A Beijing court ruled against Apple Inc. in a copyright dispute on Thursday, saying the company must pay a fine for selling unlicensed electronic versions of books online.
The Beijing No. 2 Intermediate People's Court ordered Apple to pay a total of 1.03 million yuan (165,908 U. S. dollars) to eight Chinese writers and two companies for violating their copyrights.
The plaintiffs said they spotted applications containing unlicensed electronic versions of their books available for download last year, adding that the books were downloaded in great quantity, resulting in large economic losses for their authors, their lawyer said.
The court concluded that Apple violated the plaintiffs' "right of communication through information networks," an element of China's Copyright Law, by providing apps that contained unlicensed electronic versions of the books.
The company also failed to carry out its duties regarding the care of apps it provides online, the court said.