Taking on a tech giant in Amazon’s shadow The decision In April 2010, five of the largest book publishers in the United States simultaneously attained a long-sought goal. They converted the industry’s “whole- sale” e-book distribution model, where retailers set consumer prices, to an “agency” model where publishers set prices. The move immediately did away with Amazon’s “hated” (as one publisher put it) $9.99 pricing of The New York Times’ bestsellers list and new releases of other popular e-book titles. Kindle users saw many Amazon e-book prices jump overnight from $9.99 to $12.99 or $14.99 (and in some cases even higher). So did state and federal antitrust enforcement agencies.