The Intellectual Property Court rendered the 103-Xing-Zhi-Shang-Yi-49 Criminal Decision of August 14, 2014 (hereinafter, the "Decision"), holding that in case of any attempt to sell or rent copyrighted works of others by way of unauthorized reproduction, the originals or reproductions of works as rented shall be the object of regulation.
According to the facts underlying the Decision, Individual A is an actual responsible person of a KTV and incorporated by unknown methods audiovisual works (hereinafter, the "Works at Issue") into the internal system of the KTV machine without obtaining a license from the copyright holders so that all KTV balconies can play such songs, thereby infringing the copyrights of others. It was pointed out in the Decision that relevant evidentiary materials indicate that Individual A violated Article 91-1, which stipulates that "any person who infringes the copyrights of others through unauthorized reproductive means…(omitted)." Therefore, sufficient evidence exists that proves Individual A infringed the copyrights of others through reproductive means.
However, the prosecutor in this case also believed that Individual A also violated Article 91, Paragraph 2 of the Copyright Law, which provides: "any attempt to sell or rent the copyrighted works of others through unauthorized reproductive means…(omitted)." According to the Decision, the violation of this provision should be preconditioned by the defendant's renting intent or act. Moreover, Article 29 of the Copyright Law provides: "Except as otherwise provided in this Law, authors of works have the exclusive right to rent their works. Performers have the exclusive right to rent their performances reproduced in sound recordings." Therefore, it is the originals or reproductions of works that the said provision of the Copyright Law seeks to regulate, and in this matter Individual A simply put a computer-based karaoke machine recorded with the Copyrighted Work at Issue in his store for use by consumers patronizing his store and did not engage in any act of renting the originals or reproductions of works to customers. Therefore, the offense under this provision will not be established.