While Apple is still fighting the court’s ruling that it was involved in e-book price-fixing with America’s largest book publishing companies, those publishers have all reached settlements with the various regulators, attorneys general, and others over the same allegations that they colluded to set an inflated price on e-books. Today, Amazon began issuing credit to its customers who paid too much because of the publishers’ actions.
In e-mails going out to customers, Amazon writes:
“Good news! You are entitled to a credit of $X.XX for some of your past Kindle book purchases. The credit results from legal settlements reached with publishers Hachette, HarperCollins, Simon & Schuster, Macmillan, and Penguin in antitrust lawsuits filed by State Attorneys General and Class Plaintiffs about the price of eBooks.
You don’t have to do anything to claim your credit, we have already added your credit to your Amazon account. We will automatically apply your available credit to your next purchase of a Kindle book or print book sold by Amazon.com, regardless of publisher. The credit applied to your purchase will appear in your order summary. If your account does not reflect this credit, please contact Amazon’s customer service.
For more information about the settlements, please visit http://www.amazon.com/ebooksettlements
Your credit is valid for one year and will expire after 03/31/2015. If you have not used your credit, we will send you another email 90 days before it expires to remind you that it is still available.
Thanks for being a Kindle customer.”
For those coming into this story late, here are the basics. When e-books first launched, they were priced and sold in much the same way that traditional books are. Publishers sold them to online retailers at wholesale prices and these e-tailers could then determine whether to sell at the sticker price or offer discounts at their own discretion.
SOURCE: Chris Morran