Apple Appeals Chinese Ruling Over Pirated Encyclopedia

Apple has appealed a Chinese court ruling that states the company profited off a pirated encyclopedia it was selling through the App Store, according to CNet.

The courts determined that an app being sold by the company had lifted significant portions of text from the “Encyclopedia of China” without seeking permission from the copyright holder. Since the judgment states that Apple had profited from the sale, the court is forcing the company to pony up $84,000 in fines.

According to the Cult of Mac, Apple has stated that it will not take responsibility for the sale of the app in question. The company claims that it is merely a store operator and isn’t liable for the content the offending application contains.

“The App Store offers customers in China access to an incredible selection of over 700,000 apps created by Apple’s developer community. As an IP holder ourselves, Apple understands the importance of protecting intellectual property and when we receive complaints, as we did in this case, we respond promptly and appropriately,” the company said in a statement to The Next Web.

The courts ultimately ruled in favor of China Publishing House, the company responsible for releasing the encyclopedia. The publisher feels that Apple has caused a substantial loss in the profits by offering the app to its customers. The courts decided that, since the digital encyclopedia was for sale in the App Store, Apple is ultimately responsible for coughing up $84,000 in fines.

Since Apple believes it has no legal obligation in the matter, the company has decided to appeal the ruling. Although it may cost the company more to battle the ruling than pay to the fines, it would seem Apple is very adamant about sticking to its guns.

Do you think Apple should have to pay $84,000 in fines for selling an app that contains copyrighted material? Since every app must be approved beforehand, is the company ultimately responsible for the content offered to its customers?

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