Talks between Baidu and Chinese writers collapse

Mar 25, 2011
More than 40 writers, including top-selling author Han Han, pictured here in 2010, signed a letter branding Baidu a "corrupt thief company" for providing their works as free downloads on its online library Baidu Wenku without their permission.

Negotiations to resolve a copyright dispute between search engine giant Baidu and Chinese writers have broken down with the company now facing potential court action, state media reported Friday.

More than 40 writers including top-selling author Han Han last week signed a letter branding Baidu a "corrupt thief company" for providing their works as free downloads on its Baidu Wenku without their permission.

Representatives of the writers said Thursday that talks with Baidu had collapsed after the firm rejected all their requests including a public apology and compensation for losses, the state-run News Service said.

Baidu spokesman Kaiser Kuo told AFP the company intends to address the complaints by implementing technology from mid-April that will systematically delete pirated content already uploaded on Baidu Wenku.

It also would reject future problematic uploads, he said.

"In the meantime, we have proactively opened channels to fast-track the removal of infringing content uploaded by users," he said.

Baidu Wenku was launched in 2009 and allows users to read, share or download books for free. Some books also can be purchased at a large discount from the cover price.

All documents are uploaded by and as of November Baidu Wenku had stockpiled more than 10 million files and books, accounting for 70 percent of China's online file-sharing market, according to the company's figures.

Zhang Hongbo, deputy general-director of the government-linked China Written Works Copyright Society, said the group had been collecting evidence of Baidu's and would take legal action, the China News Service reported.

The report did not give a timetable.

Zhang also said the society's evidence would be submitted to copyright authorities for possible investigation, the report added.

Chinese Web search giant Baidu's headoffice in Beijing. Negotiations to resolve a copyright dispute between search engine giant Baidu and Chinese writers have broken down with the company now facing potential court action, state media reported Friday.

The society has levelled similar accusations against , Baidu's main rival in the China market, in late 2009 for scanning Chinese books into its online library.

But that dispute appears to have been left in limbo after Google reduced its presence in China last year over a censorship dispute with the government.

Baidu has long been criticised for flouting intellectual property rights. Its MP3 search service, which provides links to free but often pirated music downloads, has drawn particular fire from the recording industry.

The US Trade Representative's office last month named as one of the world's top marketplaces for pirated and counterfeit goods.

Explore further: WEF unveils 'crowdsourcing' push on how to run the Web

add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

Chinese writers accuse Baidu of stealing

Mar 16, 2011

Dozens of popular Chinese writers have accused search engine giant Baidu of infringing their copyright and branded it a "thief" in the latest claims of piracy against the company.

China's Baidu search engine launches English blog

Jan 11, 2011

Chinese search engine giant Baidu has launched an English-language blog on the country's online culture, a company spokesman said Tuesday, as the firm looks to expand into overseas markets.

Baidu edges ahead in Chinese online market

Jan 19, 2011

Search engine Baidu further strengthened its dominance of the Chinese Internet market in the fourth quarter at the expense of US rival Google, a research firm said Wednesday.

Baidu decision a win for IPR

Jul 21, 2005

Intellectual-property rights scored a small victory Wednesday when state media reported Baidu.com, a Chinese search engine, agreed to remove links to sites selling pirated music.

Chinese paper accuses Google of hampering searches

Oct 27, 2009

(AP) -- Google Inc. faces a new controversy in China after a Web site run by the Communist Party's main newspaper accused the U.S. search giant of trying to keep Internet users away following its reports ...

Recommended for you

'SwaziLeaks' looks to shake up jet-setting monarchy

3 hours ago

As WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange prepares to end a two-year forced stay at Ecuador's London embassy, he may take comfort in knowing he inspired resistance to secrecy in places as far away as Swaziland.

Ecuador heralds 'digital currency' plans

3 hours ago

Ecuador is planning to create the world's first government-issued digital currency, which some analysts believe could be a first step toward abandoning the country's existing currency, the U.S. dollar, which ...

WEF unveils 'crowdsourcing' push on how to run the Web

17 hours ago

The World Economic Forum unveiled a project on Thursday aimed at connecting governments, businesses, academia, technicians and civil society worldwide to brainstorm the best ways to govern the Internet.

Study: Social media users shy away from opinions

Aug 26, 2014

People on Facebook and Twitter say they are less likely to share their opinions on hot-button issues, even when they are offline, according to a surprising new survey by the Pew Research Center.

US warns shops to watch for customer data hacking

Aug 23, 2014

The US Department of Homeland Security on Friday warned businesses to watch for hackers targeting customer data with malicious computer code like that used against retail giant Target.

User comments : 0