Popular among Chinese youngsters, Peppa Pig is the latest victim of intellectual property infringement in China and has successfully stopped two Chinese businesses from producing and selling, according to South China Morning Post.
At Monday’s trial at Hangzhou Internet Court, the judge ruled that Peppa Pig and her “family” were distinct artistic characters protected by intellectual property rights. Jufan Limited of Shantou, Guangdong province, seller of a toy kitchen set decorated with Peppa Pig images, and Jiale Toys Industrial, producer of the set were fined RMB 30,000 and RMB 120,000 respectively.
The British companies filed for copyright infringement after discovering the product was selling on Alibaba Group Holding’s Taobao Marketplace. Taobao had deleted the shop link before the trial started, so its involvement did not come up in the proceedings, according to the judge.
Olivier Dumont, president of family and brands at Entertainment One, one of the owners of the British animated TV series for preschool children, said the company appreciated Taobao’s support in proactively monitoring and removing infringing product listings, as well as the offline investigations it has launched to crack down on bad actors and trace their unlawful activities back to their source.
Peppa Pig was introduced in China in 2015 and has since won the hearts of Chinese youngsters. Toys, clothes and other products are prevalent on the market.