Rent Seekers and Other Strange Parasites

Have you received any emails or letters claiming you as part of a class-action lawsuit? I get about three a years and it is usually about as pointless of this crime here:

If you purchased an Apple iTunes gift card, you could get benefits under a class action settlement.

A proposed settlement of a class action lawsuit could affect you if you purchased an Apple iTunes gift card and the card or packaging to which it was attached contained language that “songs are 99¢” or other language indicating that songs are priced at 99¢ (referred to as a “99¢ iTunes gift card” in the rest of this Notice).

Why yes, I probably did buy an iTunes gift card that said Songs are 99¢. So what’s the problem officer?

The lawsuit claimed that Apple advertised, distributed, and sold 99¢ iTunes gift cards. It further alleged that in April 2009, Apple raised the price of certain songs at the iTunes Store from 99¢ to $1.29 and that 99¢ iTunes gift card holders who purchased $1.29 songs were overcharged. Apple denies all allegations and has asserted many defenses.

Good Lord man! Kudos to the eagle-eyed lawyers who vigilantly guard my well being against corporate fascists. To think that Apple would cleverly work a 30¢ scam into an innocuous “promotion” then manipulate space-time where prices would rise in the future. I feel like you’re the handsome Superman who just rushed to the scene and saved my virtue from a would be rapist.

The settlement will provide you a $3.25 iTunes Store credit if you purchased or received a 99¢ iTunes gift card and used it to purchase one or more $1.29 songs from the iTunes Store on or before May 10, 2010.

Oh. Well thank you anyway, lawyer people for taking up the banner of Justice and righting a $3.25 cent wrong. I’m sure you got the same $3.25 reward from this and you’re cool with that because it was about doing the right thing.

Did Apple actually do anything malicious or illegal in this case?

Apple denies all allegations and has asserted many defenses. The parties are entering into this settlement to avoid burdensome and costly litigation. The settlement is not an admission of wrong-doing or an indication that any law was violated.

In another era, one might call this a protection racket. But Apple is an evil corporation (OK, I’ll concede this one) and “the people” get a free trinket. So it’s A-OK!

UPDATE iOwnTheWorld makes the connection between slimy lawyers and Democrats.

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