Editor's Note: This content was originally published on
by Louis Bedigian.
) seems to have caught another break in its ongoing battle with the
, U.S. District Judge Denise Cote said that she plans to limit the
Justice Department's measures for ensuring Apple will not institute
another e-book pricing scheme.
If the measures were approved as is, Apple would be required to
terminate its existing agreements with the five publishers that it
was accused of conspiring with: Hachette Book Group, HarperCollins,
Macmillan, Penguin Group, and Simon & Schuster. Apple would
also be forced to refrain from signing new e-book distribution
contracts for five years. This would prevent the company from
competing on price, the Justice Department argued.
These are just a few of the requirements that the department hoped
to employ. The
is quite extensive.
Bloomberg quoted the judge as saying that she would limit those
remedies to ensure that they "rest as lightly as possible" on
That remark seems to be a bit of a contradiction to her ruling. In
July, Judge Cote ruled that Apple did conspire with the
aforementioned publishers to fix e-book prices.
Per Judge Cote's ruling, Apple will be required to abandon agency
pricing agreements for two years -- three less than what the
Justice Department had requested.
Apple plans to appeal, but this may not be the only e-book case
that arises. The company is also at risk from angry consumers who
are bitter over the fact that they may have paid a few bucks more
for a digital copy of a new book.
While this legal battle has presented Apple with new challenges, it
pales in comparison to the ongoing patent dispute with
(OTCMKTS:SSNLF). The two firms have spent the last couple of years
in court, resulting in a
$1 billion windfall
for Apple that was
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