China, Chinese, IP, intellectual property, copyright, copyright history, international law, world trade organization, wto, damages, film import quota, people's republic of china


The advent of the internet brought about revolutionary changes and challenges to the world. Internet piracy is one area which is presenting new challenges, particularly to copyright holders such as artists, filmmakers, and creators. China has been a hotbed of piracy and is home to the second highest number of file sharing infringers in the world. China has made strides to improve its copyright protection, such as implementing a copyright law in 1990, as well as joining the World Trade Organization and signing on to the Agreement on Trade-Related Aspects of Intellectual Property Rights, which specifies minimum levels of intellectual property protection each member nation must provide, the World Intellectual Property Organization Copyright Treaty, and the World Intellectual Property Organization Performances and Phonograms Treaty. However, China’s compliance with its obligations as a signatory to the Agreement is a continued point of contention between it and the United States.

This Note proposes ways for China to resolve the problems by increasing the statutory maximum damage award for copyright infringement in China, relaxing the foreign film quota, stronger enforcement of the copyright law to protect films that are not formally imported into China, and creating a special copyright division of the Specialized Intellectual Property Tribunals. Implementing these solutions will benefit not only American creators, but Chinese creators as well. With 21st Century problems, these solutions will help ensure that everyone has effective copyright protection in China in the 21st Century in light of the global marketplace that is the Internet.