Penguin finally settles with EU over e-book pricing

The book publisher will terminate agency contracts and will no longer adopt "most favored nation" pricing clauses.

James Martin/CNET

Penguin, the last major holdout in the antitrust probe involving Apple and publishers over e-book pricing, is now in line with its competitors.

The European Union's European Commission announced on Thursday that it has approved conditions it agreed to with Penguin in April . The book publisher agreed to terminate agency agreements that allow a publisher, not a retailer, to set prices on titles, as well as end the "most favored nation" pricing clauses that offered different prices based on location.

Penguin and the European Commission's agreement comes after other book publishers, including Harper Collins and Hachette, agreed to essentially the same terms back in December. Penguin was conspicuously missing from that deal and has consistently said that it did nothing wrong.

The case relates to alleged e-book price fixing on the part of Apple and book publishers that drove prices up and hurt Amazon's e-book business.

About the author

Don Reisinger is a technology columnist who has covered everything from HDTVs to computers to Flowbee Haircut Systems. Besides his work with CNET, Don's work has been featured in a variety of other publications including PC World and a host of Ziff-Davis publications.

 

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