More Proof The Big Six Of Publishing Are Run By Morons

The PDF of Judge Cote’s ruling [direct PDF link] is filled with comedy gold. You really couldn’t make this stuff up.

Dig it:

1) They let Eddy Cue set the deadline
2) They bought Cue’s “once-in-a-lifetime” schtick
3) They let Apple set price caps
4) They let Apple back them into a corner with MFN
5) They all wound up collapsing like cards and settling

Did any of them ever stop to think?


1) What the hell was the rush? Had the iPad been introduced without an iBookstore, big deal! In fact, it would have been better for all of them to tell Cue to shove his deadline. They could have demanded their own Apple event for the iBookstore.

2) It was never “once-in-a-lifetime.” How stupid can they be? Do they believe TV infomercials too? The only “lifetime” being factored in was the expiration of Steve Jobs. And when it comes to the rolling roads of business, no single person matters, period.

3) Yes, Apple knew it couldn’t sell eBooks at $18.99. But why force that on those imbeciles? Let them sit there with no sales in the iBookstore. Why was Apple in a rush? Because Steve Jobs was dying? Since when is an impending death the basis of any sound business decision? What the hell would Jobs care about any illegality? He’d be dead. Had Apple let them hang themselves, it would have worked to Apple’s advantage and eBooks would have dropped in price for everybody. And Apple still would have made money.

4) They could conspire to be bamboozled by Apple but they couldn’t conspire to kill the MFN? What is wrong with those people?

5) They all deserved to collapse and settle. Such stupidity requires punishment.

Now some excerpts from the PDF (I will be skipping around and not providing page numbers; keep up!).


Apple didn’t want to have to compete. Imagine that! A group of well-paid people who have no guts for business. They just wanted to sit back, turn a handle, and Ka-Ching!, collect money with no effort. Isn’t that what welfare queens are accused of doing?

Our first comedy gold:


Orwell could have been proud of that inversion of “competition.”

Two more comedy gold bits. First:


The math pros of the Big Six crunched the numbers and revealed this agreement would cost all of them money. Yet they still went ahead with it! If that isn’t being a moron, I don’t know what the hell is!



Imagine Grandinetti saying this: “Wait. You want to increase the price so you can make less money per unit — and you want to sell fewer units too?” Grandinetti must have wondered if he was dealing with an elaborate practical joke. Or: Morons!

And what was the inevitable result of this massive thinking by the Big Six? This:


What the hell kind of business counts as a victory the diminution of its profits? This is like it’s out of the Bizarro World manual of business:

In one episode, for example, a salesman is doing a brisk trade selling Bizarro bonds: “Guaranteed to lose money for you”.

Where are all of the shareholders to oust these bozos before they sink their companies completely?

If you need more proof of the Big Six leadership being a bunch of morons, just look at this delusional thinking:


Penguin, that pack of brain-dead morons who think a diagram of a cow “enriches” an eBook, thinking they can get $18.99 at some point in the future for what amounts to a tarted-up text file! (And if you clicked through that link, I have long since changed my mind. I’d get The Jungle as a free PDF file from Google Books these days. Tablets have changed the entire book game that much. Do they even understand that at the Big Six?)

Another bit of comedy gold, and this is just breathtakingly epic for its stupidity:


Big-talking he-man Sargent of Macmillian running to Apple to conspire even more — on Macmillan’s contract with Amazon! I told you at the beginning of this post that you can’t make this up.

And here is why the work of the DoJ isn’t finished:


That’s an abuse of power. No company should have that power. I will repeat my position for those who are late to this shindig or who haven’t been paying attention: No device should be locked to any single store. When I buy a device, I own it. That device is not a colony being established by Apple, Amazon, Google, Sony or any other company. How long do we have to wait for business law and legislation to catch up to these abusive, monopolistic practices — and to end them?

I close on a final note of comedy gold:


Can you even imagine that? A tough-talking guy who heads a company that is usually thought of a “big” being afraid of being laughed at!

Hey, Sargent! Either buy a pair or see a doctor — you just might have “low-T.”

This is all jaw-droppingly amazing. If any of these companies are still in business five years hence with the majority share of trade publishing, it won’t be due to any of them doing something right. It will be by sheer luck on a scale never before seen in the history of business.


Filed under Apple: The Company, eBooks: General, Fraud, Pricing, Stupid

11 responses to “More Proof The Big Six Of Publishing Are Run By Morons

  1. RicDay

    Buckminster Fuller: “Belief is when someone else does the thinking.”

    These morons _wanted_ to believe.

    • mikecane

      Wow. That’s a great quote. Having screwed writers for ages, you’d think they’d know how NOT to get screwed.

  2. David Stewart

    I’m not sure that it qualifies as moronic to take a short-term hit for a better long-term outcome. Actually, the real morons tend be the ones who fail to do that and take a short-term benefit at the expense of long-term gains.

  3. StanTheMan

    Good article!  There is zero likelihood that a company (Apple) with a 0% market share in the retail book market could have forced/pressured publishers to do anything that would damage their relationship with Amazon, which both then and now is the #1 retailer of books.

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  7. Shock Me

    Oh well, now at least Amazon has an entrenched competitor in e-books.

    • mikecane

      People also forget Google and Kobo. Neither one is going away.

      • Shock Me

        The fact that both are so easily forgotten is going to prove to be a problem I should think. Although Google has cash to burn it wouldn’t be the first time they’ve shelved something that was popular. Then again they might try to undercut Amazon by giving books away after paying the publisher.

      • mikecane

        In Google’s case, they could slap ads in books.

        As for Kobo, it has the fat wallet of Rakuten and many international markets, making its dependency on the American market less acute than that of B&N.

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