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Polygram Holding, Inc. v. Federal Trade Commission

United States Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit
416 F.3d 29 (2005)


Facts

The Three Tenors put on extremely popular concerts in 1990, 1994, and 1998. PolyGram Holding, Inc. (PolyGram) (defendant) distributed the recording of the 1990 concert, and Warner Communications, Inc. (Warner) (defendant) distributed the recording of the 1994 concert. PolyGram and Warner signed an agreement to distribute the recording of the 1998 concert jointly. The companies also agreed to a moratorium on any advertising or discounting of recordings of the 1990 and 1994 concerts in order to prevent recordings of the older concerts from eating into sales of the 1998 recording. The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) (plaintiff) brought an enforcement action against PolyGram and Warner and found that moratorium agreement violated antitrust law. PolyGram and Warner appealed the FTC’s order, arguing that the agreement benefitted the long-term sales prospects of recordings of all three concerts.

Rule of Law

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Issue

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Holding and Reasoning (Ginsburg, C.J.)

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  • A "yes" or "no" answer to the question framed in the issue section;
  • A summary of the majority or plurality opinion, using the CREAC method; and
  • The procedural disposition (e.g. reversed and remanded, affirmed, etc.).

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