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Amazon Kindle eBook Users To Get Refunds After Settlement

samzenpus posted about 2 years ago | from the have-some-cash dept.

Books 90

hypnosec writes "Amazon, in an email to Kindle owners, has a revealed that following the settlement in the eBook price fixing lawsuit customers will be entitled to refunds between 30 cents and $1.32 on each book purchased. If the $69 million settlement is approved, the funds will be provided as credits to customers directly in their accounts. Users may request checks for the amount of credit that has been applied to their accounts. 'If the Court approves the settlements, the account credit will appear automatically and can be used to purchase Kindle books or print books,' wrote Amazon in the email."

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I use the Kindel app on my phone (0, Offtopic)

kilodelta (843627) | about 2 years ago | (#41651287)

And I note prices for Kindle books are now in the range of 50 cents to $20. In fact a lot of books I've purchased have been in $1 to $5 range. Pretty cool if you ask me.

How come they never send you a cheque? (0)

opus_magnum (1688810) | about 2 years ago | (#41651299)

Instead of forcing you to buy more stuff?

Re:How come they never send you a cheque? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41651309)

Because then they wouldn't cut out a good chunk of their settlement due to already inflated prices.

Re:How come they never send you a cheque? (3, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41651411)

According to the email I received from Amazon, they will send a check if you request one:

  "You also have the option to receive a check instead of your credit. You can request a check by calling 1-866-621-4153, or going to the Settlement website listed below, and clicking on the Check Request Option link. Be sure to reference the Settlement ID number found at the bottom of this email. The Settlement website is:
http://www.EBookAGSettlements.com"

Re:How come they never send you a cheque? (2, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41651417)

Really? From TFS:

Users may request checks for the amount of credit that has been applied to their accounts.

Re:How come they never send you a cheque? (1)

ZombieBraintrust (1685608) | about 2 years ago | (#41657105)

Sending a check for $0.30 to $1.32 is stupid. It would just be a subsidy for the post office if they did that. They will send you a check if you ask for one.

Re:How come they never send you a cheque? (1)

lengau (817416) | about 2 years ago | (#41658975)

To be fair, many of those cheques will be lumped together, as users have likely purchased more than just one or two books. However, the point remains that they will send you a cheque if you ask for one through their phone service or website.

Saw the email yesterday (4, Interesting)

93 Escort Wagon (326346) | about 2 years ago | (#41651321)

I may get a few bucks out of this - but my wife is probably looking at some serious money! Which probably just means she'll go on a book-buying spree...

So, basically, this money will end up going to Amazon.

Re:Saw the email yesterday (2)

gehrehmee (16338) | about 2 years ago | (#41651437)

a) You and your wife will have more book than you did before.

b) If you would have bought those books anyways, Amazon will have lost the money you would have spent on them.

Not quite (2)

Anubis350 (772791) | about 2 years ago | (#41652415)

a) You and your wife will have more book than you did before.

b) If you would have bought those books anyways, Amazon will have lost the money you would have spent on them.

Right on the first point. As to Amazon losing money though... no they won't, the money is coming from the publishers, not Amazon, so if you spend it on Amazon they at worst are getting the same money you might've spent on those books without the refund.

Re:Saw the email yesterday (3, Insightful)

ThatsMyNick (2004126) | about 2 years ago | (#41651463)

Unless you buy books authored by the Amazon, most of it will go to the authors (and publishers).

Re:Saw the email yesterday (2)

flappinbooger (574405) | about 2 years ago | (#41651679)

Unless you buy books authored by the Amazon, most of it will go to the authors (and publishers).

Most?

Since when?

Re:Saw the email yesterday (2)

ThatsMyNick (2004126) | about 2 years ago | (#41651731)

I am only familiar with KDP, the royalty for which is 70% (unless for some reason you dont allow lending). I assume publishing houses agree on better deals, than KDP. So yeah, I would expect most money to go to authors (and publishers).

Re:Saw the email yesterday (1)

helix2301 (1105613) | about 2 years ago | (#41663101)

If the court approves the settlements, the publishers will pay for e-book refunds that will be applied automatically to the Amazon.com accounts of eligible customers. Customers can use the refunds to purchase Kindle books or print books or request a check for the amount of the refund.

Re:Saw the email yesterday (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41654063)

Yea the don't go with crippling fines that would damage Amazon's shareholders enough that they would then vote out the deviants in charge.

I'd say the fine for an ethical violation should be no less than 10 percent of the shareholders value. That should encourage the to watch a company more closely.

Re:Saw the email yesterday (3, Informative)

Ferzerp (83619) | about 2 years ago | (#41657953)

You're completely off base. These were refunds levied against the publishers. Amazon has nothing to do with the suit. They are just the medium of refund for kindle owners.

Not Surprising (3)

p0p0 (1841106) | about 2 years ago | (#41651323)

Why make millions and give your customers a good value, when you can make tens of millions and rip everyone off? It's so stupid a fool could see what's wrong, but unfortunately these companies didn't have any fools on the board of directors.

Re:Not Surprising (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41651449)

This. At some point there was a shift from providing good business to profiting by any means. I blame management schools or something because it is very widespread and endemic amongst managerial types. I get that people are trying to drive the numbers as high as possible, but at some point ethics was taken out of the equation of the 'cost to do business' and instead replaced by fines/fees/settlements/etc arising from things usually caused by ethics violations.

It's like if the cost of getting a driver's license was $100, but a ticket for not having a license was only $10, you'd need to get pulled over 10 times in order to make it worth getting a driver's license. But there are a bunch of other considerations, like going to jail, having to take the time to pay out, and having the police find your drug trafficking operation, that aren't being figured in here. This is an analogy of what the business types are thinking.

Re:Not Surprising (1)

Dogtanian (588974) | about 2 years ago | (#41652645)

But there are a bunch of other considerations, like going to jail, having to take the time to pay out, and having the police find your drug trafficking operation, that aren't being figured in here. This is an analogy of what the business types are thinking.

So are you suggesting that the Amazon bosses *are* or *aren't* concerned about the police finding out about their secret drug trafficking operation?

Actually, they have a special "Drug Trafficking Department" page, but given the amount of time it takes to find *anything* on Amazon these days, I suspect that they're confident the police are unlikely to stumble across it ;-)

Re:Not Surprising (1)

desdinova 216 (2000908) | about 2 years ago | (#41653259)

I thought the High Prices were being forced on Amazon by the publishers. so it's more a case of Legacy Media Trying to keep a dead/dying business model alive like the **AA

Re:Not Surprising (3, Interesting)

moronoxyd (1000371) | about 2 years ago | (#41655355)

This money doesn't come from Amazon.
It's from the publishing houses that colluded on price issues following Apples demand.
Amazon is just delivering the settlement money to its customers as Amazon knows who bought what.

Re:Not Surprising (1)

RabidReindeer (2625839) | about 2 years ago | (#41656503)

This. At some point there was a shift from providing good business to profiting by any means.

Nah. Profiting by any means is as old as business itself, up to and including literally ambushing and robbing customers. It isn't good business, however, if your idea of good business involves repeat customers and you don't hold a monopoly. Remember: give a man a fish, and he'll sponge off you for a day. Teach a man to fish and you can bleed him for the rest of his life, because you own the lake that you rent him access to, you bloody conniving bastard!

What did turn for the worse is the ascendence of the "bean counters" coupled with the ideal that it's better to pillage and run quickly over making a slow, sustainable fortune. Mergers and Acquisitions that have zero (or negative) benefits for the customers and employees, but pay the executives when they buy and again when they sell off the gutted remains. "Cherry picking", "lemon dropping", and sawing the corners off everything because it saves 5 cents per thousand units sold. Hyper-efficiency, where you're so "efficient" that a bump in the road wrecks everything because there's not enough slack in the system to absorb it. "Bean blindness", where anything that doesn't look like a "bean" doesn't get counted.

Amazon lost me as a (formerly very active) customer 2 years ago because of certain things they were doing and have done since then, largely because they are a semi-monopoly and were throwing their weight around. There are other, far worse companies out there, however.

Should go to the FSF, EFF, or similar non-profit (0, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41651325)

The price fixing isn't a significant for purchases in comparison to the need to stop collusion and monopolies. Companies of a certain size should be required to support operating systems and devices in a standards complaint way. No one operating system or device should be favored. Digital restrictions should be illegal.

Re:Should go to the FSF, EFF, or similar non-profi (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41651395)

shut up.

Re:Should go to the FSF, EFF, or similar non-profi (4, Insightful)

93 Escort Wagon (326346) | about 2 years ago | (#41651631)

The price fixing isn't a significant for purchases in comparison to the need to stop collusion and monopolies. Companies of a certain size should be required to support operating systems and devices in a standards complaint way. No one operating system or device should be favored. Digital restrictions should be illegal.

I think it should go to the Golf Channel, because I really like golf.

Users may request... (0)

iYk6 (1425255) | about 2 years ago | (#41651329)

Users may request checks for the amount of credit that has been applied to their accounts.

Users may also request that Amazon employees reimburse them with oral sex. But will they honor these requests?

Re:Users may request... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41651355)

If they don't abide by the terms of the consequences, it most certainly would be legally actionable. (the check, not the BJ - that would open up a whole 'nother can of worms)

Re:Users may request... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41654343)

"that would open up a whole 'nother can of worms"

I see what you did there ...

What a Joke (1)

Herkum01 (592704) | about 2 years ago | (#41651331)

Do the courts even make a real attempt to punish corporations any more? The cash really goes the lawyers and the customers get the bread crumbs.

I tell you what, if want just, let the lawyers get reimbursed in the same portions and methods as their customers. If Amazon rips you off $100 and you get a $0.10 coupon for it. The lawyer who asks to get paid $1 million dollars should get $10,000 in coupons for purchasing e-books.

I bet you would see some justice. If not, lawyers getting screwed like, well that would be a least a little justice.

Re:What a Joke (4, Informative)

Ksevio (865461) | about 2 years ago | (#41651439)

In this case, Amazon wasn't the one price fixing e-books, it was the publishers. The money is just being returned via amazon who went with the account credit method. It saves a lot of processing fees, and most people who buy books on Amazon are going to buy other stuff on Amazon anyways. It isn't like Sony giving out $1.00 to be spent on more Sony CDs because of something Sony did. Amazon wanted lower prices just as much as the people buying the books.

Re:What a Joke (2)

Mabhatter (126906) | about 2 years ago | (#41652197)

Wonder how they managed to make it so easy? Surely, you'd have to mail some kind of postcard in.... Which you would only receive if you registered your book with the publisher...

Making it so easy is clearly Anazon getting back at the lawyers so there are no "unclaimed funds".

Re:What a Joke (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41653181)

Unlike physical retailers, amazon knows exactly who you are and which books you bought, so they can credit you back exactly instead of making you mail in receipts you would have probably thrown away years ago.

Re:What a Joke (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41654505)

Amazon wanted to continue their predatory below-cost pricing in order to drive competitors out of business and build a monopoly. Don't delude yourself that they had your interests at heart.

Re:What a Joke (1)

moronoxyd (1000371) | about 2 years ago | (#41655383)

With Apple and Google being to other big (or coming) players in this market you don't need to worry to much about Amazon succeding.

For Amazon selling books is a main part of their business. So they can not sell books below price for too long.
For Apple and Google selling books is just one small part of their portfolio. They could survive a lot longer subsidising book sales then Amazon could.

Re:What a Joke (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41663253)

Which isn't exactly true. Higher margin items sold elsewhere on Amazon can help cover losses used to exert control over the e-book market. I'd argue that Amazon hasn't been "primarily a book seller" in quite some time now.

In addition, in the digital era, the practice of loss leading is even easier. Overstock of old titles isn't a hindrance, so there is less incentive to lower the pricing over time. Loss lead on some of the big titles when they come out, and you can make it up with the trickle of sales over the long haul for the ever-growing list of older titles. No chance of running out of stock either, so you never have to stop selling an older title.

Barnes and Noble is the one in trouble because they are "just a bookstore". They can play the loss leader game, but that's about it.

Re:What a Joke (1)

bluefoxlucid (723572) | about 2 years ago | (#41656581)

The publishers are stupid.

Amazon created a hostile environment for books in the $10-$19.99 range. At $0.99-$9.99, you get 70% of the sale price as royalties and Amazon keeps 30%; whereas at $10+ you get 35% and Amazon keeps 65%. That means that the profits at $20 are equal to the profits at $9.99, and the profits at $10 are equal to the profits at $5. The market effect of a price point of $20 instead of $9.99 is huge: the books cost twice as much, people can buy half as many, and if they're buying from your competitors as well that means they may pass over you. Worse, if your competitors sell books for $9.99--say you have a basic book on AI, a cookbook, or a novel in a genre that's highly popular and thus has lots of options--then people will balk at your $20 sales price and select for your competitor more often, because they get more books for the same amount of money.

Because of this and the book market in general, it becomes very much preferred to sell books for $9.99. A paperback costs $8-$15 typically; consider you have to raise the price of an ebook to over $20 to make a profit above the price at $10 and you'll quickly realize you're above the market value of your product. That's why Amazon does it this way: the leap across the $10-$20 gap is huge and devastating, and gives no profit; they are keeping ebook prices low.

And yet I still see $15 books on kindle!

Re:What a Joke (1)

Quirkz (1206400) | about 2 years ago | (#41659231)

Are you sure about that? I haven't sold anything through them, but I thought I understood the 65% was only applied at the low end - books under $2 or $3, and that it was 35% for everything above that point. I don't ever remember hearing about another transition higher up the price scale.

My system makes a little sense, because there's some fixed costs that need to be made up for on really cheap items, hence the higher percentage for really cheap items. A pricing scheme like you cite wouldn't have any real rational purpose at all, other than profiting from confused sellers.

Re:What a Joke (1)

bluefoxlucid (723572) | about 2 years ago | (#41660023)

https://kdp.amazon.com/self-publishing/help?topicId=A29FL26OKE7R7B [amazon.com] it's 20% below any other price now. Used to be up to $9.99. Now I guess a $20 book can get 70% at $16, and an $8 paperback can be sold for $6.40 at 70%. The big trick is if you sell your book as a paperback ever, for $8, that's your base price and you need to be 20% below that--never mind that its main distribution is a $25 hardcover! So yeah.

Re:What a Joke (1)

niado (1650369) | about 2 years ago | (#41661375)

I think this is what you wanted to link:

List Price Requirements [amazon.com]

Re:What a Joke (1)

bluefoxlucid (723572) | about 2 years ago | (#41661747)

Hmm, yeah that helps. But now we're at lowest common union (80% of $10 means you can't $9.99 at 70%), but yeah I think you found it.

Re:What a Joke (4, Informative)

Kalriath (849904) | about 2 years ago | (#41651447)

Perhaps read the story? Amazon isn't the defendant in the case, and Amazon isn't actually giving out any money. They're simply disbursing funds on behalf of the real defendants, Harper Collins, Hachette, and Simon and Schuster.

The real story though, is that they've finally destroyed the Agency Model that Apple introduced to force Amazon to charge whatever the publishers decided they wanted to charge, which means Amazon will finally be able to reduce the price of eBooks to historic levels.

Re:What a Joke (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41651969)

The real story though, is that they've finally destroyed the Agency Model that Apple introduced to force Amazon to charge whatever the publishers decided they wanted to charge, which means Amazon will finally be able to reduce the price of eBooks to historic levels.

Yes, I too am looking forward to Amazon regaining their monopoly.

Re:What a Joke (2)

shutdown -p now (807394) | about 2 years ago | (#41653833)

Are you saying that Apple can't compete with Amazon unless it forces Amazon to set a particular price?

So basically we're looking at a monopoly with lower prices, or at a duopoly with higher prices and price collusion. Gee, I wonder what I should prefer as a customer?..

Re:What a Joke (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41654347)

Actually Apple couldn't compete and entered into an illegal collusion to set prices. If you do not agree to the prices you would not be allowed to sell the books. Basically trying to create a monopoly at a much higher price by driving Amazon and B&N and others to yield to your "Agency Pricing".

Re:What a Joke (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41651473)

This suit and settlement was not against Amazon. It's against the publishing companies that conspired to force Amazon to raise prices to match Apple's. If you want to punish someone for this, go after the publishing companies and Apple, not Amazon.

Re:What a Joke (1)

nurb432 (527695) | about 2 years ago | (#41651527)

Do the courts even make a real attempt to punish corporations any more? The cash really goes the lawyers and the customers get the bread crumbs.

Who is the system run by? THe lawyers.

Re:What a Joke (1)

93 Escort Wagon (326346) | about 2 years ago | (#41651603)

Do the courts even make a real attempt to punish corporations any more? The cash really goes the lawyers and the customers get the bread crumbs.

Normally I'd agree with you - but, in this case, the suit was brought by a bunch of state Attorney's General. I could be wrong, but I don't think they'd be contracting with private firms.

Re:What a Joke (1)

mcgrew (92797) | about 2 years ago | (#41658983)

the suit was brought by a bunch of state Attorney's General.

That State's Attorney has a General? I thought General was an Army rank?

Or are you not a native speaker and don't understand apostrophes?

Re:What a Joke (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41653721)

Do the courts even make a real attempt to punish corporations any more?

Everything you said after this doesn't take away from the fact that the corporation that broke the law IS paying out. Are the lawyers 'representing' the class members making out with an excessively large share of it? Yes. But that doesn't make it any less of a punishment of the corporation.

ebook pricing is a total scam (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41651335)

EBooks were supposed to cost much less than physical books. And they did, until everybody bought their ereaders, then the ebook sellers seemed to pull the old bait-and-switch.

Now, ebooks often cost as much, or more, than the cost of the hardcover editions, and ebooks might cost nearly twice as much as the paperback editions.

Re:ebook pricing is a total scam (1)

Masterwolf3 (1314997) | about 2 years ago | (#41654405)

And this is what the lawsuit was about. Apple and publishers colluded to drive the prices up and keep Amazon and B&N from dropping their e-book prices. You should actually be celebrating this. For once the government worked.

Re:ebook pricing is a total scam (1)

walterbyrd (182728) | about 2 years ago | (#41659585)

You should actually be celebrating this. For once the government worked.

When I see ebook prices drop significantly, then I'll celebrate. A $0.30 check is no BFD to me.

Re:ebook pricing is a total scam (1)

asdf7890 (1518587) | about 2 years ago | (#41656003)

EBooks were supposed to cost much less than physical books.

This is only true for books that are already in existence or new books that are not giong through the publishing system at all. For new works, especially large technical books/creating/reviewing/editing/... the material is a ot of the initial cost so while I'd expect an ebook to be cheaper than the dead-tree version I wouldn't expect it to be significantly cheaper upon first release. Even converting an existing older book to ebook formats (or an existing ebook to other ebook formats) is not free of work - someone needs to review the result of the conversion and make fixes as needed when parts come out badly. Of course some time after release I would expect the ebook versions to drop in price as the continue costs of making/storing/distributing them is not nearly as large as it is for physical units.

When you see an ebook more expensive than the paper version it is often that the paper version's price is being controlled by "heck, we need to shift these things out of the warehouse before they are worth even less and so we can make room for new stuff" which isn't a factor with non-physical items so the companies involved quietly forget about them and don't have any such reason to adjust the prices. In this instance the ebook price should be falling by that point too IMO, though I have no objection to physical books being cheaper under "fire sale" conditions (but if the condition lasts, especially if more dead tree editions are being produced, then the eBook price is a rip off being used to subsidise the paper version).

Of course this case isn't about how ebooks are prices compared to physical books (at least not directly). It is about the publishers and some distributors colluding to fix prices higher than they should be (irrespective of any ebook/physical differences).

stick it to them (4, Interesting)

amiga3D (567632) | about 2 years ago | (#41651343)

If you really want to make them pay, force them to send you a check for that 30 cents. The cost of processing it will far outpace the measly 30 cent check.

Re:stick it to them (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41652369)

Why stick it to someone who just won a lawsuit on your behalf? Looks like someone stuck it to you by short changing you on a reading comprehension education.

Re:stick it to them (1)

amiga3D (567632) | about 2 years ago | (#41664763)

I know you are just an AC but try to keep up. The summary states "Users may request checks for the amount of credit that has been applied to their accounts." The article directs you to a website where you can request a check by the settlement attorneys. You do know that these attorneys charge the losing party for all costs associated with this don't you? If you've ever dealt with an attorney you would. They charge for every single call, sheet of paper, ink pen, staple, stamp and what have you. I bet you'd be amazed at what a refund check of 30 cents would cost. My reading comprehension is fine, work on yours.

Re:stick it to them (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41654861)

This would only make sense if I were never going to buy another ebook again. Otherwise you are advocating me spending the time to demand a check, open a check, sign a check, driving to the bank and depositing it, and put the funds back into Amazon to buy books. My costs will far outweight the costs of them automatically processing a measly 30 cent check. (Not to mention the waste involved in that offends my sensibilities.)

Re:stick it to them (1)

amiga3D (567632) | about 2 years ago | (#41664701)

Really. Just throw the check away. You'd be out 30 cents and there out a bunch of dollars involved in processing and mailing it to you. How simple does it get really? Now magnify by all the tens of thousands of checks they have to send out and you see where they start to really hurt.

And? (-1, Troll)

MindPrison (864299) | about 2 years ago | (#41651373)

This is slashdot news because...?

Re:And? (1)

Dyinobal (1427207) | about 2 years ago | (#41651425)

People who use slashdot also tend to read, people who read then to buy books off amazon, and lately digital sales have been growing by leaps and bounds. Thus this news, falls under News for Nerds.

Re:And? (1)

mcgrew (92797) | about 2 years ago | (#41659149)

People who use slashdot also tend to read, people who read then to buy books off amazon

Considering how many here (of all places) who seem not to understand when and when not to use an apostrophe, the difference between the verbs "lose" and "loose", have no ability to discern between there, they're, and their, I don't think your logic holds up. Just because you read slashdot doesn't mean you read actual books.

Re:And? (1)

Glothar (53068) | about 2 years ago | (#41659457)

People who use slashdot also tend to read

Are from a different Slashdot than I am? I thought one of the core values of the Slashdot crowd was never reading (TFA).

Re:And? (1)

Ksevio (865461) | about 2 years ago | (#41651461)

Because it's about e-books, and the tech giants Amazon and Apple.

Other countries (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41651479)

presumably they ripped off people globally, so are other countries people going to start legal action ?

Re:Other countries (1)

tuppe666 (904118) | about 2 years ago | (#41653521)

presumably they ripped off people globally, so are other countries people going to start legal action ?

The market for e-books is still very centred in the UK(20%) and US(30%). The EU commission which is also investigating Apple and the the other 5 crooks is hoping to reach a settlement!?

European Competition Commissioner Joaquin Almunia "Hopefully in the coming couple of months, we will reach a settlement,”

“For a period of two years, the four publishers will not restrict, limit or impede e-book retailers’ ability to set, alter or reduce retail prices for e-books and/or to offer discounts or promotions,” the European Commission said in its Official Journal, detailing the offer under consideration.

All ebooks? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41651529)

Is this for all e-books bought or only ones from certain publishers?

Re:All ebooks? (1)

Masterwolf3 (1314997) | about 2 years ago | (#41654419)

Only from the 3 publishers named in the settlement. (So far) Two more publishers and Apple are still under the gun since they were not part of this settlement.

coinread (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41651735)

frack publishers! get free ebooks at coinread.com

International Sales (3, Interesting)

Russ1642 (1087959) | about 2 years ago | (#41651813)

Is this only applicable to sales made to US customers?

Re:International Sales (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41654365)

I would guess yes since this was a US court decision.

Re:International Sales (1)

Masterwolf3 (1314997) | about 2 years ago | (#41654491)

In an edit to above there is a similar lawsuit in the EU

Editors? What editors? (1)

wonkey_monkey (2592601) | about 2 years ago | (#41652191)

"Amazon, in an email to Kindle owners, has a revealed

Has a revealed?

that following the settlement in the eBook price fixing lawsuit customers will be entitled to refunds between 30 cents and $1.32 on each book purchased.

Have you met the comma [wikipedia.org] ?

the funds will be provided as credits to customers directly in their accounts. Users may request checks for the amount of credit that has been applied to their accounts.

Wow, that's a torturous couple of sentences. How about "the funds will be credited directly to customers' accounts, or by check if requested." Still, credit to the submitter for not just blindly copying and pasting straight from the article.

"'f the Court approves the settlements

What is this, missing initial letter day? Just had the exact same thing in another summary.

Re:Editors? What editors? (1)

vlueboy (1799360) | about 2 years ago | (#41652819)

"'f the Court approves the settlements

What is this, missing initial letter day? Just had the exact same thing in another summary.

That is an error due to copy-and-paste oversignts: A sentence boundary like the "I" is easy to miss with the mouse, especially if it is a period or an I. On my smartphone's touch screen, selecting a block of text to copy is a huge pain. Must start over until the right start AND end are selected.

I hope that got resolved in newer versions of Android, but my provider won't update mine anyway. Gone out the window are "intuitive" desktop tricks like selection-pushing a page up and down when your "cursor" signals that the desired text continues past the screen's boundaries.

Re:Editors? What editors? (1)

omnichad (1198475) | about 2 years ago | (#41656743)

Right, on the smartphones, the cursor when selecting is often just a vertical bar (Identical to I in Arial) and not even the I-beam shape which is slightly distinguished from the I, especially a non-serif I. When selecting on a smartphone you can't tell whether the cursor is before or after that initial I without a careful look.

Not just Amazon, Apple too. (3, Informative)

welshsocialist (542986) | about 2 years ago | (#41652315)

It appears that Apple is also involved with this settlement. Here's the email I just got:

Benefits from an Attorney General E-books Settlement Fund

Para una notificación en Español, llamar o visitar nuestro website.

[Settlement ID Number]

Records indicate that you are eligible for a payment from Settlements reached by the State Attorneys General with electronic book publishers Hachette, HarperCollins, and Simon & Schuster. The Settlements resolve an antitrust lawsuit about the price of electronic books. Apple Inc. (“Apple”) has not been sued in this case. It is assisting in providing this notice as a service to its customers.

What the Settlements Provide

The Settlements create a $69 million fund for payments to consumers who purchased qualifying electronic books from April 1, 2010 through May 21, 2012. If the Court approves the Settlements, eligible consumers like you will receive credits to your iTunes account. The credit can be used on any purchases of electronic books. The amount of your payment has been determined based on the qualifying electronic book purchases identified by Apple in your iTunes account.

How to Receive your Benefit

Because you are pre-qualified, you do not need to do anything at this time to receive your credit. If the Court approves the Settlements, you will receive another email letting you know how to activate your credit. Once you activate the credit, it will be applied to your account by Apple. (If you bought electronic books from more than one retailer, you may receive notices with different instructions about whether you will receive a credit or need to file a Claim Form for that retailer. You will have a separate claim for each retailer and you should follow the specific instructions from each one.)

You also have the option to receive a check instead of your credit. You can request a check by calling 1-866-621-4153, or going to the Settlement website listed below, and clicking on the Check Request Option link. Be sure to reference the Settlement ID number found at the top of this email. The Settlement website is:

www.EBookAGSettlements.com

Your Other Rights

You can choose to exclude yourself from the Settlements and keep your right to sue on your own. If you exclude yourself, you can't receive any benefits from the Settlements. If you don't exclude yourself, you can submit objections about the Settlements.

Your written Exclusion Form or objections must be postmarked by December 12, 2012. Please visit the Settlement website for detailed information on how to submit a valid Exclusion Form or objection.

A separate lawsuit against two other publishers and Apple continues and is set for a trial in 2013. Apple denies the allegations in that lawsuit. Your rights in the separate suit are not affected by any action you take in regards to these Settlements.

The Court will hold a hearing on February 8, 2013 at 10 a.m. to consider whether to approve the Settlements. You or your own lawyer may ask to appear and speak at the hearing.

For more detailed information:
Call 1-866-621-4153 or Visit www.EBookAGSettlements.com

Re:Not just Amazon, Apple too. (1)

Masterwolf3 (1314997) | about 2 years ago | (#41654429)

Actually this all started because of Apple wanting to try and monopolize the e-book market. They created an 'Agency Pricing' format that precluded other companies from selling e-books at a level lower than Apple's prices and if they didn't agree to this they could not sell books from that publisher.

Re:Not just Amazon, Apple too. (1)

bluefoxlucid (723572) | about 2 years ago | (#41656709)

So the agencies that are being sued now can sue Apple for causing them to get sued and demand recompense for this bunglefuck. This is why you should just use the Baen Free Ebook Library.

Typical.... (4, Interesting)

Lumpy (12016) | about 2 years ago | (#41652633)

Lawyers get Billions to buy an island and have solid gold audi cars. the people ACTUALLY harmed get nothing at all.

Why don't class action lawsuits have a cap on what he lawyers can make? They should be capped at $300.00 an hour or $500,000.00 whichever is smaller, before taxes.

Re:Typical.... (1)

tuppe666 (904118) | about 2 years ago | (#41653469)

Lawyers get Billions to buy an island and have solid gold audi cars. The people ACTUALLY harmed get nothing at all.

Why don't class action lawsuits have a cap on what he lawyers can make? They should be capped at $300.00 an hour or $500,000.00 whichever is smaller, before taxes.

This has nothing to do with lawyers involved in a class action lawsuit. This is 100% to do with Apple and Five Book Publishers being a bunch of evil crooks...they formed a cartel to fix prices, hurting the free market and the consumer. Its about the "U.S. Department of Justice's Antitrust Division" investigating Apple and the five publishers for two years, and getting them to reimburse money stolen by Apple from customers, and they have been told not to conspire for a further 5 years. Interestingly they do list the state fees and costs...$7.5 Million which is a lot less than $69 Million.

Re:Typical.... (1)

Richard_at_work (517087) | about 2 years ago | (#41655823)

Fine, cap it - hopefully that will result in the number of class action lawsuits going down (a win-win!).

Remember, the "class" don't hire the lawyers, the lawyers are committing to the risk all on their own, no ones going to cover their costs if the lawsuit fails. So why should it be capped? If you want a higher rate of return, you can always opt out of the class action and bring your own lawsuit, but you are going to have to cover the risk yourself as well...

Re:Typical.... (1)

bluefoxlucid (723572) | about 2 years ago | (#41656733)

Class action suits are raised to punish companies in a case where you can get $25 out of them in small claims. You and ten million other people.

Re:Typical.... (1)

Richard_at_work (517087) | about 2 years ago | (#41656815)

But they aren't raised by the "class" - which is my point. People routinely bitch on here about the lawyers getting huge payouts while the class participants get next to nothing, when its pretty clear which one of those two is bearing all the risks. If you don't like the class action method, you are welcome to take the risk on yourself and take the matter to court privately...

Also, its unlikely that major overarching judgements that come out of class actions (such as this one - the death of a particular business model) would happen in a small claims court, you would have to bring a proper court case against the other side for that to happen.

Re:Typical.... (1)

bluefoxlucid (723572) | about 2 years ago | (#41661697)

Right. You'd have to bring suit, get your $25, pay your lawyer $400. Bring suit, get your $25, pay your lawyer $400. Everyone has to do this so they have to pay their lawyers a lot of lawyer fees and pay out money. In the end, you wind up battling the for legal fees which you can't always extract.

Re:Typical.... (1)

Richard_at_work (517087) | about 2 years ago | (#41667007)

Bingo - and in a class action, the class never have to pay the lawyer fees because those are either absorbed by the other side, or absorbed by the lawyers themselves.

Hence why the bitching about the lawyers getting large amounts of money is pathetically ridiculous.

Re:Typical.... (1)

bluefoxlucid (723572) | about 2 years ago | (#41668279)

No it's just entitlement. It's like this: Jimmy kicked dirt in your face so you go bitching that Jimmy is bad. Jimmy's mum punishes Jimmy. Jimmy can't come out to play now. And you're like, wait, what the fuck? HEY! HEY!!!! WHAT THE FUCK JIMMY'S MOM! YOU BITCH WHERE'S MY ICE CREAM!!!

Re:Typical.... (1)

bluefoxlucid (723572) | about 2 years ago | (#41656721)

Dude gold is dense as fucking hell. A solid gold Audi would be a slow fuel hog.

reply (0)

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Re:reply (1)

bluefoxlucid (723572) | about 2 years ago | (#41656745)

Shanghai Shunky Machinery Co. is famous for equipment malfunctions crushing their employee limbs in their factories and we should boycott them for their slave labor practices?

How will this work out for Canadians (1)

phorm (591458) | about 2 years ago | (#41655203)

As a Canadian, I wonder how this will work out.
Currently, the price of many mainstream/popular eBooks exceed (sometimes greatly) the $CAD price of their paperback counterpart.
The paperback price is also $2-3+ higher than the US counterpart, despite the CAD being at par or higher than the USD. The (lame) argument for this has traditionally been the extra costs for shipping the books to Canada etc.

So if this reduces the overall eBook price to something reasonable, will I as a Canadian be able to buy an eBook at a par price to that in the US?

As a Kindle owner...YeeHaw! (1)

rmdingler (1955220) | about 2 years ago | (#41664215)

I'm just hoping the refund will cover the price of The Fifty Shades of Grey Trilogy.
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