Big publishers aren’t the only ones concerned about Amazon’s “predatory” e-book pricing practices. It’s also worrying the French. The Bookseller reports that outgoing French culture minister Frédéric Mitterrand has written to European Competition commissioner Joaquin Almnunia of his concern that ongoing antitrust investigations could lead to distributors such as Amazon taking unfair advantage.

Allowing publishers to fix prices has proved to be the best way of preventing a single player from imposing its economic model in the United States and Europe, and has permitted them to reduce e-book prices to levels that “reconcile the legitimate interests of the consumer and a fair remuneration for creation”, he said.

I wonder what agency-pricing publishers Mitterand has been watching? They don’t seem to bear any relation to the ones we have on this side of the Atlantic.


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