It took well over a year, but the first consumer lawsuit has been filed over Agency pricing. You can read the press release and legal paperwork on Scribd, but the short of it is that a couple consumers are accusing publishers of colluding with Apple.
The cabal known as the Agency 5 are accused of fixing prices on ebooks. This is an anti-trust lawsuit, and it’s being handled by a firm that specializes in class-action lawsuits.
I do find this interesting. It’s not going to resolve anything in the short term, and it probably won’t accomplish anything in the medium term, either. If this lawsuit is decided in less than 3 years I will be deeply surprised. Actually, if we take the Google Books lawsuit as a yardstick, this lawsuit probably won’t be done inside 6 years.
This lawsuit is likely to go on so long that the ebook market will have changed enough that the lawsuit will be redundant. I don’t know what will happen in the next X years but I would bet money that the lawsuit will look silly by the time it’s done.
That’s already happened with the Google Books lawsuit. Google have launched a public site based on the books they scanned, as well as an ebookstore, ebook reader, and apps.
At this point, all of the disputed orphan works (that anyone cares about) have probably already been pirated. There’s no need to worry about Google selling them anymore; if I wanted one I would look for it on a torrent somewhere.
image by Kradlum