The Morning Coffee – 26 July 2012

Here are a few posts to read this morning.

  • A decade of digital media flops and predictions (paidContent)
  • The End of the Beginning of the Future of Bookstores (Ampersand)

  • The Fair Use Ebook Crack (American Libraries Magazine)
  • Goodreads has a structural problem (VacuousMinx)
  • Latest Ars Technica OS X review has bumpy road to e-book release (TeleRead)
  • Media-to-E-Book Trend Continues: Chronicle of Higher Education Publishes First E-Book (Digital Book World)
  • Why Amazon Shouldn't Be in the Hardware Business (TIME.com)
  • Your Unspecial Antitrust Snowflake (Courtney Milan’s Blog)
  • That last link is especially worth reading. It deflates all of the "publishing is special" balloons.

    About Nate Hoffelder (11372 Articles)
    Nate Hoffelder is the founder and editor of The Digital Reader: "I've been into reading ebooks since forever, but I only got my first ereader in July 2007. Everything quickly spiraled out of control from there. Before I started this blog in January 2010 I covered ebooks, ebook readers, and digital publishing for about 2 years as a part of MobileRead Forums. It's a great community, and being a member is a joy. But I thought I could make something out of how I covered the news for MobileRead, so I started this blog."

    6 Comments on The Morning Coffee – 26 July 2012

    1. The problem with “Your Unspecial Antitrust Snowflake” is that it is about price fixing and the DOJ lawsuit is not about price fixing; it is about conspiring to price fix. The DOJ says that the price fixing is OK as long as two or more publishers don’t agree in advance to price fix on the same day at the same time. Do not forget that Random House is not part of the antitrust suit even though it is “price fixing.” Constantly lost in the arguments in support of the DOJ settlement is that the settling defendants can return to price fixing after a couple of years with the DOJ’s approval. The suit is about conspiracy not about price fixing.

      • That’s not quite true. Anti-trust action was always about the conspiracy, not the activity.

        And I wonder if letting publishers go back to their old ways was the DOJ throwing them a bone. This way they might not fight as hard.

        • That was my read. They settled quicky so they got a slap on the wrist and were left alone to deal with the class-action suits.
          The ones fighting?
          If it actually gets to trial and they don’t settle the night before…
          Well, the DOJ got very testy reading the clueless comments. And the Judge has to wade through them, too.
          She might not be in a good mood if the thing gets to trial and might decide to, ahem, throw the book at them.

      • And in a big ole ditto to what Nate said, check out wikipedia’s definition of price fixing. “Price fixing requires a conspiracy between sellers or buyers. The purpose is to coordinate pricing for mutual benefit of the traders.” When a single player sets a price, it is not called price fixing. I think terms like “retail price maintenance” or “resale price maintenance” are used. RPM has been treated as illegal for part of our history in the US but is increasingly treated as legal.

        But RPM != price fixing, and price fixing requires collusion.

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