IP court sees cases rising by 11% a year

Ke Jiayun
Shanghai Intellectual Property Court accepted 10,111 intellectual property cases over the past five years with last year's number up 20 percent on the year before.
Ke Jiayun

The Shanghai Intellectual Property Court accepted 10,111 intellectual property cases over the past five years with a yearly increase of 11 percent on average, according to a white paper issued by the court ahead of the World Intellectual Property Day on April 26.

Last year, the number of cases it accepted rose more than 20 percent compared with 2018.

The top five types of cases between 2015 and 2019 were disputes over general copyrights, patents, computer software copyrights, trademarks and unfair competition. The first two types both accounted for over 30 percent of the total. The others included disputes about franchise contracts and technical contracts and monopolies.

Nearly 13 percent of the cases involved parties from overseas, with 1,069 cases having foreign litigants and 238 with litigants from Hong Kong, Macau or Taiwan.

Most of the foreign parties involved in these cases were from the United States, Germany, Japan, South Korea, France, Sweden, Switzerland, Finland and Italy.

In the past five years, the court concluded 9,177 cases, or an average growth of nearly 20 percent year by year. A certain number of these cases related to new technologies or industries.

On example was a dispute on infringement of invention patent rights relevant to human genetic testing technology between DNA Genotek Inc and the Chinese National Human Genome Center in Shanghai, which ended with a mediation given by the court last year. 

Canada-based DNA Genotek Inc filed a lawsuit against Shanghai Shenyou Biotechnology Co, whose major shareholder is the Chinese National Human Genome Center at Shanghai, and two other companies for infringing its patent of a product used for collecting DNA from human saliva.

The two sides reached an agreement with the three companies' stopping producing, using and selling the products as well as destroying those already made. Shenyou paid DNA Genotek 800,000 yuan (US$113,63) for economic losses.

Another was the dispute between Shanghai Yaoyu Culture Media Co and Guangzhou Douyu Internet Technology, the nation's first of its kind in copyright infringement and unfair competition of the live video streaming of eSports games.

Yaoyu had exclusive rights to broadcast live Dota2 Asia Championship games on its platform Mars TV. However, Douyu, a live-streaming platform, took video clips from the live broadcast and added its own commentary.

Yaoyu sued Douyu for copyright infringement and unfair competition. The court ruled that Douyu's actions were unfair competition and it was ordered to pay Yaoyu 1.1 million yuan in compensation.

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