The high-profile infringement case between the Writers Rights League (WRL) and Apple has new progress. On March 16, the National Copyright Administration of China (NCAC) announced that the Apple's App store is suspected of infringing rights of the Chinese writers and offered its support to them.
Meanwhile, another collecting society, China Written Works Copyright Society (CWWCS) has launched a hotline dedicated to take complaints against Apple from writers.
Apple refuses to comment
"As an IPR-laden company, Apple understands the importance of IPR protection. Apple will give timely and appropriate response when receiving such complaint", said Ms. Huang Apple China's PR executive in her message to media outlets.
"They say the matter is now in the hands of their US headquarters, and no one from China can say anything. They tell us to wait patiently for calls from lawyers sent by the company", said WRL representative Bei Zhicheng. "Apple must remove infringing content for free download and avoid such action to develop", said Bei. WRL claims they have not yet received direct response from Apple.
"The court has taken the case, and we are waiting for the court hearing, which is expected in the second half of this year", said Wang Guohua, an attorney representing WRL in this case.
When approached by CIP News, Apple attorney said she is not in the position to reveal anything without the authorization from the company. Further questions shall be addressed to Apple HQ.
WRL wins support
"As much as our knowledge is, the App Store does appear to include doubtful pirated content. But the final call has to be made following protocol", said a NCAC principal.
CWWCS said that it is gathering evidence right now and enforce its right with government support in due time. Writers and publishers may send their complaints through two hotlines, email and its Sina Weibo account.
"Enforcing right in a class action save writers money and trouble in gathering evidence. More writers and publishers may share enforcement outcomes through such efficient action", said Zhang Hongbo, deputy director general of CWWCS.
Back to the WRL case, 22 writers join forces to chase down Apple for infringing their 95 works. "WRL has filed another lawsuit against Apple to Beijing No.2 Intermediate People's Court in February, seeking over 11 million yuan in damages", said Bei Zhicheng.
(China IP News)