SAN FRANCISCO — The Justice Department is examining Apple’s tactics in the market for digital music, and its staff members have talked to major music labels and Internet music companies, according to several people briefed on the conversations.
The antitrust inquiry is in the early stages, these people say, and the conversations have revolved broadly around the dynamics of selling music online.
But people briefed on the inquiries also said investigators had asked in particular about recent allegations that Apple used its dominant market position to persuade music labels to refuse to give the online retailer Amazon.com exclusive access to music about to be released.
All these people spoke on condition of anonymity, citing the delicacy of the matter. Representatives from Apple and Amazon declined to comment. Gina Talamona, a deputy director at the Justice Department, also declined to comment.