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Labels Accused of Digi Price Fixing

THE FIX IS IN: The  Supreme Court refused to block a suit against the Big Four accusing them of conspiring to fix the prices of digital tracks. The majors failed to convince the court that the allegations in the consumer complaint weren’t sufficient to suggest the companies engaged in misconduct. A N.Y. federal appeals court ruled the allegations were enough for the case to go forward, and the Supreme Court affirmed that decision. The original complaint was filed against MusicNet and PressPlay, both launched in 2001 by the majors to sell songs online. The complaint alleges these early services charged “unreasonably” high rates—up to $240 a year in subscription fees—and imposed unwarranted restrictions, including barring customers from moving tracks onto their iPods and other players. We kid you not, and yes, it does sound like something dreamed up by The Onion. But that's how absolutely clueless the labels were a decade ago. (1/10p)

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