Publishers Need To Get a Clue

by Karl Denninger

Most publishers are stuck in a world that they believe is flat.

Apple suffered a final defeat in its legal fight with the Justice Department over e-books Monday, when the Supreme Court refused to hear the company’s appeal. When the case was filed in April 2012 it was seen as a fight over the future of the digital book industry, with Apple Inc. and the five biggest publishers aligned against Inc.

Here’s the problem — price-fixing is illegal. But what the publishers “won” (and they did) was a pyrrhic victory. Many modern fiction books sell, with the publishers setting prices, in electronic form for more than $10, while you can commonly buy the paperback in a bookstore for less.

I’ve seen this myself; my own book Leverage is $18 and change on the Kindle and $25 or so in hardback. What?

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