aware that the DOJ Antitrust Division wants to hear from members of the public during a 60-day comment period on the lawsuit.
If you believe that you have been affected my agency-model price-fixing and would like to share your concerns with the Department of Justice and the parties in this lawsuit before the proposed Final Judgment takes effect, you should put your concerns in writing and submit them no later than June 22, 2012.
Under the provisions of a notice published in the Federal Register on April 24, 2012, written comments should be submitted to:
John Read, Chief
Litigation III Section
U.S. Department of Justice
450 5th Street, NW, Suite 4000 Washington, DC 20530
“All comments received during this period will be considered by the United States Department of Justice, which remains free to withdraw its consent to the proposed Final Judgment at any time prior to the Court’s entry of judgment. The comments and the responses of the United States will be filed with the Court and published in the Federal Register,” states the notice.
Why not just leave all this up to the government and the lawyers for it and the defendants?
Well, suffice it to say that individuals and groups associated with the defendants are sounding off through the comment process, and they are making very strong claims to the general effect that DOJ’s efforts to protect consumers against ebook price-fixing are misguided, because the DOJ should instead be protecting the interests and the distribution infrastructure of the same publishers who colluded with Apple to raise ebook prices by 30 to 100 percent back in 2010.
For all the public documents as well as our coverage of the lawsuit, please check out the Federal Register notice and our April 19, 2012 post, “The Gang That Couldn’t Shoot Straight: How Apple and 5 Big Publishers Almost Got Away with a Massive Price-Fixing Conspiracy to Try to Turn Back the Kindle Revolution, and What It Will Mean for Readers, Authors, and Publishers Going Forward.”
We’ll share our Kindle Nation Daily public comment on the case, as well as those of some industry players, in the near future.