Video sites set off copyright war

15:38, January 05, 2012        

  China's two largest video sites Tudou and Youku recently accused each other of infringement and claimed hundreds of millions for damages. The claim made a record high in domestic network video industry.

  On December 16, Tudou and Taiwan CtiTV jointly held a press conference, saying that Youku deliberately broadcasted “Kangxi Coming” and other hot programs for nearly one month, while Tudou enjoyed the exclusive copyrights for these programs. Tudou announced that it will claim for 150 million yuan and report to relevant government departments.

  Youku launched a subsequent hit back, saying that hundreds of movies, TV series, shows and original videos were pirated by Tudou. Youku filed prosecution against Tudou in Beijing and Shanghai, Tudou claimed for over one hundred million yuan according to the market price of the copyrights.

  In the industry view, purchase and protection of copyright have become the core strategy for expending video market. The copyright war between Tudou and Youku is in fact the fight for market position and market share.

  Insider pointed out that domestic video site is still in the early stage of rapid growth, and copyright issues have become the key issue plaguing the industry. Shanghai, taking over 70% video market share in the country, set up the first industry association for new audio-visual media on December 13 to promote industry regulation and self-discipline including copyright protection.

  Unfortunately, Tudou is a member of the association but Youku is not, so that the association can’t give full play to its role in this dispute. Therefore, it is imperative to establish a national-wide, cross-regional trade association for new media.

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