Court advises IPR cases be made public
2014-April-24 Source: China Daily Website
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Making trials of important and influential intellectual property lawsuits public is a way to improve Chinese IP studies and strengthen such protection, according to judges in Guangdong province.

Guangdong has dealt with the most IP cases in the past year in China, including disputes involving well-known foreign and national enterprises, said Chen Guojin, chief judge of the Provincial High People's Court.

The court held a seminar on Wednesday to highlight the key IP lawsuits it heard in the last year, to increase awareness that Chinese companies protect IP rights and publicize how judges tackle related cases, Chen said.

In November, a dispute of unfair competition between two Chinese Internet giants, Qihoo 360 and Tencent, aroused public attention, especially when it was appealed to the Supreme People's Court. The case was first heard at Guangdong.

Zhang Xuejun, the judge overseeing the dispute, said during the seminar that the core of the lawsuit was whether antivirus programs on Qihoo 360 had the right to block online advertisements from Tencent.

While rejecting advertisements from Tencent, Qihoo 360 also asked computer users not to use Tencent products, saying the companies' software had security loopholes and could steal users' online privacy, Zhang said.

"Tencent later sued Qihoo 360 for unfair competition at our court. Such an online dispute related to IP rights was a new type of lawsuit, as it seldom happened before," she said, adding the suit brought challenges for the court.

After investigation, the court found Tencent users were invited to transfer to Qihoo 360 while it blocked Tencent services, "which caused a judgment that Qihoo 360 did unfair competition and business discrediting," she said.

"The original verdict was kept after it was sent to China's top court and I think it will be an example for other anti-virus programs in the future," she added.

To educate more companies on how to protect their rights online and avoid similar disputes, the top court and provincial court heard the case in public, Chen said.

"The disclosure of such typical cases is also clearer to show how current laws tackle IP cases," Chen added.

Editor: 张莹
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