As you may have noticed, the courts in the USA have declared that the Agency Model, which was a system in which publishers set the selling price of ebooks, is illegal as it is a form of price fixing.
Note added later:
If you read to the end of this post you will find a comment from Rich Adin, in which he corrects several mistakes on my part in this post. I thought briefly of deleting the post, as I saw no benefit to anyone in a post with incorrect information, but then I thought again, and decided to leave it up as Rich gives a pretty good breakdown of what that legal decision actually means…..
So please do read what he has written as well as what I have written.
For us consumers this is obviously good news as it means that ebook sellers are now free to set the prices of the ebooks they sell us at whatever level they wish.
What this means in practice is that ebook sellers who wish it, can now happily sell ebooks to us at prices below the price they pay to the publishers for these ebooks.
You might well wonder why on earth any company would want to sell us ebooks at a loss, a reasonable question. Obviously most book sellers wouldn’t even consider doing this, but the big volume sellers can afford to do this – for a while at any rate.