Stephen King Testifies In U.S. Antitrust Trial To Stop Publishing Merger

By: Brandon Williams, August 3rd, 2022 1:08 am.

Stephen King took the witness stand on Tuesday in a U.S. federal antitrust trial. He went back through his own career to demonstrate how the publishing industry has become more and more concentrated over the decades.

King was sworn in as a witness for the U.S. Department of Justice. The DOJ is attempting to convince a federal judge that the proposed merger between publishing giants Penguin Random House and Simon & Schuster would handcuff competition and hurt the careers of even the most popular authors.

King is signed to Simon & Schuster and has been for years. Prior to that, he was signed to other publishing houses that were bought out by some of the publishing giants.

The proposed acquisition of Simon & Schuster by Penguin Random House is for $2.2 billion. It would take the fourth-largest publisher in the United States and put it under the umbrella of the largest publisher – Penguin Random House. The Big Five publishers would be narrowed to four.

King feels that it is already difficult enough for authors to earn money prior to the merger. He is skeptical about the claim made by the publishers that they would still be bidding against eachother for the same books.

“You might as well say you’re going to have a husband and wife bidding against each other for the same house,” he said.

Stephen King has been working with publishers since 1967. He has won all sorts of awards, including Bram Stoker Awards, World Fantasy Awards, and British Fantasy Society Awards. King also received a World Fantasy Award for Life Achievement and was named a Grand Master by the Mystery Writers of America.

He has written in all sorts of genres, including horror, fantasy, crime, suspense, and thriller. Much of his work has been adapted to film and television, including Carrie, The Shining, Misery, The Shawshank Redemption, The Green Mile, It, and many others.

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