Which Copyright Should Internet TV Operators Purchase?

Analysis on the Prohibition of Xiaomi Box and Legal Issues Concerning Internet TV

(By You Yunting) Recently, Xiaomi Tech (the “Xiaomi”), a thriving Chinese smart phone maker, released its “Xiaomi Box” (the “Box”), which enables the user to play online video on their television. Moreover, it also supports TV, games, music, and photos. Strangely, however, the Box ceased its video service under the claim of system maintenance only one week after its release.

According to some media reports (note: the link is in Chinese), the Box is a kind of set top box, and according to the rules of the State Administration of Radio, Film and Television (“SARFT”), such products must first be administratively approved before they can be used in online TV. Despite the cooperation made with WASU, other content available from Xiaomi’s box, such as video from Sohu, Tencent, PPTV, or iFeng are against Notice No. 181 issued by SARFT, which regulates that each set top box can only provide content from licensed video providers.

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Does BesTV Infringe CNTV for Broadcasting Olympic Games?

By You Yunting

In recent, CNTV, the subsidiary of China national television station (the “CCTV”), which in charge of its online business, quarreled with SMG’s BesTV (SHEX:600637) on the Olympics broadcasting. By the statement of CNTV, it owns the exclusive online broadcasting right of 2012 London Olympics in China, yet BesTV, with no license form CNTV, provided 1) the streaming of Olympic games, 2) program time-shifted playback through server storage and 3) VOD to local cooperated IPTVs, and that damages CNTV’s legal rights. So far we have heard no reply from BesTV on the accusation.

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Why the Cybercafé could be Exempted from the Liability of Pirate Video Broadcast?

By You Yunting

In the past few days, a Beijing court published a case (note: the link is in Chinese) involving a cybercafé who has purchased the Video-on-demand (VOD) system, and that made the court refuse the claims of the plaintiff though the right holder proved the piracy in the VOD.

VV8.com Company, a professional video system provider to cybercafé invested by IDG and Disney, detected the pirated TV drama against its copyright in the video system of a cybercafé. And then, the right holder filed a lawsuit against the piracy. The cybercafé afterwards argued that the system was purchased by it from Hero Inc. Company, who is a third party video provider, and in that transaction, both parties has agreed that all the copyright dispute shall be handled by Hero Inc.. Moreover, all the contents in the system are updated and ciphered by Hero Inc. with remote control, thus the cybercafé could not delete any videos in it. In the lawsuits, VV8.com expressed no intention to add Hero Inc. as the co-defendant and make no claim thereby.

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No Infringement of SONY TV’s Unauthorized Cartoon Playing

By Luo Yanjie

In our past post “How Sony Can Avoid Copyright Risk”, we gave our legal opinion in the copyright infringement charged against SONY. And in that case, SONY integrated the function of networking in a type of its TV products, by which the consumer could watch the cartoon produced by an animation company after registering its TV and the application for an account on an appointed websites under the instruction of SONY. The animation company sued SONY and the website in Beijing after detaining the infringement.

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The First Criminal Case on Internet Video Copyright Infringement in China

Highlights: to introduce the first criminal case on the internet infringement, and also the analysis on the relevant laws and regulations in China. 

As one of the biggest video websites in China, the openV.com, which claims being able to provide multi-platform VOD services through mobile phone, computer and television, has been prosecuted for criminal offenses, with the website itself and six staffs are brought to the court. OpenV has been the first video website put subject to criminal liability for unauthorized film and television works on demand services. This unprecedented case shocks the industry currently with widespread infringements, and also shows the determination to combat internet infringement of China government.

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How Sony Can Avoid Copyright Risk?

Highlights: The article analyzes the case that SONY sued for the infringing content of internet Video-On-Demand service integrated in TV set and the provisions of port principles in China Copyright Law.

It is reported that SONY (TYO: 6758, NYSE: SNE), along with a VOD website, was sued by a Chinese cartoon company (the “copyright owner”), and Beijing Dongcheng District People’s Court has accepted the suit.

As news­ reports, the copyright owner claimed that SONY integrated the internet unicast service software in certain type of its TV set. Furthermore, with SONY’s TV set instruction, the consumer could watch the content of infringing program after registering the serial number of TV online and an account with a website in sequence.

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