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Tuesday, January 15, 2008

Only in France...
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.. would free shipping for books be illegal! According to this IHT story, the French impose limits on price discounts for books in the form of restrictions on free shipping on book purchases. Amazon is apparently fighting the law. Good for them. Here's the beginning of the story...

The online retailer Amazon.com said Monday that it would pay €1,000 a day in fines, rather than comply with a court ruling upholding French limits on price discounts for books. The company decided to pay the daily fine worth $1,500 rather than eliminate its offer of free shipping on book purchases, said Xavier Garambois, director of Amazon's French subsidiary.

"We are determined to follow every avenue available to us to overturn this law," Garambois said. The company appealed the ruling Friday. Jeff Bezos, founder and chief executive of the company, based in Seattle, was equally defiant in a weekend e-mail message to French customers. "As unbelievable as it appears, the free delivery of Amazon.fr is threatened," he wrote in the French-language note. "France would be the only country in the world where the free delivery practiced by Amazon would be declared illegal," the Bezos e-mail concluded, inviting consumers to sign an online petition. By Monday evening, more than 120,000 people had clicked in favor of maintaining free delivery.

posted by Adam Thierer @ 12:42 PM | Generic Rant

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