Apple Could Go to Trial in May 2014 for eBooks Damages
August 15, 2013 9:43 AM
At that time, Cote will decide if Apple has to pay as much as hundreds of millions of dollars in response to the recent ebooks ruling
Apple may have to go to trial (again) concerning the eBooks conspiracy, but this time, it's to discuss damages.
According to a new report by
, U.S. District Judge Denise Cote scheduled a trial for damages in May 2014. At that time, Cote will decide if Apple has to pay as much as hundreds of millions of dollars in response to the recent eBooks ruling.
Until then, Apple and the government have to complete interviews with experts by December 13. They must also submit court papers on whether to certify a class of plaintiffs.
Earlier this month, the U.S. Department of Justice and 33 U.S. states and territories have proposed that
Apple be banned
from entering anti-competitive e-book distribution contracts for five years; end its business models with the five publishers it conspired with; use an outside monitor to make sure that its antitrust policies are effective, and allow retailers like Amazon and Barnes & Noble to provide links to their options for two years.
However, the five book publishers that took part in an agency price model with Apple (and were targeted in the DOJ investigation as well) said that
the new solutions punish the publishers
more than they do Apple.
More specifically, they said that the restrictions on Apple go against the previous settlements between the publishers and the DOJ, where the publishers have already paid $166 million to benefit consumers.
These solutions still have to be approved by Cote.
This all started in April 2012, when the
U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) sued Apple and the five book publishers
for using an agency pricing model in their agreements. This means that publishers were allowed to set the price of a book and Apple would take a 30 percent cut. In addition, the publishers could not let rivals sell the same book at a lower price.
Last month, Apple -- which was the only company to go to trial regarding eBooks while the book publishers had already settled with the DOJ -- was found guilty of conspiring to raise eBook prices. U.S. District Judge Denise Cote handed down the ruling, saying that consumers and competitors were negatively affected by the arrangement Apple had with the book publishers.
"Well, there may be a reason why they call them 'Mac' trucks! Windows machines will not be trucks." -- Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer
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