News and Cases from China: April 2018

Sogou Wins Patent Infringement Case against Baidu

In October 2015, Sogou initiated a series of actions against Baidu claiming infringement of its input method patents. Baidu in turn claimed that the patents were invalid. The dispute, which has lasted for more than two years, involved 17 patents, and claims for compensation of 260 million yuan  (approx. US$40 million). The case has been described as China’s first patent case in the internet industry. 

The Beijing Intellectual Property Court has ruled that Baidu  infringed three of Sogou’s patents and ordered Baidu to immediately cease infringing.

搜狗诉百度侵权案胜诉,搜狗三项专利获保护

自2015年10月起,搜狗公司基于其所拥有的多项输入法专利,陆续向百度发起了一系列专利侵权诉讼,百度也针对搜狗的涉案专利进行无效申请。这场争论历史两年多,涉及的侵权专利达17项、索赔数额高达2.6亿、涉及双方超6亿用户,影响重大,被称为“中国互联网知识产权专利第一案”

最终,北京知识产权法院判定搜狗对三项涉案专利享有专利权,百度的类似功能侵犯了搜狗的技术专利,属于明确的侵权行为。百度公司应立即停止使用三项涉案专利,以及立即停止发行、或通过任何方式向第三方提供使用涉案专利的“百度手机输入法”产品。

 

Beijing Quanjingke Information Technology Co. Ltd awarded RMB 460,000 (approx. US$ 72,000) Compensation in China’s first VR copyright case

Beijing Quanjingke Information Technology Co., Ltd. (Quanjingke) brought a copyright infringement action against Tongchuang Lantian Investment Management (Beijing) Co., Ltd (Tongchunang). claiming it had used its VR panoramic photography without permission.. Tongchuang argued that, in relation to many of the photographs, Quanjingke had not established copyright ownership and that, in any event, there had been no infringement.  It had made it clear to users that they must obey copyright law and had taken the works down as soon as it received notice of infringement.  Further, it had not received any benefit from the users’ use of the works. 

The Court held that the Plaintiff had established copyright ownership. The Defendant had not provided the relevant copyright information on the front page of its website; in fact, its legal notice stated that it had rights in all content on the website. The Court held that the Defendant had infringed and ordered it to compensate the Plaintiff for economic loss in the sum of 462,000 yuan (approx. US$72,500) and reasonable expenses of 32,500 yuan (approx. US$ 5,000).

 

首例VR著作权案: 原告获赔46万元

北京全景客信息技术有限公司称,同创蓝天投资管理(北京)有限公司未经许可使用其创作的VR全景摄影作品,侵犯其著作权,同创蓝天公司则以原告权利存在瑕疵及避风港原则提出抗辩。

法院经审理认为,原告方提供的涉及著作权的底稿、原件、合法出版物、著作权登记证书、认证机构出具的证明等材料,可以作为认定权利的证据。另外,经查证被告方网页,网页前端并未显示涉案作品的上传者信息,且被告的法律声明中声称网站上的所有内容均由其享有权利,因此,被告应当就本案侵权行为承担相应的法律责任。法院最终判定被告赔偿原告经济损失462000元及合理开支32500元。

 

JianNanChun Wins Trademark Case at Second Instance

The Guangzhou Intellectual Property Court has affirmed the first instance decision in a trademark infringement action brought by Sichuan Mianzhu Jiannanchun Winery co., LTD. (Jiannanchun) against Guangzhou Zengcheng Yinjie store (Yinjie) and the store operator, Yin. The court of first instance had held that the "Jian Nan Chun luzhou-flavour liquor" products sold by Yinjie infringed Iiannanchun’s trademark rights in the mark ‘Jianzhi’ rendered in Chinese characters, and ordered Yinjie to pay compensation of RMB 40,000 yuan (approx. US$ 6,500).

In December 2015, the enforcement authority seized 12 bottles of counterfeit wine named ‘Jian Nan Chun luzhou-flavor liquor’ from Yinjie. Jiannanchu brought trademark infringement proceedings before the People's Court of Guangzhou Huangpu District, seeking compensation of RMB 110,000 yuan (approx. US$167,500).  

The Guangzhou Intellectual Property Court upheld the decision that Yinjie’s product infringed the exclusive right in Jiannanchun’s trademark and affirmed the compensation that had been awarded by the court of first instance i.e. 40,000 yuan (approx.. US$ 6,500). .

 

剑南春剑指商标侵权 两审均获胜诉

近日,四川绵竹剑南春酒厂有限公司(下称剑南春酒厂)与广州市增城尹杰商店(下称尹杰商店)及该店经营者尹某商标侵权案,广州知识产权法院判决驳回上诉请求,维持一审判决,认定尹杰商店出售的“剑南春浓香型白酒”商品侵犯了剑南春酒厂持有的“剑南春”商标权,需赔偿剑南春酒厂经济损失4万元。

 

2015年12月,在执法检查中,尹杰商店被现场查扣12瓶“剑南春浓香型白酒”。经剑南春酒厂鉴定,被查扣的商品为假冒产品。剑南春酒厂诉至广东省广州市黄埔区人民法院(下称黄埔法院),请求法院判令二被告赔偿经济损失及合理支出11万元。广州知识产权法院认为,该商品侵犯了注册商标专用权。关于赔偿额,一审法院综合考虑“剑南春”商标的知名度、白酒的消费群体以及剑南春酒厂为制止侵权行为所支付的合理开支等因素,合理合法。

 

China’s First Standard Essential Patent Case – Sony held to infringe IWNComm’s patent

On 28 March, the Beijing Higher Court rejected Sony’s appeal and upheld the decision of the Beijing Intellectual Property Court in the patent infringement case between IWNComm and Sony.

In July 2015, IWNComm brought a patent infringement action against  Sony Corp. in the Beijing Intellectual Property Court, claiming infringement of its SEP, and compensation of RMB 33.36 million (approx. US$ 5.2 million). Sony applied unsuccessfully to invalidate the SEP. The Beijing Intellectual Property Court found that Sony had infringed and ordered it to pay compensation of more than 9.1 million yuan (approx. US$ 1.5million).

Sony then appealed to the Beijing Higher People’s Court. The Court held that Sony had made use of the patented invention without permission, at least in the design, research and development, or sample test phases. Thus, the Higher Court rejected Sony’s appeal and upheld the decision of the Beijing Intellectual Property Court .

 

中国标准必要专利第一案:西电捷通诉索尼专利侵权案胜诉

 3月28日,西安西电捷通无线网络通信股份有限公司(下称“西电捷通”)与索尼移动通信产品(中国)有限公司(下称“索尼公司”)之间的侵犯发明专利权纠纷案作出终审判决,北京高院判决驳回索尼公司的上诉,维持一审判决。

2015年7月,西电捷通以索尼公司侵犯该标准必要专利为由,将索尼公司起诉至北京知识产权法院,索赔3336万余元 ,此后索尼公司无效宣告请求被驳回。北京知识产权法院就该案作出一审判决,认定索尼公司构成专利侵权,判令其赔偿西电捷通910万余元。

索尼公司不服一审判决,向北京高院提起上诉。北京高院认为,至少在设计研发或样品检测阶段,索尼公司未经许可完整地实施了涉案专利技术方案,从而也可以认定索尼公司侵犯了西电捷通公司的涉案专利权,判决驳回索尼公司的上诉,维持原判。