Jan. 6 – A U.S. software maker has filed a US$2.2 billion lawsuit against the Chinese government, two Chinese software companies and seven computer makers for pirating the code of its filtering software.
California-based Cybersitter LLC claims that Chinese software developers copied more than 3,000 lines of code from its own software using it to produce the government’s internet filtering and monitoring system called the Green Dam Youth Escort in English.
Computer makers Sony, Lenovo, Toshiba, Acer, ASUSTeK, BenQ and Haier were also included in the lawsuit for allegedly shipping Green Dam Youth Escort with its systems despite knowing the program was illegally copied. According to the Associated Press, the company is suing defendants for misappropriation of trade secrets, unfair competition, copyright infringement and conspiracy.
“The lawsuit aims to strike a blow against the all-too-common practice of foreign software manufacturers and distributors who believe that they can violate intellectual property rights of small American companies with impunity without being brought to justice in U.S. courts,” Greg Fayer, an attorney for CYBERsitter, said in a statement.
In July 1, 2009, China announced that all computers sold in the mainland would be required to have filtering software installed on its system although the decision was reversed after University of Michigan researchers found the system faulty and containing code from CYBERsitter.