Plagiarism, unauthorized broadcasting, among other copyright theft cases, frequently take place in China's film and TV industry, the Copyright Society of China said on Sunday citing a recent seminar.
Weak copyright protection has resulted in little incentive for screenwriters, shoddy quality of films and TV series, and copycat products, a statement from the society said. This has become a bottleneck to development for China's film and TV industry, as the country is now the world's largest TV series producer and consumer, third largest film producer and second largest consumer.
Wang Hailin, vice president of a national film literature society, said at the seminar that as the industry booms, an influx of amateur and new screenwriters are jostling in the market for opportunities, some even at the expense of working without contracts, disrupting the industry rules.
Legal experts blamed insufficient legislation. Copyright Law is the only law that can be referred to in terms of settling film and TV copyright disputes.
Feng Gang, a judge with Beijing's intellectual property rights court, said lawmakers need to better define plagiarism and fair use for the Copyright Law.
Cui Guobin, a Tsinghua University professor, suggested strengthening the role of industrial associations in copyright protection, establishing blacklist for infringers for instance.
Last year, Taiwanese writer Chiung Yao accused mainland screenwriter Yu Zheng of copying her 1993 book and television series "Plum Blossom Scar", which drew the issue of film and TV copyright infringement into the spotlight.
Chinese TV series have long been accused of being of the same genre and containing tedious plots by young audiences, leading to more and more people following foreign TV series.