Newspaper reports now confirm what any record buyer already knows: The much- ballyhooed order by the Federal Trade Commission to major labels to stop fixing CD prices not only hasn’t lowered them one penny, it hasn’t stopped the "coincidental" multi-label creep of superstar product to the $18.98 level. On June 6, Colin Hand of Seattle’s Up Records hit the Internet to add that "it’s fairly clear that it’s the chain stores who are the ones responsible for any price fixing, or overcharging of the consumer .The problem is that chain stores, such as Tower, will take our ‘list price’ of $12.98 and mark it up to $16.98. Our distributor tells us we should raise our prices, because the stores are ‘doing it anyway.’ .As a label, we’d like to offer our releases at what we believe is a fair price. Chain stores aren’t allowing us to do that. If prices were not being fixed, I would be able to walk into Tower and pick up one of our releases for $11.98-$13.98 (Tower has them priced $14.98-$17.98). There is a similar situation with the online ‘discount’ retailers. They bump our ‘list price’ to whatever they want, and then ‘discount’ it to a price that is still above our suggested ‘list price.’"
[from Rock & Rap Confidential/2000]
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