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Apple said Amazon is its competitor, so the name cannot be mentioned in potential iBooks submissions

Apple recently refused to carry an ebook in its popular iBooks store because it mentioned a huge ebooks competitor -- Amazon. 
Apple rejected a book called "How To Think Sideways Lesson 6: How to Discover (Or Create) Your Story's Market" by Holly Lisle. Lisle is an author that typically creates online writing guides.
Lisle submitted her book to Apple's iBooks store, and received a rejection letter stating that she wasn't allowed to have live links to Amazon inside. She then removed the links and resubmitted the book, only to receive yet another rejection letter. The reason? She wasn't allowed to mention Amazon at all in the book because it is an Apple competitor. 
"This is not professional behavior from a professional market," said Lisle. "And cold moment of truth here -- you cannot write a writing course that includes information on publishing and self-publishing and NOT mention Amazon. It's the place where your writers are going to make about 90 percent of their money."
Apple is currently in the middle of an ebooks-related battle that concerns Amazon. In April of this year, the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) sued Apple and five book publishers over anti-competitive practices concerning ebook sales. More specifically, the book publishers were accused of partaking in an agency sales model with Apple in an effort to stifle Amazon's success.
Some, however, are in favor of Apple's added competition against Amazon. Earlier this month, Sen. Charles Schumer (D-NY) wrote a memo to the U.S. Department of Justice via The Wall Street Journal in an effort to put a stop to the eBooks lawsuit filed against Apple and two other book publishers.

According to Schumer, the lawsuit will destroy the publishing industry because Amazon needs the competition in order to have better offerings (regarding book selection and price) for consumers. 

Source: Boing Boing

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This will look great when presented to the judge :P
By Fritzr on 7/30/2012 10:55:54 PM , Rating: 5
I am sure the opposition's lawyers will be looking at the responses sent to Holly Lisle to see if they should be presented when Apple goes to trial regarding their efforts to control the publishing industry.

Apple would never consider anti-competitive behavior. Apple senior management believes too strongly in doing the correct thing :P

By bupkus on 7/31/2012 12:45:33 AM , Rating: 5
No one is contesting that.
Read it again.

By Samus on 7/31/2012 4:58:32 AM , Rating: 5
Yeah, Apple is basically admitting they are anti-competitive!

By othercents on 7/31/2012 8:37:10 AM , Rating: 2
I just wondering... Are there people who don't know who Amazon is? Does mentioning Amazon in a book make people jump at this new online distributor that they immediately start replacing their Apple products with ones sold on Amazon? Get real Apple.

By Cheesew1z69 on 7/31/2012 12:48:06 PM , Rating: 2
7 MILLION profit? Um...I think you are mistaken...

By Silver2k7 on 7/31/2012 1:13:45 PM , Rating: 2
"7 MILLION profit? Um...I think you are mistaken..."

I believe that Amazon invested heavily into Kindle.. wich is why profit might look very low.

By Cheesew1z69 on 7/31/2012 1:30:04 PM , Rating: 2
I still think 7 million is a 100+ million off the mark. According to an article I just read a few min ago, they made 177 million in ONE quarter. There is NO WAY that they only made 7 million profit for the YEAR...

By Odysseus145 on 7/31/2012 12:48:53 PM , Rating: 2
Where are you getting those numbers? Amazon has made over $4 billion in digital sales so far this year.

By Cheesew1z69 on 7/31/2012 12:56:07 PM , Rating: 4
That's King iDouche for you, lying to prop up his precious Apple to make them look better.

By Motoman on 7/31/2012 10:18:33 AM , Rating: 2
That's exactly what Fritzr is saying - that Apple is controlling the industry and that they're going to be taken to court over it.

Read it again.

By mtelesha on 7/31/2012 7:13:35 AM , Rating: 2
I will say it's wrong. How is this NOT the equal to ebook book burning???

This is 100% anti-competitive behavior! Next thing you know if someone talk about Google or the #1 selling Android phone and that is not sold also? Apple is wrong and I guess Fan Boyz will be Fan Boyz and see this as Apple protecting itself. Well there are allot of evil things people and companies do to protect themselves. I can imagine a Librarian supporting this even with their Pro-Apple glasses.

By Reclaimer77 on 7/31/2012 7:21:21 AM , Rating: 3
Just like Microsoft can choose what to put in it's OS? Like a browser perhaps?

I hate to say this, but I feel it's time for some kind of investigation into Apple's business practices. Apple's basically saying her book would have been fine if it didn't mention Amazon, to me that's censorship and prejudice as a business practice.

By Schrag4 on 7/31/2012 12:17:15 PM , Rating: 2
Not the same as MS including a browser. Users have a choice to install other browsers. Not a good analogy IMO.

However, I'm going to get downrated for saying this, but why shouldn't Apple be allowed to pick and choose what books are available via their own service? I realize that's censorship, but are you seriously telling me that if you write a book for the sole purpose of bashing Apple that they should be forced to publish it for you? I also realize that mentioning Amazon doesn't equate to bashing Apple (opposite ends of the spectrum actually), but to me the line you or I might draw is arbitrary.

Look, I hate Apple as much as all of you, but I just can't get on board with the idea that they shouldn't be allowed to publish what they want to and reject what they want to as well. Part of me feels like those of you calling for investigation for this practice might be letting your hate for Apple impair your intellectual honesty and/or judgement.

Am I missing something?

And this is why
By chmilz on 7/30/2012 8:56:42 PM , Rating: 5
Platforms can't hold monopolies, and shouldn't own the content. Same goes for any content delivery, whether it be cable, wireless, ISP, etc.

RE: And this is why
By Motoman on 7/30/12, Rating: -1
RE: And this is why
By cfaalm on 7/31/2012 7:21:27 AM , Rating: 3
I think Apple is abusing their position as a vendor: censorship for the wrong reason. Just go to Amazon and search for an Apple related word like OSX. Lots of stuff.

RE: And this is why
By SAN-Man on 7/31/2012 8:26:54 AM , Rating: 3
It's easy to see the priorities of the two:

Amazon: Make money, hence, sells Apple stuff.

Apple: Impose an ideology, hence, does not sell Amazon stuff.

RE: And this is why
By Tony Swash on 7/31/12, Rating: -1
RE: And this is why
By Cheesew1z69 on 7/31/2012 12:53:44 PM , Rating: 1
Why do you have to lie? Seriously?

RE: And this is why
By Motoman on 7/31/2012 11:21:51 AM , Rating: 1
Go to Walmart and try to buy a gangsta rap CD. All the naughty words have been edited out, because Walmart doesn't want to carry music with naughty words in it.

Perfectly legal...Walmart gets to set the standards for products they sell, based on whatever they want.

Censorship only comes into play if the government is the actor. If a private business is the actor, it's not censorship.

Take for example Chick-fil-A. Reckon you could force them to sell copies of Brokeback Mountain in their stores against their will?


RE: And this is why
By Reclaimer77 on 7/31/2012 4:37:12 PM , Rating: 1
Perfectly legal...Walmart gets to set the standards for products they sell, based on whatever they want.

That's only because they, being the record labels, agreed to this to increase their profits.

If they didn't agree, they could have potentially sued Walmart etc etc. Maybe win, maybe lose, who knows.

I don't see this as being a good analogy. The key difference is Walmart wasn't competing AGAINST these record companies.

Apple is already under investigation by the DOJ over it's iBooks, for anti-trust violations. This is an anti-trust issue. Apple just can't seem to help itself, no matter what market it enters, it attempts to stack the deck against it's competitors. Moto, last time I checked that was illegal. The DOJ apparently thinks so. And where there is smoke, there is fire.

Take for example Chick-fil-A. Reckon you could force them to sell copies of Brokeback Mountain in their stores against their will?

Huh? Chick-fil-A doesn't sell books. This isn't a very good analogy either. Nobody is forcing Apple to publish books, they chose to do so. And to have a policy where they will not publish any book that even mentions a competitor, is absurd and probably illegal.

Censorship only comes into play if the government is the actor. If a private business is the actor, it's not censorship.

"Censorship is the suppression of speech or other public communication which may be considered objectionable, harmful, sensitive, or inconvenient as determined by a government, media outlet , or other controlling body. It can be done by governments and private organizations or by individuals who engage in self-censorship. "

RE: And this is why
By Motoman on 7/31/2012 6:30:00 PM , Rating: 1
Your quote on the definition of censorship is the general-use version, not the legal version which is what's at stake here.
Censorship, the suppression of words, images, or ideas that are "offensive," happens whenever some people succeed in imposing their personal political or moral values on others. Censorship can be carried out by the government as well as private pressure groups. Censorship by the government is unconstitutional.

Naturally anyone can engage in "censorship" but in legal terms the only kind of censorship that is illegal is that done by a governmental actor.

Apple isn't competing against book's selling their wares, in exactly the same way that Walmart sells the wares of record producers. And there's nothing illegal about Walmart's own form of censorship because, as noted before and above, they're not a governmental agency and therefore they can do as they please. The record companies remove "offensive" language from their CDs to sell to Walmart because of the impact not doing so would have on their bottom line - capitalism in it's purest sense.

What's going on here has nothing even vaguely similar to being anti-trust - in fact, it's clear you have no idea what that is granted that you think it does. Apple may well be in deep doody for anti-trust issues - but the idea at hand here in this article isn't one of them.

The Chick-fil-A is a perfect example, despite the fact that they don't, currently, sell books. First of all you can't force them to sell books in the first place if they don't want to - and you couldn't force them to sell a particular book if they did. It should be obvious that I picked on Chick-fil-A and Brokeback Mountain to show that, clearly, the homophobic restaurant chain most certainly would never want to sell anything that showed homosexuality in any kind of positive light.

...reckon you could force Chick-fil-A to sell hamburgers? They do sell food, after all. Just not hamburgers. You can't force them to do that.

...all in the same manner that you can't force Apple to sell an ebook - or anything else - that it doesn't want to sell. For any reason that it doesn't want to sell them. What about all the other apps and books that Apple declined to sell in their online store? Does everyone who has an app, book, whatever have some kind of legal basis to *force* Apple to sell their product, against their will?

No.Your quote on the definition of censorship is the general-use version, not the legal version which is what's at stake here.

RE: And this is why
By Reclaimer77 on 7/31/2012 7:22:40 PM , Rating: 2
I'm going to just agree to disagree on this one. I went through some mighty fine mental gymnastics to portray Apple as the villain here, and I can live with my effort as-is.

RE: And this is why
By Reclaimer77 on 7/31/2012 8:03:36 AM , Rating: 2
I want to agree with you, because I believe in Capitalism and the free market, however book publishing is a bit different. It would be impossible to argue that society is being harmed if Target doesn't carry the name brand you want. However with book publishing one could make the argument that anti-competitive practices like this are a form of censorship, and we should scrutinize Apple closely on this. Society and the flow of information COULD be harmed here.

RE: And this is why
By tamalero on 7/31/2012 10:23:03 AM , Rating: 2
Still, it seems like Apple's paranoia is going to extremes.

Classic Apple
By ritualm on 7/30/2012 9:19:23 PM , Rating: 3
A single mention of your competitor is verboten at One Infinite Loop. WHO KNEW?

"I don't care!" -- Tony Swash

RE: Classic Apple
By spread on 7/31/2012 12:11:39 AM , Rating: 3
"My girlfriend likes to peg me!" -- Tony Swash

RE: Classic Apple
By Tony Swash on 7/31/12, Rating: -1
RE: Classic Apple
By Tony Swash on 7/31/12, Rating: -1
RE: Classic Apple
By Cheesew1z69 on 7/31/2012 12:57:30 PM , Rating: 1
And you are pathetic...

stupid company, stupid feeders
By Shadowmaster625 on 7/31/2012 9:02:54 AM , Rating: 1
This is what 100 million dumbed down sheeple get for feeding a monstrosity of a company. May as well just give all your money to frickin walmart so they can finish sucking all the jobs out.

And jesus this is just a benign book. Imagine what is going to happen to anything actually controversial. Not that dumbed down apple sheeple would ever even know anything controversial...

RE: stupid company, stupid feeders
By Silver2k7 on 7/31/2012 1:23:29 PM , Rating: 2
Ehm ive never bought any e-books.. ok Ive bought some magazines in pdf.. if that counts.. but don't have an e-book reader (yet). When a good one is avalible for the right price and with color, then ill probably get one. As long as it takes standard files like doc/txt/pdf.

How is it these days is most e-books in pdf or is there some sort of copyprotected files ?? Like do you get the same kind of files from Apple vs Amazon ?? I would like there to atleast be a standard.. that would be nice ^^

RE: stupid company, stupid feeders
By kmmatney on 7/31/2012 2:18:21 PM , Rating: 2
ePub is a free and open standard, and works fine on the iPad/iPhone reader.

What a dirtbag
By anactoraaron on 7/30/2012 9:13:34 PM , Rating: 2
According to Schumer, the lawsuit will destroy the publishing industry because Amazon needs the competition in order to have better offerings (regarding book selection and price) for consumers.

Also if your pockets are deep enough- Schumer will come out publicly to say that not killing babies for brain research will destroy medical industry. Jesus how in the hell did this dirtbag get elected?

What about
By Lord 666 on 7/31/2012 12:46:41 AM , Rating: 2
Will Apple reject a book if Pubit is mentioned?

For my books, BN leads by far followed by Amazon with Apple a very distant third. However, I prefer to focus on the iPad as formatting is consistent plus can make a real interactive ebook. The e-ink devices are just PDF readers. However, considering a Nexus 7 for testing.

It's ok
By bug77 on 7/31/2012 4:26:37 AM , Rating: 2
At least she's allowed to know about Amazon. I hope.

Here is a great analogy
By shanethegeek on 7/31/2012 3:56:30 PM , Rating: 2
This is like Google saying that they will not display any search results for any Microsoft sites because Microsoft has a competing search engine!

Just because a book has a keyword in it, is not a reasonable denial for publishing a book. However, I could understand if the book had slanderous remarks regarding Apple as a company, but this is not the case.

The insanity of this is...
By ats on 7/31/2012 4:24:01 PM , Rating: 2
I can install Amazon's kindle reader on all idevices.

By WyldFyre on 8/1/2012 10:40:28 AM , Rating: 2
Why do they allow the Amazon Kindle app on their devices? So confused by their logic.

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