This trial is explicitly not about what Amazon has or has not done, but it is concerned with overall competition in the ebook market. Apple should absolutely be forced to compete on a level playing field with other ebook retailers, but if the goal of antitrust law is the restoration of unrestrained competition, stringing an injunctive albatross around Apple’s corporate neck hampers that aim. I tend to agree with Judge Cote that Apple’s actions in the days leading up to the iBookstore launch were anticompetitive, but given that the settlements with the publishers put an end to the offending agreements, it’s hard to see any benefit to consumers in the DoJ’s Proposed Final Judgment.
-Adam Engst, TidBITS
Adam Engst has by far had some of the best coverage the the Apple ebook trial and I have really enjoyed his insights, and, it seems, so have the majority of the tech news. I haven’t really put in my two cents about the whole trial, but I think there are a lot of idiosyncrasies that cause me some heartburn for the ebook industry as a whole. I think the ebook market and the consumer should be where the focus currently stands and that is not what I am seeing.
My sentiment, as I stated previously on Twitter, is this: how is taking Apple out of the ebook market entirely helping competition? And how would the DoJ’s moves be helping the consumer in any way? It seems to me, the only entity the proposal helps is Amazon and they are already in a monopolistic position in the ebook market.
Did the Internet community peak at bookmarks? Asked in a different and perhaps more complete way: just as technologies like RSS and email in their purest forms are hard to beat even as technology marches forward, what better technology exists to keep track of information on the ever-expanding Internet than bookmarks? Taken a step further, what better way to share the bookmarked information than a site of your own? As such, I‘ve been reading, which is why I write now.
Working in and having a passion for libraries, I am struck by the fact that the way bookmarks work in the physical world is not directly analogous to bookmarks in the digital world. Bookmarks in the digital world are instead like dog-eared pages or highlighted passages; if you think of the Internet as a single tome, that is. In any case, anything that moves you to deface a book should probably be shared or become immortalized in some other way than just a reference for a future version of yourself.