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Websites face off in court over monopoly lawsuit

A DISPUTE between two Websites offering Chinese novels is to be heard by a local court.

The case will be the first of its kind since China's Antitrust Law came into effect on August 1 last year, judges said yesterday.

Beijing Sursen Electronic Co Ltd, which runs, is suing at the Shanghai No. 1 Intermediate People's Court.

Sursen is asking the court to tell Qidian to stop acting as a monopoly and pay 9,800 yuan (US$1,435) in damages.

Judges said the court had sent the indictment to the plaintiff and would arrange a hearing soon.

Sursen said it had asked writer Kou Bin to create a sequel to his popular fairy story "Xing Chen Bian" last May and Kou authorized the company to publish the novel on the du8 Website.

But Sursen said Qidian was able to force Kou to stop writing the sequel because of its dominant position in the market.

Sursen also said that Qidian had falsely claimed to own the copyright of the sequel and had asked other Websites to delete the novel.

It said Qidian had abused its leading position to restrict the writer from writing for competitors. This was in violation of the Antitrust Law, it said.

Chen Wenfeng, director of Qidian's law department, said the Website had accepted the indictment and was preparing for the hearing.

Previously, Qidian sued Sur°?sen for reputation violations.

Chen said Qidian would be filing a copyright lawsuit against Sursen soon. He accused the du8 Website of providing links on its site to works published on Qidian.


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