It's been discussed almost daily here. Here's a search that will give you some threads to check out:
Bottom line: five of the 'Big 6' publishers set the selling prices for their e-books. They set the prices based on what people will pay, not on cost relative to paper books.
Also, for older titles it takes a fair amount of work to scan, proofread, correct, and produce an e-book.
@juliesbooks - welcome to the B&N boards!
I agree that eBook prices do seem to be higher than I expected at this moment. I feel that the price is based on the many discussions in these boards regarding the Agency Model, the “newness” of the format (think early DVD prices), and the willingness of the consumer to pay those prices. In time and with the abolishment of the Agency Model - they will drop down.
I also believe that the choice as to me purchasing “at these prices” is really a personal decision and one that each individual consumer must decide on their own. My pain point on an eBook’s price will not always be the same as that of another consumer. Unlike fuel and milk, eBooks are a luxury item to me. I can go to the local library and pick up the physical (and sometimes the eBook) for free for 21 days.
Personally, I’ll let the state Attorney Generals fight the Agency Model and continue to e-mail my representatives, publishers, and authors about my concerns regarding the Agency Model’s result of “price setting.” Until then, for me each eBook purchase is an individual decision of my want over my needs.