A new lawsuit in New York alleges that Amazon and five book publishers are working together to price e-books, The Guardian reports.
Editors include Penguin Random House, Hachette, Simon and Schuster, Harper Collins and Macmillan, often referred to as the “Big Five”.
The lawsuit alleges that the publishers pay high commissions to Amazon, which increases the price of e-books on the platform. This forces consumers to pay higher prices for e-books bought on platforms other than Amazon.
“Amazon’s agreement with its co-conspirators is an unreasonable barrier to trade that prevents competitive pricing and causes plaintiffs and other consumers to overpay when they buy e-books from the Big Five through an e-book retailer that works with Amazon is competing, “said the lawsuit. “This damage will persist and will not subside if Amazon and the Big Five are not stopped.”
The lawsuit seeks compensation for consumers who bought e-books through other retailers. Relief is also sought which would require the online retailer and the Big Five to “stop enforcing anti-competitive price restrictions”.
It’s worth noting that the company that filed this class action lawsuit successfully sued Apple and the five publishers over the same matter 10 years ago.
Source: The Guardian