iQiyi CEO Denounces ‘Soft Piracy’ in Entertainment Industry

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Gong Yu, Founder and CEO of Chinese video platform iQiyi (Source: Sina)

On November 5, at the 4th Hongqiao International Economic Forum, Gong Yu, Founder and CEO of Chinese video platform iQiyi, said that online piracy is divided into hard and soft piracy, and that the latter is the main form of piracy at present, including video segmentation, commentary and recreation.

“The emerging forms of piracy, such as through commenting and recreating copyrighted content, are accompanied by the new online business model, among which commentary is the biggest blow to the film industry. The form of piracy is still changing,” Gong Yu said.

In April this year, more than 50 film and television companies, five long video platforms and film and television industry associations issued a joint statement, including iQiyi. In their statement, they called on the producers and operators of short video platforms and public accounts to respect originality and protect copyright, as well as not to edit, cut and disseminate related film and television works without authorization.

At that time, the boycott also attracted the attention of relevant government departments. The person in charge of the China Film Administration once said that the organization would intensify its crackdown on short videos’ infringement of film copyright.

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Gong Yu also shared a set of data at the forum. During the period from February 14 to March 7, 2021, more than 12,000 pirated copies of iQiyi‘s hit drama “My Heroic Husband” went online, 75% of which are short videos. As for the Super Sketch Show released on October 15, Gong said over 11,000 pirated copies of the show are now online, of which the proportion of pirated short videos dropped to about 30%.

From the monitoring data of iQiyi, it can be seen that with the strengthening of regulations, the soft piracy behavior has been reduced.