On December 21, Yahoo! China lost the lawsuit filed by several record companies for providing illegal MP3 downloading links. The Higher People's Court of Beijing ordered Yahoo China to compensate the record companies 210,000 yuan. The same day, however, the same court found Baidu not guilty in a lawsuit of a similar nature.
This caused quite a stir. Some people thought that the reason why Baidu got off lucky was because record companies filed their intellectual property rights lawsuit against Baidu in July 2005, a year before the Regulations on the Protection of the Right of Communication Through Information Network took effect.
But Yu Guofu, a well-known lawyer, insisted that the court's ruling was very fair for it made the ruling based on the same principle – "the items found by the search engines shall not violate the rights of the obliges."
The real reason of Yahoo! China's failure was not because the website provides illegal MP3 downloading links but because it did not immediately delete these links after the record companies voiced their complaints against its IPR infringement acts. This was against the principles set up by the authorities.
For more details, please read the full story in Chinese. (http://www.bbtnews.com.cn/mainland/channel/35311.shtml)
(China.org.cn December 24, 2007)