Beijing Internet Court has called on netizens and intellectual property protection authorities to jointly safeguard the copyright of pictures in cyberspace after witnessing a boom in such disputes in the past two years.
The court said in a report issued on Tuesday that it heard 64,473 internet-related cases from Sept 9, 2018 to June 30, of which 77 percent related to copyright.
More than half of the copyright lawsuits involved the improper use of pictures, the court said, adding that most of the infringements happened on social media platforms such as WeChat and microblogging services.
“Defendants with little awareness of copyright protection and without sufficient channels to obtain the authority to use the pictures were major reasons for the disputes,” said Jiang Ying, the court’s vice-president.
The court also found that some picture copyright owners and holders used litigation as a way to get compensation instead of first trying to enforce their rights by going to the relevant government departments.
Picture copyright trading exchanges should be established, the court said, with the price paid to the copyright owner determined by the market.
The court joined hands with the capital’s copyright bureau on Tuesday, pledging to regulate the use of picture copyrights by rule of law and create a sound environment for IP protection.
They said in a statement that the registration of picture copyrights should be further regulated, and called on internet users not to use unauthorized images to maintain market order.