Wednesday, March 16, 2011

French government says publishers should collaborate over e-book negotiations

The Bookseller: "French culture minister Frederic Mitterrand has urged French publishers to speak with one voice in forthcoming negotiations with Amazon over supplying their e-books for the Kindle. During a visit to Silicon Valley, where he met senior managers of Amazon, Apple and Google, Mitterrand told reporters that if publishers go into negotiations separately, 'in disorder and a climate of permanent rivalry and competition', Amazon would 'fairly rapidly dictate its law'. Publishers should establish common rules on fixed e-book prices and other issues, he added. Referring to the recent raids of five French publishers and the publishers association (SNE) by European Commission competition officials, he said: 'I don’t think that we are in a zone of conflict or zone of difficulty between the French State and the main partners and players. ... .'" Yeah, pal, but you will be in a "zone of conflict" with the European Commission very shortly if you keep advocating the fixing of prices.