Ministry of Radio, Film and Television, Ministry of Commerce, State Administration for Industry and Commerce Notice Concerning Rectification of the Audio and Video Products Market and Stopping Pirate Recording Activities

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According to recent inspections, infringing pirate recording and sale of audio and video tape products (namely boxed sound tapes, records, video tapes of recorded programmes) activities, has again occurred in some places. One sort of situation is pirate recording and sale of audiovisual products imported by smuggling, its content has all not passed examination and approval; one sort of situation is by oneself pirate recording and selling of products of domestic publications work units, infringing copyright and gravely damaging publications work units’ economic interests. These infringing pirate recorded and sold audiovisual products are not only of low quality, but some have unhealthy content. These false and inferior audiovisual products are sold at low prices, overflow the market, gravely impede the development of the audiovisual publications sector, cause consumers mental and bodily health and economic interest to be directly damaged. In order to rectify and strengthen management over the audiovisual products market, safeguard wide-spread consumers’ personal interests, and benefit the construction of a socialist spiritual civilization, determined stopping of and attack against unlawful actions such as infringing pirate recording and selling, etc. must be undertaken, and now the following notice is formulated:

1: Reaffirming provisions on principles of production and sale of the “Provisional Regulations on Audio and Video Products Management” (NDC document no. (1982)154), approved by the State Council: “distributed and sold audiovisual products must be published by a State-approved audiovisual publications entity”, “any work unit not having a business permit, may not engage in the goods duplication production of audiovisual products business. Audiovisual products not clearly indicating the name of the audiovisual products publication and duplication work unit, may not be sold by any work unit.” Commerce and business entities of all levels must continuously implement and enforce the spirit of Notice (83)COM No. 3, of 20 January 1983 of the Ministry of Commerce. In order to benefit audiovisual products management, from today, it shall be conducted mainly by dominant State-operated commerce business companies, and assist industry and commerce and radio, film and television entities in strengthening market management.

2: The current manner of distribution and sale of sound recording products will not change. For videotapes containing programmes, seeing that they already may serve for private household use, and also can be publicly projected, distribute and sale network points shall be established under strict management, and the rental sector will be vigorously developed. All work units and individuals selling or handling rental of programme videotapes, must be approved by the Radio, Film and Television work units of their locality, and afterwards apply for conducting registration or change of registration with the local administrative industry and commerce management organs, receive a business permit, and be filed with the local public security entity. Any individual or work unit not having been approved and not having received a business permit, may without exception not engage in sale or rental business of programme videotapes. Radio, film and television entities shall jointly with administrative industry and commerce organs pay close attention to establishing distribution, sale and rental network points for programme videotapes. At the time of examination and approval, they must conduct realistic investigation of the local videotape equipment and the number of projection work units and the business style of the applicant, strictly grasp it, and must consider the convenience of the user, and must also safeguard the copyright of video tapes, and not allow pirate recoding. Film distribution system may sell and rent videos of films distributed by them, but must also conduct application formalities with the local radio, film and television entity and administrative industry and commerce organ, and receive a business permit. All videotape publication work units may in all provinces, autonomous regions and municipalities apply for opening of retail sales departments, to sell products of that work unit.

3: After this Notice has been passed, all publications of audiovisual publication work units, must state in a clear position the full name and logo of the publishing work unit, and according to publication convention, in its enclosed material clearly indicate the full names of text or music writers and actors, and the year of publication; the name of duplication work units shall also be printed, in order to differentiate real from false.

4: Under the unified leadership of the People’s Government and the Social Culture Management Committee of the localities, the administrative industry and commerce management organs and radio, film end television entities must strengthen oversight and management of the audiovisual products market. Towards those violating the abovementioned provisions, the administrative industry and commerce organs may impose the following punishments:

1: Where illicit pirate recordings of audiovisual products are found on the market, they will be confiscated without exception; of those already having sold, the illegal gains will be confiscated; and where circumstances are grave and criminal, may be fined three to five times the value of his stock.

2: Illicit pirate recorders, apart from confiscation of goods in stock, may also be fined, and be ordered to compensate for the economic damage of the original publication work unit according the quantity of copies; where circumstances are grave and criminal, their equipment shall be confiscated and their business permit revoked. Confiscated items are to be handed over for handling to the radio, film and television entity. All audiovisual products carrying programmes shall be demagnetized, it is forbidden to handle undemagnetized audiovisual products by oneself.

5: All work units of the radio, film and television system having duplication equipment, shall exemplarily implement these regulations, and may not use official powers and privileges to violate these regulations, if there are violations, they shall be heavily punished, and the administrating leading person’s liability shall be investigated.

6: After receipt of this Notice, please immediately report to the local government Social Culture Management Committee, and coordinate with the relevant entities, after the Spring Festival of 1986, one-time clean-up and rectification of the audiovisual products market will be conducted, to stop illicit pirate recording sale activities.

This notice shall be transmitted to all local audiovisual publishing, production and sale work units, and shall be widely propagated using newspapers, radio, television, mobilizing the masses to resist and report and expose illicit pirate recording activities of audiovisual products.














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