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Publishing heavyweight files lawsuit against pirated comic app

2012/05/03 20:33:10

Taipei, May 3 (CNA) A key player in Taiwan's publishing industry announced Thursday it had filed a copyright infringement lawsuit against a local developer of a mobile app that contains pirated comic book content, saying it is determined to boycott pirated digital content.

The developer of the Comic King program, which is one of the most popular paid downloads on Apple Inc.’s App Store, has been accused of distributing unauthorized content and infringing on the intellectual property of copyright holders.

The lawsuit was filed recently by Taiwan’s Sharp Point Publishing Group and started legal procedures at the Hsinchu District Prosecutors Office in northern Taiwan, according to the Taiwan Digital Publishing Forum.

The forum was formed to promote the development of electronic publishing applications and products that will benefit consumers and content creators, as well as makers of reading systems.

"It's difficult to give proof of pirated mobile content because most of the servers storing the illegal content are located in other countries,”said Ho Fei-peng, chairman of the forum, at a press conference.

"We hope the government addresses the problem of pirated digital content and bans connections of the websites that seek profits with pirated content, in order to protect intellectual property,”he said.

The developer of Comic King, who is an engineer working in Hsinchu, has claimed that his app contains more than 80,000 sets of comic books and has been downloaded 10,000 times, according to the forum.

That equates to the app causing a loss of about NT$8 million (US$273,600) for Taiwan’s publishing industry each time the complete app is downloaded, based on an average selling price of NT$100 for one set of comic books, it added.

Currently the app remains on the shelf of App Store, but its function that allows searching for pirated comic book content has been removed following the copyright infringement lawsuit, the forum said.

(By Jeffrey Wu)