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Old Mar 29, 2013, 09:25 AM   #1
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Apple Hit With $530,000 Chinese Lawsuit Over Unauthorized Sales of Animated Films




M.I.C. Gadget reports that Apple has been hit with a new lawsuit in China, with the state-owned Shanghai Animation Film Studio claiming that Apple has permitted sales of its movies without authorization. Given that Apple does not directly sell audio or video content through the iTunes Store in China, it appears that the issue relates to the films being made available through third-party App Store apps.
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Shanghai Animation Film Studio, China's first and official animation factory, sued Apple for hosting applications containing unlicensed versions of their works on its App Store that were available for download, demanding a total compensation of 3.3 million yuan (around $530,000 USD) from Apple for violating the copyrights of their 110 works.
The South China Morning Post has more on the situation, noting that Apple declined to comment and that officials from the animation studio made only a brief statement about the matter.
Quote:
"We want to keep tight-lipped on this case because, as we see it, it's just a litigation in which we want to get compensation [for our product]," said an official from the Shanghai studio. "It's a sensitive period now since Apple is a big multinational company and it is surrounded by controversies on its practices in China."
The lawsuit is the latest in a long line of legal troubles for Apple in China, which includes a patent lawsuit over Siri that gained news earlier this week and a case late last year in which Apple lost an $82,000 judgment over unauthorized sales of a Chinese encyclopedia through the App Store. The highest-profile case in China has been the dispute over the "iPad" trademark in the country, with Apple agreeing to a $60 million settlement in that case last year.

Article Link: Apple Hit With $530,000 Chinese Lawsuit Over Unauthorized Sales of Animated Films
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Old Mar 29, 2013, 09:28 AM   #2
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So piracy-land is complaining about unauthorized sales?
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Old Mar 29, 2013, 09:28 AM   #3
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Another nonsense lawsuit, how can Apple be responsible what a 3rd party company includes in their Apps or devices, like the casing lawsuit.
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Old Mar 29, 2013, 09:29 AM   #4
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What the hell? Theres a new lawsuit everyday.
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Old Mar 29, 2013, 09:29 AM   #5
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I must be living in Bizarro-universe.
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Old Mar 29, 2013, 09:30 AM   #6
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Eventually Apple will do the math, and stop selling any iPhoes/iPads in China.
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Old Mar 29, 2013, 09:32 AM   #7
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Any bets on how this will end?
Let's have a separate rumor site for APPLE free-for-alls, err.... lawsuits
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Old Mar 29, 2013, 09:33 AM   #8
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530,000? Pocket change.
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Old Mar 29, 2013, 09:34 AM   #9
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Can there just be a "Legal/Financial" section that would cover the more business-oriented stories? I really like the writing at this site, but couldn't care less about the lawsuit stories.
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Old Mar 29, 2013, 09:37 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Killerbob View Post
Eventually Apple will do the math, and stop selling any iPhoes/iPads in China.
China is projected to be the biggest market for smartphones very soon.
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Old Mar 29, 2013, 09:39 AM   #11
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Originally Posted by Killerbob View Post
Eventually Apple will do the math, and stop selling any iPhoes/iPads in China.
Yeah, stop selling to the most populated country in the world... righhhtt....
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Old Mar 29, 2013, 09:39 AM   #12
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At first I thought how Apple could be responsible for this, but regardless they do make a 30% profit out of selling these apps. So if they're selling something that's copyrighted, even unknowingly, then wouldn't they have to pay back that money?
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Old Mar 29, 2013, 09:45 AM   #13
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This is nothing but a shakedown for a Chinese mobster for a payout from Apple.

They should be suing the company that stole the copyrighted works from them in the first place and posted them on to the iTunes store under false pretenses, but that is probably a dummy corporation run by the Chinese Government with no chance of ever paying out on a claim.

It is funny how we are seeing more and more Chinese companies crying foul of copyright laws now, given China's record of pirating and bootlegging everything from entire Apple stores, music, movies all the way down to lead laced toys and toothpaste and every imaginable product in between.

And as far as this ludicrous statement:
"It's a sensitive period now since Apple is a big multinational company and it is surrounded by controversies on its practices in China."
What controversies?

Apple is one of the most transparent companies on Earth when it comes to their policies on workers in China, which in itself is a big deal considering that Apple is so secret about everything else. You don't see Nike, Dell, Samsung or any other 'big multinational company' open up like Apple has on their workforce policies.

Lets see this studios for this animation company, its probably entirely run on slave labor working in prison camp conditions.
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Old Mar 29, 2013, 09:46 AM   #14
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I wonder if Apple is eventually going to have to require additional proof that third parties selling content on the App Store actually have the rights, especially in China (seems to be where the most problems are). Since they review app submissions, is this already part of the process or needs to be added? Perhaps those submitting would need to agree to assume liability if they are found not to be the rights holder. Not being a developer, I don't know if any of this is already in their agreements.
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Old Mar 29, 2013, 09:48 AM   #15
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Hah. I've seen the cartoon in the OP. My mother-in-law (Yeah, from Shanghai) plays it for my daughter. It's hilariously brutal, (Imagine a cat shooting a Mouse's ear off and there's actually blood with the mouse holding his hand to his head.) and has the most asinine moral bent I've ever seen in children's programming.

I remember walking in, seeing some of it, and thinking, "Is anyone else disturbed by all this?"

I wish I could figure out the English name, I'd watch it on Youtube all day. ^_^
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Old Mar 29, 2013, 09:50 AM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MadDawg2020 View Post
They should be suing the company that stole the copyrighted works from them in the first place and posted them on to the iTunes store under false pretenses, but that is probably a dummy corporation run by the Chinese Government with no chance of ever paying out on a claim.
I actually thought about that too!

Quote:
Originally Posted by MadDawg2020 View Post
And as far as this ludicrous statement:
"It's a sensitive period now since Apple is a big multinational company and it is surrounded by controversies on its practices in China."
What controversies?
The ones the Chinese propaganda machine is trying to bring about regarding Apple's warranty coverage in China vs the rest of the world. There have been several stories on it recently.
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Old Mar 29, 2013, 09:51 AM   #17
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large corporations are already pulling out of China and moving to Mexico where the labor rate has actually, for the first time, fallen below that in China. besides labor costs being substantially lower, shipping costs would be lower, and Apple would benefit greatly from the NAFTA perks

the party of cheap labor is starting to fizzle out as China has a fast growing middle class that is demanding fair wages, time off, and benefits for their families. look at the Labor rates in China in 2002 vs 2012. their labor rates have jumped the most of any country in the world

it would be a huge undertaking, but i highly suggest Apple pulls out of China ASAP. Apple has the cash to make a new start in Mexico and they wouldn't be starting from scratch as Mexico already has a well formed electronics manufacturing hub (several Blackberry models are made there). i just see China becomes more and more of a nuisance to Apple and other domestic companies looking to manufacture their products at lower costs. eventually the labor rates will have jumped so much and there will be a breaking point where Apple and others are unwilling to put up with the "crap" so to speak. Foxconn has already been a thorn in Apple's back with regards to labor rights, working conditions, etc. Mexico in 2012, believe it or not, has better labor laws and a lower labor rate to boot. it would be better PR for Apple. heck, maybe we can bus US citizens on Mexican work visas to work in the Mexican factory. LOLOL

Last edited by Medic311; Mar 29, 2013 at 10:01 AM.
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Old Mar 29, 2013, 09:53 AM   #18
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Perhaps Apple should sue China itself for sheltering so many blatant copycats and ripoff artists.
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Old Mar 29, 2013, 09:54 AM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Killerbob View Post
Eventually Apple will do the math, and stop selling any iPhoes/iPads in China.
Every other smartphone manufacturer would be very happy with less competition..

Additionally, scalpers would be over joyed as well, selling Apple mobile devices at huge inflated prices. Something that would give Apple negative press.
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Old Mar 29, 2013, 09:54 AM   #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by UnfetteredMind View Post
I actually thought about that too!



The ones the Chinese propaganda machine is trying to bring about regarding Apple's warranty coverage in China vs the rest of the world. There have been several stories on it recently.
I agree completely. A state owned studio does not need the $530,000. This is peanuts to them. This is all about smearing the Apple name in China which is worth a lot more money to the state owned products and services that compete or will compete against Apple now and in the future. They probably have been unsuccessful in stealing the iOS source code like they did for MS and Intel, to make a competing state forced replacement. So now it is just time to smear...
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Old Mar 29, 2013, 09:56 AM   #21
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Another company out to get a quick buck. Of course they target the one with the biggest wallet. They should really be suing the company who is using the third party apps.
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Old Mar 29, 2013, 10:00 AM   #22
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Killerbob View Post
Eventually Apple will do the math, and stop selling any iPhones/iPads in China.
As noted by camnchar and Virtualball, not a realistic option. They just have to become much more vigilant in their research, before releasing new products/services, and not only just in China. With their huge cash reserves, they're a sitting duck.

Quote:
Originally Posted by camnchar View Post
China is projected to be the biggest market for smartphones very soon.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Virtualball View Post
Yeah, stop selling to the most populated country in the world... righhhtt....
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Old Mar 29, 2013, 10:01 AM   #23
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So.Many.Lawsuits. -_-
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Old Mar 29, 2013, 10:04 AM   #24
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Quote:
"It's a sensitive period now since Apple is a big multinational company and it is surrounded by controversies on its practices in China."
Translation: "Apple has deep pockets and other Chinese companies are suing them, so we're just hopping on board."
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Old Mar 29, 2013, 10:05 AM   #25
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I realize that the panacea of the China market is hard for any manufacturer to resist, but at some point they see the value of abstract theories like "rule of law" and "transparency." Low level corruption and bureaucratic run-around is to be expected in much of the world, but it seems lately that the PRC is willing to turn the entire state apparatus on any corporation they choose. Exposing yourself to this sort of jeopardy may not be in the long term interests of anyone wanting to do business there.

It's a huge market, and with lots of "potential." And while on the surface it may look like a rich, modern and vibrant economy, just below the surface there are aspects of civil society that those in the West take for granted that simply don't exist yet in China. It is a one party state, with state run media, corporations, courts, etc. Not a problem if you're on the "nice" list, but very dangerous if you cross someone. Sure, you'll sell a several dozen million more iPhones in the short term, but you (may) eventually find that the price for those sales is too high.
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