Does Agency Pricing Mean Higher E-Book Prices? That Depends

books, bookcase, library, book shelves, bookshelf, book shelf, libraries

The term “agency pricing” may not be familiar to those outside the book industry, but it has become a serious issue with the Justice Department’s antitrust case against Apple and five major book publishers for colluding on prices as a defensive move against Amazon (NSDQ: AMZN). One of the key factors in that case will likely be whether consumers have been harmed by this model – for example, whether they are paying higher prices for e-books as a result, a topic that my PaidContent colleague Laura Owen and I debated recently. On Friday, independent distributor Smashwords revealed some internal numbers that show e-book prices have actually gone down as a result of the agency model. So does that mean the federal case is irrelevant?

Comments have been disabled for this post