Thursday, December 22, 2005

China's copyright protectecton of online works

After a public hearing the National Copyright Administration (NCA) of China and the Ministry of Information Industry announced in May 2005 that the Administrative Measures on Internet Copyright Protection will be implemented. This means in short that ISP's have a responsibility to remove pirated works upon receipt of a complaint from a right holder. If the ISP does not comply they face administrative penalties ranging from confiscation of illegal gains of up to 100.000 RMB (source USTR 2005 report) Professor Zheng Chengsi, member of the drafting committee of the Chinese Copyright Law and many other laws, stressed the imporance of enforcement in the online world: "If the government won't take measures to fend off Internet piracies, its efforts to fight piracy in tangible markets will fail. More dealers of pirated goods will switch to the Internet because of its lax controls," said Zheng Chengsi, director of the IPR Center of the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences."

Yan Xiaohong, deputy director of NCA said, according to this very informative article by the Internet Society of China, that the State Councel has launced a draft for Policies of Protecting Internet Information Spreading Rights that will have a stronger legal effect. IP Dragon is researching what these policies entail and why their effect is stronger.

Besides, there is the draft Regulations on the Protection of Copyright Over Information Networks that has circulated for public comment. The final version is expected to be issued in 2006. The aforementioned Regulations could be seen as a step toward the accession to the WIPO internet-related treaties to the National People's Congress by June 2006.

What internet-related treaties are we talking about? WIPO Copyrights Treaty and WIPO Performances and Phonograms Treaty, read here.

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