Chinese Premier Wen Jiabao has signed a decree announcing that the Information Network Transmission Rights Protection Rule will be implemented on July 1, 2006.

The rule stipulates that any individual or organization shall not provide any other person's works, performance, audio or video products to the public through the Internet without their permission. This includes uploading files for users to freely download without the copyright holder's permission.

With this new regulation, the owner of the content may require the Internet service provider to delete their content or cut off the link to their content in a written notice after they find that rights are violated. The Internet service provider shall also forward a copy of the notice to the publisher of the content.

If the publisher does not agree that a violation has occurred, he can submit a written statement to the Internet service provider, asking to reinstate the publisher's service.

According to the new rule, copyright violators may face administrative fines of up to CNY100,000 and those who have seriously violated the law may be brought to criminal court.


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