I started buying eBooks from Amazon a long time for the Kindle. Long before the iPad, I was paying $9.99 for the eBooks. Always wondered how that amount was divided among the publisher, the author, connectivity through Sprint and Amazon profit. Since there was no book manufacturing costs, it still seemed like a lot of money and more than a sufficient amount to go around.
Then one day I noted that eBook titles were $12.99 -- at both Amazon -- and -- Barnes and Noble. Turns out that was early 2010. I understand pricing going up a little at a time, but the three dollar jump turned me off and I bought few books after that unless they were available at the old $9.99 model.
Turns out it was greed to make easy money for Apple. "When Apple came out with the iPad, it allowed publishers to set book prices as long as Apple got a 30 percent cut and publishers offered their lowest prices through Apple." Quoted from a Bloomberg article: U.S. Said to Prepare Apple Lawsuit Over E-Book Price-Fixing
The Wall Street Journal article U.S. Warns Apple, Publishers paraphrases material from the Isaacson's bio of Jobs. (Near the end of the piece.) The whole thing was a Jobs idea. It appears the real goal was to eliminate Amazon competition.
Will the prices change. Wondering. Before the Justice Department files suit, all parties will settle the thing for a fine and none will admit any collusion. They will just pay the fine and go on with business. Just another example of big business greed.
Enter the world of self publishing eBooks. No doubt the future of book publishing will look very different. With that, book stores will probably go the way of record stores.
At the Authors Guild, a Letter from Scott Turow: Grim News is in response to the planned Justice Department filing. Scott Turow is an author and president of the Authors Guild
Additional comments by John Scalzi in The Collusion Case Against Publishers