The entire post by BeldarBlog analyzing the law decision behind Apple’s antitrust spanking is well worth perusing in full, so do so. But here’s a taste.
[Apple CEO Steve] Jobs was bragging in public about the price-fixing conspiracy that his company had organized and executed to fix ebook prices. The reason the publishers were threatening to withhold their books from Amazon altogether was because that was the key term in the conspiracy that Apple was proposing. Unless Amazon agreed to knuckle under to the “agency pricing” model that Apple wanted (because it would eliminate retail price competition in ebooks, to Apple’s benefit, and let Apple compete with Amazon on the basis of hardware, never price) — Amazon wouldn’t be able to sell ebooks at any price.
This whole fact pattern would never make a good exam question in an antitrust course in law school. It’s way too easy. There’s an arsenal of smoking guns. It’s like no one at Apple ever heard of the Sherman Act.
And it looks like they’re going to pay for that lack of hearing, too. Guess they should have settled…
PS: Full disclosure, of course: I am an Amazon.com affiliate for Maryland.