Canada, publishers reach ebooks competition settlement

Feb 07, 2014
A woman tries the eBook reader app on an Apple iPad at the Leipzig Book Fair in eastern Germany on March 15, 2012

Four major ebook publishers reached a settlement Friday with Canadian authorities to end practices which officials said choked off competition and kept prices high.

The Bureau of Competition said in a statement that the publishers "have agreed to remove or amend clauses in their distribution agreements with individual ebook retailers that the Bureau believes have the effect of restricting retail price , which will allow retailers to offer discounts on ."

As a result, the deal "is expected to lower the price of ebooks in Canada," the statement said.

The settlement follows an 18-month investigation into the ebook industry in Canada and was signed by Hachette Book Group, HarperCollins, Macmillan and Simon & Schuster.

The consent was registered with Canada's Competition Tribunal.

"This agreement should benefit Canadian consumers by lowering the price of ebooks in Canada," said Competition Commissioner John Pecman.

"Businesses operating in the digital economy must realize that anti-competitive activity will not be tolerated, whether it occurs in the physical world or the digital one."

Officials said similar settlements reached in the United States in 2012 and 2013 resulted in lower for ebooks in the US market, including discounts of 20 percent or more on top-selling titles.

In the United States, major publishers reached an agreement to settle a probe into illegal collusion with Apple, but the maker of iPads went to trial and lost. Apple is facing court supervision in the case.

Explore further: E-books: US tells Apple to cut publishing ties

add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

Penguin joins settlement in US e-books lawsuit

Dec 18, 2012

Penguin Group has agreed to join three other publishers in a settlement of a US government lawsuit alleging an e-book price-fixing conspiracy with Apple, officials said Tuesday.

US class-action ebook price-fixing suit can proceed

May 15, 2012

A judge Tuesday allowed a class-action case to proceed against Apple and six publishing houses alleging a price-fixing scheme for electronic books, citing "ample" indications of a conspiracy.

E-books: US tells Apple to cut publishing ties

Aug 02, 2013

The US Department of Justice said Friday that tech giant Apple must cut ties with the five publishers with which it was found guilty of running an e-book price-fixing scheme.

Apple, e-book publishers, EU find competition deal

Dec 13, 2012

(AP)—The European Union's competition watchdog has accepted proposals by four publishers and Apple to end agreements that set retail prices for e-books—a practice the EU feared violated competition rules.

Recommended for you

Microsoft sues Samsung alleging contract breach

7 hours ago

Microsoft on Friday sued Samsung in federal court claiming the South Korean giant had breached a contract over cross-license technology used in the fiercely competitive smartphone market.

Apple closes acquisition of Beats music

14 hours ago

Apple said Friday it closed its $3 billion deal for Beats, the high-end audio equipment and streaming music service, a tie-up that could allow the iPhone maker to reach new audiences.

User comments : 0