Jordan Weissmann, an associate editor at The Atlantic, suggests that the Justice department is ignoring the real anti-competitive threat in e-books by going after Apple and the “agency-five” (How Cheap Should Books Be?):
And so we arrive in the present, where antitrust law now favors a corporate hegemon like Amazon, over the interests of smaller, less powerful businesses, such as the publishers. And perhaps this is how our system should work. If Random House and the like can’t survive without setting a floor on prices, maybe it’s time for them to adjust their business models. After all, they’re not factory workers trying to unionize. They’re well-funded corporations, some of which are owned by even larger corporations. They can innovate, or at least try. Maybe this will also force Apple to use its marketing muscle and budget to compete more fiercely with Amazon on books.
But its hard to escape the sense that this means the book business will simply have to go back to living on Amazon’s terms. And we’ll have the Justice Department to thank for that.
Read more at The Atlantic.