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Mo Yan's Nobel win sparks piracy concerns

(China Daily)

09:51, October 23, 2012

Chinese writer Mo Yan's Nobel Prize in literature has led to Mo-mania sweeping the nation, but as publishers rush to reprint the laureate's works, confusion reigns over the copyright status of his books.

In a bid to curb piracy, Beijing Genuine and Profound Culture Development Co, the claimed copyright holder of Mo's work, announced on Monday the details of Mo's copyright, and released Mo's letter of authority on the company to beat piracy, which had been witnessed by officials from the State and the Beijing municipal copyright authorities.

The company's legal representative said they are aware that there are dozens of versions of Mo's books on the market, and 15 publishers claim to have the right to Mo's works, including the digital rights. "Most of which are unauthorized, and we are yet to collect more evidence to take legal action," said Chen Zhongye, Guantao Law Firm partner.

As bookstores and online sellers report that they are out of stock, reflecting domestic readers' increasing demand for the laureate's books, publishers are eager to cash in on the surge in interest surrounding Mo.

Genuine and Profound Culture says it signed with Mo in May for the full rights to his work, physical and digital, including his back catalogue, any work in progress, and the right to recommend Mo's work to overseas publishers, as well as all the rights regarding copyright protection.

"In respect to publishing Mo abroad, we have the right to recommend works to interested foreign publishers and to help Mo with analysis and decision," said Chen Liming, president of the company.

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