Chinese firm sues Apple for copyright infringement


Beijing: A Chinese clothing company has sued tech giant Apple for copyright infringement of its logo and demanded a compensation of USD 15,200, a court in Beijing said.

Clothing label KON claimed that Apple App Store logo closely resembles its own, which the company has been using as a merchandise trademark since 2011, and registered in 2012, according to the Dongcheng District People’s Court in Beijing, which has accepted the lawsuit.

KON is demanding compensation of 100,000 yuan (about USD 15,200), an injunction against infringing devices such as iPhones and iPads, as well as a public apology, state-run Xinhua news agency reported.

Both logos feature a triangular stick design. Apple replaced the old logo, consisting of a pencil, ruler and brush, with the current one on its operating system this year.

KON said that the two logos look practically the same to an untrained eye.

Launched in 2009, KON is a Beijing-based clothing label that targets young customers. The company said the logo design was inspired by singer Johnny Rotten of the British punk band The Sex Pistols.

Copyright infringement cases have become a norm in China.

On December 22, Chinese authorities said they handled 514 cases of online copyright infringement and shut down 290 websites during a July to November campaign.

A total of 4.67 million yuan of fines were levied for illegal downloads of movies and games, with 33 cases worth 200 million yuan taken to court.

In August this year, China opened its first court specialising in handling Internet-related cases in the e- commerce hub of Hangzhou to cater to the increasing number of online disputes.

The Hangzhou Internet Court in Hangzhou, capital of Zhejiang Province, handles cases such as online trade disputes and copyright lawsuits, the report said.

Hangzhou is home to many Internet companies, including e-commerce giant Alibaba.

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