Apple loses another copyright lawsuit in China: Xinhua

SHANGHAI Fri Dec 28, 2012 8:30am EST

A security guard stands next to an Apple retail store during the release of the iPhone 5 in Shanghai December 14, 2012. REUTERS/Carlos Barria

A security guard stands next to an Apple retail store during the release of the iPhone 5 in Shanghai December 14, 2012.

Credit: Reuters/Carlos Barria

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SHANGHAI (Reuters) - A Chinese court has fined Apple Inc 1 million yuan ($160,400) for hosting third-party applications on its App Store that were selling pirated electronic books, the official Xinhua news agency reported on Friday.

Apple is to pay compensation to eight Chinese writers and two companies for violating their copyrights, the Beijing No.2 Intermediate People's Court ruled on Thursday, Xinhua said.

Earlier in the year, a group of Chinese authors filed the suit against Apple, saying an unidentified number of apps on its App Store sold unlicensed copies of their books. The group of eight authors was seeking 10 million yuan in damages.

"We are disappointed at the judgment. Some of our best-selling authors only got 7,000 yuan. The judgment is a signal of encouraging piracy," Bei Zhicheng, a spokesman for the group, told Reuters.

Apple said in a statement that it takes copyright infringement complaints "very seriously".

"We're always updating our service to better assist content owners in protecting their rights," Apple spokeswoman Carolyn Wu said.

China has the world's largest Internet and mobile market by number of users, but piracy costs software companies billions of dollars each year.

Apple, whose products enjoy great popularity in China, has faced a string of legal headaches this year. In July, Apple paid 60 million yuan to a Chinese firm, Proview Technology, to settle a long-running lawsuit over the iPad trademark in China.

($1 = 6.2360 Chinese yuan)

(Reporting by Shanghai Newsroom and Melanie Lee; Editing by Kazunori Takada and Matt Driskill)

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Comments (8)
wthcares wrote:
China, the Cradle of Piracy whining about the acts they perfected?!

Dec 28, 2012 7:41am EST  --  Report as abuse
WJL wrote:
Why did Apple contest the suit in the first place? It should have offered at least 30 million yuan when the piracy was brought to its attention. You just cannot trust Americans who do not even follow their own laws but insist that all others do so.

Dec 28, 2012 5:58pm EST  --  Report as abuse
EthicsIntl wrote:
Apple & all mega international corporations have partnered, long time ago, with the Chinese and all crony governments, including our own, in raping the consumers & small business, world-wide. We, the consumers are to blame for all this, we are buying their products like there is no tomorrow.

Dec 28, 2012 8:57pm EST  --  Report as abuse
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