Baidu, the country's biggest search engine, was ordered to pay more than 80,000 yuan to Han Han, one of China's bestselling author, for publishing three of his books and offering downloads without his permission, a Beijing court ruled today.
The Haidian District People's Court said Baidu didn't take proper action to prevent piracy when some Internet users put Han's books online for free download and it acted slowly to stop the piracy.
The court said Baidu should have known the downloadable documents can result in copyright infringement during the process of content review. It ordered Baidu to pay 83,800 yuan in compensation to Han Han.
The court rejected Han's demands for publishing an apology letter for seven days on Baidu.com and shutting down Baidu Wenku, an online document-sharing platform.
According to Han's lawyer, the author, 29, had repeatedly asked Baidu Wenku to stop piracy and copyright infringement, but it just "gave him the runaround" and Han's novels are still available at the site. The lawyer said Baidu put them online deliberately to attract viewers and boost revenues.