On Aug. 21, 2014, the Supreme People's Court issued the Provisions on Several Issues Concerning the Application of Law in the Adjudication of Civil Dispute Cases Involving the Use of Information Networks to Commit Tort (the Provisions), which became effective Oct. 10, 2014.
The Provisions aim to clarify the application of laws to tort cases involving the use of the Internet to infringe on personal rights such as right of name, right of reputation, right of honor, right of portrait and right of privacy (Internet Torts). The Provisions address liabilities for illegal deletion of posts, online "water army" and other grey Internet industries. The Provisions specify that a personwho alters, deletes, shields or removes a link to online third party information for the purpose of preventing others from accessing such information will be deemed to have committed a tortious act. The Provisions also provide that if an agreement under which a network user or provider of network services commit an Internet Tort agree with the tort victim to delete, shield and link break to online information for a fee, such agreement is invalid.
The Provisions also provide increased protection to the plaintiff, clarifying that any reasonable expenses incurred by the plaintiff in connection with the efforts to stop an Internet Tort may be recovered from the tortfeasor. If the damages to the plaintiff or the profits obtained by the tortfeasor are unable to be determined, the court may determine the amount of compensation at an amount less than CNY500,000.
- Provisions of the Supreme People's Court on Several Issues concerning the Application of Law in Trial of Civil Dispute Cases Regarding Infringement of Personal Rights via Information Networks
- Issuing authority: Supreme People's Court
- Date of issuance: Aug. 21, 2014/ Effective Date: Oct. 10, 2014