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Apple Rolls Eyes at Justice Department’s E-Book Business Proposal

Apple fires back that proposed price-fixing remedy is "a draconian and punitive intrusion into Apple’s business"

The Department of Justice, which ruled in July that Apple engaged in price-fixing while making e-book deals with publishers ahead of the iPad launch, has now issued a proposed "remedy" — and Apple calls it "simply outrageous."

According to the brief, the DoJ suggests that Apple terminate its contracts with publishers Hachette, HarperCollins, MacMillan, Penguin, Simon & Schuster; allow other e-book apps to include links to their own e-bookstores; and never do this again.

Apple must also hire a full-time compliance officer to make sure it is following the law.

Also read: Judge Rules Apple Fixed E-Book Prices; Company Will Appeal

Apple responded with a brief of its own that called the proposal "a draconian and punitive intrusion into Apple’s business, wildly out of proportion to any adjudicated wrongdoing or potential harm. Plaintiffs propose a sweeping and unprecedented injunction as a tool to empower the Government to regulate Apple’s businesses and potentially affect Apple’s business relationships with thousands of partners across several markets."

The company said many of the proposal's requirements were unnecessary since the five publishers Apple was accused of colluding with had all already stopped doing so, and that the regulation of its App store was "simply outrageous."

The proposal is not yet definite; a court will meet on August 9 to discuss it further. Apple told TheWrap in July that it would appeal the ruling.