Recently, the Hunan Provincial Higher People’s Court announced its decision regarding the case of Baidu Video (now renamed as Baiso Video) re-uploading videos stored on Xigua Video’s servers. The court ruled that Baidu‘s Xiaodu Company should cease the infringement, stop the unfair competitive practices, compensate for the economic loss and the cost of maintenance worth of 1.2 million yuan ($188.306), and publish a statement on its home page for mobile clients explaining the issue.
ByteDance develops and operates Xigua Video’s website and APP and found that many rural-themed short videos featuring the textual and graphical trademarks of Xigua Video were being posted to Baiso Video. Furthermore, the videos were being searched for in different geographical areas while the trademarks displayed in different network environments had been altered. These videos showed no uploader information and some were displayed with advertisements.
ByteDance held that both Baidu and Xiaodu were the actual operators of Baiso Video website and, as competitors in the same industry, their reposting of these videos and removal of trademarks constituted unfair competition and trademark infringement against ByteDance.
Baidu and Xiaodu argued that they weren’t engaged in the actual operation of Baiso Video. Oftentimes, short videos in its rural category are all uploaded by users, and so were the trademark removals.
The court held that the existing evidence was not enough to prove Baidu‘s operation of Baiso Video website. However, while the videos were played, Xiaodu removed the textual and graphical trademarks of Xigua Video, which infringed upon the exclusive right to use the registered trademarks of ByteDance. In addition, Xiaodu directly re-uploaded the short videos in its rural category of its platform into the rural category of the Baiso Video App without authorization. Bytedance contends that this act constitutes unfair competitive practices.
According to China Judgments Online, ByteDance disputed the infringements of Xiaodu and Baidu because of the TV series Wang Gui & Anna. The Beijing Intellectual Property Court ruled that Xiaodu compensated ByteDance for economic losses of 40,000 yuan and reasonable expenses of 12,800 yuan.