Apple fires back at DOJ with actual e-mail from Jobs

The Justice Department presents a draft e-mail it says proves collusion on e-book prices, but Apple responds with e-mail it says was actually sent that contained different content and tone.

After the Justice Department presented an e-mail Wednesday that appeared to undermine Apple's e-book antitrust defense, the company submitted the actual e-mail as sent by then-CEO Steve Jobs to Eddy Cue, showing content and tone that differed from the draft version.

Apple, which is accused of conspiring with book publishers to fix e-book prices, has maintained that it was uninterested in the pricing models used by publishers in deals with other retailers. The Justice Department submitted a terse e-mail sent by Jobs to Cue, who oversees all of Apple's digital stores and its Web services, that it said proved Apple wanted to force Amazon to adopt the agency model favored by Apple:

However, Apple lawyers fired back later in the day, calling that e-mail an unsent draft and presenting what it said was the actual e-mail that Jobs sent, without the language suggesting that publishers needed to force Amazon toward the agency model.

The Justice Department is trying to prove to the court that Apple was the ringleader in a scheme to push book publishers toward raising their prices by enforcing an agency model in which publishers set their own e-book prices, rather than the traditional wholesale model in which publishers set a retail price and retailers set their own sales price.

The trial is scheduled to continue Thursday with the scheduled testimony of Cue.

 

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