Li Guoqing, joint president of the Chinese Internet shopping website Dangdang.com, has announced that the company will stop putting advertisements on search engine Baidu.com from April 2011 due to the recent accusation that Baidu.com is involved in literature and music piracy.
Over 50 Chinese writers and publishers claimed around March 15, the World Consumer Rights Day, that Baidu provides free downloads of their works without the consent of the copyright owners. It also said that the Chinese search engine company offers the free downloads of music, causing the overall shrinkage of the Chinese music publishing industry. They said that if Baidu takes no action, they will start a class action lawsuit against the search engine company.
Commenting on the accusation, Li said that Dangdang.com would like to offer financial support if these copyright owners sue Baidu.com for infringement. He said on his blog that starting from April 1, 2011, Dangdang.com will stop advertising cooperation with Baidu, and instead place all that extra money into improving its own e-commerce services.
In addition, Li asked netizens to directly search related products on Dangdang.com, which focuses on the online sales of books, instead of using Baidu's search engine.
At present, a large scale of information can be found when searching Dangdang.com or book information on Baidu.com. Other Internet book retailers like Amazon.cn also have similar promotions on Baidu.com.