New Penguin Contracts With Amazon and Others?

Penguin may have new contracts with Amazon and other retailers, reports Publishers Lunch.

Digital Book World has been tracking anomalous prices for Penguin titles on Amazon and other retailers for weeks. Several tips have come in from sources that wanted to remain anonymous reporting the same thing. However, Amazon is still publishing its infamous disclaimer near its ebook prices for Penguin, “This price was set by the publisher.” Further, when contacting Penguin public relations to confirm that new contracts have been signed, the company says that negotiations are ongoing and offers no further comment.

A Penguin Random House spokesperson has offered comment:

Penguin Random House is subject to the consent decree; we are obligated to adhere to its terms by thirty days after the close of the transaction that established our merged company. We are taking all the requisite steps to comply with every aspect of the decree by July 31.

The translation of this, as we understand it, is that the company isn’t commenting on whether it has signed new contracts but that Penguin Random House will be under new contracts on or before July 31. However, according to the Final Judgement for Penguin when it settled with the DOJ, the company will have had to have new contracts with retailers well before now.

So, the mystery is, if Penguin is under new contracts with retailers, which it seems like it is, why does Amazon still have its famous disclaimer posted regarding ebook prices?


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