According to a report from Fortune on the Apple e-book pricing case, the tone of the case has turned to Amazon. How so? Well, Amazon’s Russell Grandinetti took the stand, and when Apple’s lawyers got to question him, some interesting things were revealed. Something that Apple has been trying to prove in this case is that it is not the only company that negotiated price matching in its contracts with the publishers, and in fact, that is what was proved from Grandinetti’s statements:
It was when Grandinetti described those negotiations that the tenor of the trial changed. Apple’s defense team could hardly contain their glee as attorney Howard Heiss, in sometimes combative questioning, got Grandinetti to describe the terms of those contracts.
They were, point by point, the same terms Apple had negotiated — terms the government had described two days earlier as “a deliberate scheme orchestrated by Apple to fix prices” and which were voided last year as part of the publishers’ settlements of the changes against them.
Basically, Amazon began to renegotiate its contract the day after the iPad was announced, and the terms set forth in the new ones were almost identical to that of the one Apple had established. The key part was when Grandinetti said that Amazon “would not sign without price parity,” something the US Justice Department was planning to use against Apple. This certainly has the power to make or break this case, and Grandinetti takes the stand again today, so stay tuned for anything else of note.
What do you think? Does this show that Apple was only doing what any other company would do? Let us know in the comments, or tweet me @TiP_Kyle.