Tencent Technology (Chengdu) Co., Ltd. and Shenzhen Tencent Computer System Co., Ltd. enjoy the copyright to the game "Honor of King". Hubei Jixuan Network Technology Co., Ltd. and Hubei Jili Network Technology Co., Ltd. provided a rental platform service for the game accounts of "Honor of King" through the "Shan Dian Zu Hao" APP, and propagandized and popularized the APP on the website www.sdzuhao.com operated thereby. Changsha Qili Network Technology Co., Ltd. promoted the APP and distributed the game accounts through the website www.pc6.com operated thereby. The two plaintiffs believed that the defendants' behavior constituted unfair competition, and thus the plaintiffs first applied to the court for pre-litigation behavior preservation, and then brought the lawsuit to the court, requesting the defendants to stop the infringement, eliminate the impact and compensate for the losses.
The People's Court of Kaifu District, Changsha City held that Hubei Jixuan Network Technology Co., Ltd. and Hubei Jili Network Technology Co., Ltd., as operators in the Internet industry, ignored industry practices and implemented accounts rental under the premise of knowing that the real-name system was required for game accounts, and turned obstruction to the operation and management of the two plaintiffs into its own competitive advantage, and such act violated the principle of good faith and business ethics, caused a negative impact on the ecological environment of the industry in which platform operators in the Internet industry gain a competitive advantage through legal operation and standardized management, and disrupted the market competition order in the Internet industry, and also damaged the legitimate rights and interests of the two plaintiffs as operators and many normal real-name game users as consumers. Changsha Qili Network Technology Co., Ltd., as the operator of the Internet platform, failed to fulfill its prudent management obligations, propagandized and promoted the "Shan Dian Zu Hao" APP and distributed game accounts on the website www.pc6.com it operated, which also disrupted the market competition order. The acts of the three defendants all constituted unfair competition. The three defendants were ordered to stop the infringement, and Hubei Jixuan Network Technology Co., Ltd. and Hubei Jili Network Technology Co., Ltd. were ordered to publish a statement on the website www.sdzuhao.com operated thereby to eliminate the impact and compensate the two plaintiffs for economic losses as well as reasonable expenses for rights protection totaling more than 430,000 yuan.
This is the first case of pre-litigation behavior preservation for game account rental. On the one hand, this case guides the operators of Internet platforms to prudently manage the platforms they operate and gain competitive advantages through legal operations; on the other hand, in accordance with the Cybersecurity Law and the Law on the Protection of Minors, this case focuses on the protection of social public interests as well as the rights and interests of minors, and actively implements China's policy on the real-name system on the Internet and the prevention of minors' addiction, so as to protect the physical and mental health of minors. This case was selected into the 2021 Top Ten Copyright Cases of the International Association for the Protection of Intellectual Property (AIPPI) China and the 2021 Top Ten Judicial Cases of China's Internet Governance.