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Books Businesses The Almighty Buck The Courts Apple

Amazon E-Book Buyers Receive Payment From Antitrust Lawsuit Settlement (idropnews.com) 42

If you bought a Kindle e-book between April 2010 and May 2012, you might see some Amazon credit coming your way. The company is reportedly distributing funds from an antitrust lawsuit that it levied at Apple in 2013. From a report: Amazon has set up a website listing the available credits, and it has begun sending out emails this morning to U.S. customers who are eligible for a refund. Apple and a handful of book publishers, including Penguin, HarperCollins, Machete Book Group and Macmillan, were found guilty of conspiring to inflate the prices of e-books in order to weaken Amazon's grip on the market. While the book publishers settled out of court, Apple decided to fight the lawsuit and appealed several times. Eventually, it was ordered to pay a total of $450 million in the protracted antitrust case.

Several refunds have already been distributed because of the lawsuit. In fact, the bulk of credits were sent out in 2014 and 2016. The round of credits being sent out today comes from an earmarked $20 million meant to pay states involved in the suit. The Amazon credits have a six-month shelf life and must be spent by April 20, 2018, or they'll expire. In addition the Amazon credits, customers may also be receiving Apple credits that can be used toward iBooks, iTunes and App Store purchases. Apple is currently notifying eligible customers via email.

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Amazon E-Book Buyers Receive Payment From Antitrust Lawsuit Settlement

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  • by rmdingler ( 1955220 ) on Wednesday October 18, 2017 @08:31PM (#55393813) Journal

    I received a $2.68 credit just today.

    Pretty much pushed me over the top, counting what's in the cookie jar, and I'm purchasing an island next to Branson.

    • Re: (Score:2, Funny)

      by Anonymous Coward

      Sorry you're out of luck, Amazon's law firm already purchased that island, and Apple's law firm the next over.

    • Me too. $2.68.

  • I received 78 cents.
  • I got twenty bucks. I spent it on birdseed.

  • by Anonymous Coward

    Because of this settlement there has been a dramatic drop in ebook prices. Now they are actually several pennies less than than the hardcopy version!

    • by Guspaz ( 556486 )

      Really? I've sometimes had to pay more for the eBook version than the hardcover version. The publishers are just being ridiculous these days.

      Look, I don't expect an eBook to be super cheap or anything, but I do expect that it costs no more than any physical edition as a bare minimum. And that's just the bare minimum, I'd argue that roughly 2/3 of the cost of a paperback is around where it ought to be.

    • Electronic and physical books have their own advantages, and if I want a book I'll buy whichever seems best to me. Typically, publishers and bookstores are in a symbiotic relationship, despite lots of friction, and as long as physical books are useful sources of profit undercutting them too much can be bad for business.

      Also, the physical book itself is cheap to make in quantity. The materials cost of a paperback is very little higher than the materials cost of the eBook.

  • I got $30 last time and $7 today from Amazon, as I bought 800+ books over a 20 year period.
  • by Anonymous Coward

    Never buy ebooks with DRM. NEVER!
    You are only licensing the content until they don't think you deserve it anymore.
    It isn't like a paper book, which can be left to your heirs, sold without hassle once you are done with the book.

    Go DRM free. Of course, treat the content "like a book" and respect the author/publisher's license.

    • While I don't want to discuss illegal actions in a public forum, I will point out that it's possible to find software that will violate the DMCA and remove the DRM in many cases.

  • I got 38 cents.
  • I got a whole $1.52!
  • by SteWhite ( 212909 ) on Thursday October 19, 2017 @06:52AM (#55395369)

    It's amazing the shit these laywers manage to pull off. Instead of an actual cash refund for how much they illegally ripped you off by, you get "credit" to spend at their store.

    Since they have their profit margin on whatever you buy with this, they are still making money from you and being rewarded for their bad behaviour. Plus I see people posting about the tiny amounts they are getting, so if you actually want to buy anything, you will need to spend even more of your money to take advantage of it.

    Add to that there is a nice time limit on there which will save them even more money, from all the people who don't claim it within the time limit, this is a joke. You might as well just let them off entirely, this as a "punishment" is a huge green light saying "please do something similar again in future, you'll make more money overall".

  • by RealGene ( 1025017 ) on Thursday October 19, 2017 @11:07AM (#55397073)
    The email they sent cost more than that.
  • by david_thornley ( 598059 ) on Thursday October 19, 2017 @11:41AM (#55397377)

    I buy eBooks from Barnes and Noble, and have been informed that I get a small credit from them because of the suit.

  • by mark_reh ( 2015546 ) on Thursday October 19, 2017 @01:58PM (#55398433) Journal

    Woohoo! I going to combine it with all that money I keep "saving" at the grocery store and pretty soon I'll have enough for a membership at Mar-a-Lago!

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