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Fixed E-book Prices: Can it Lead to Piracy?

Written on March 08, 2011 by Japhet Writ

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There's no paper, no binding, no shipping, no storage necessary for an e-book. So why the higher price? Can the "agency price model" do something about it, or will it make more way to piracy?

Last week, Random House took a go for the “agency price model”. This move will enable publishers to bring their books into Apple iBookstore, giving customers a more complete e-book catalog to shop. However, a more complete e-book catalog doesn’t contain a lot of price variation.

In fact, the agency price model allows publishers to set their book pricing rather than the retailer. In addition to this, investigators are on their way to Europe to determine whether this move can constitute price-fixing and illegal cartel. In case it is, it will somehow be a no brainer.

The lack of differentiation between publisher is not what makes customer frustrated. It’s that the price for e-books is often more expensive than other book formats like paper back. Hence, other consumer tends to lead to torrent files.

In your own opinion, does a fixed e-book pricing can really lead to piracy?

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