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China’s ban on South Korean online games fuels IP theft

Niji Ng

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Photo credits: www.socialmediaasia.com
Reading Time: 3 minutes

The Chinese government is sticking to its ban on providing licensing rights to South Korean developers for distributing mobile games inside China, is not only hurting the bottom line of the established developers but also allowing local copyright infringers and intellectual property thieves to thrive in the Chinese market.

China stopped new licensing for product distribution in March 2017 following the South Korean government’s permission to the USA to install the THAAD missile defense battery and radar system on South Korean soil. After the ban, Wemade, Bluehole Inc., Smilegate, and Nexon, some of the best known online game developers, are not able to obtain the license.

During this period, the Chinese government has allowed the distribution of at least 412 licenses to foreign-made games. From March 2017, on the other hand, the South Korean government has allowed 111 Chinese online games for sale in South Korea.

China has historically been the biggest market for South Korean online and mobile games. But since 2016, all mobile games must be approved before they can be distributed in China.

Beijing’s unofficial sanctions stretched from video games and entertainment to retail stores and even tourism. Tourist packages for Chinese citizens to travel to South Korea became unavailable for almost a year, and impacted Olympic ticket sales, though the tourist packages were put back on sale before the games.

South Korean game developers have seen no such reprieve, while Chinese copyright infringers and pirate servers have reaped the benefits in their absence.

In 2017, South Korea’s online and mobile gaming industry exported a value of 4 trillion won ($3.8 billion), according to figures from the Korea Creative Content Agency, and as high as 5 trillion won ($4.7 billion), according to the Korea Association of the Gaming Industry. That figure, while hefty, represents off-pace growth due to weak sales from the Chinese ban.

Local copyright infringement on Korean games is nothing new, particularly in China. South Korean game developers have been on top of the gaming industry since the late 1990s, and have consistently failed to adequately copyright and protect their product, perennially the newest and most sought-after item. Shanda Games, one of China’s top publishers, claimed in 2016 to be earning more than $100 million a month by distributing “The Legend of Mir,” ripped from the Wemade Entertainment title of the same name. The two companies are in the midst of a years-old lawsuit, though a Shanghai court has already protected Shanda’s copyright claims to the sequel.

Chinese courts have shown an increased vigilance when it comes to copyright infringement and intellectual property protection. In 2014, a new policy granted three courts–Beijing, Shanghai, and Guangzhou–expanded jurisdiction over intellectual property rights.

But the trimmed-down judicial operation of the courts has also ossified in the face of foreign rights holders. In an interview with South Korean press, an intellectual property protection specialist warned that, in China’s courts, “there is an invisible wall that blocks foreigners from operating in the local market.”

PlayerUnknown’s Battlegrounds, a globally popular game developed by a South Korean games publisher, Bluehole, was similarly denied licensing in China. The violent nature of the game “severely deviates from the socialist core value and the Chinese traditional culture and moral rule,” the China Audio-Video and Digital Publishing Association published in an online statement. The content regulator is grouped under the State Administration of Press, Publication, Radio, Film and Television, China’s central content regulator.

Seoul-based Bluehole struggled to attain rights to distribute PUBG in China. The Korean company promptly partnered with Chinese internet giant Tencent, and Tencent took the rights to distribute the game in China.

The partnership, which emphasised “working around regulations” has yet to see the game published, at least not the Korean original. The day before Tencent claimed rights to distribute PUBG in China, they released their own copycat version of the game, “Glorious Mission.”

Source: forbes.com

 

Niji has been in the writing industry for well over a decade or so. He prides himself as one of the few survivors left in the world who have actually mastered the impossible art of copy editing. Niji graduated in Physics and obtained his Master’s degree in Communication and Journalism. He has always interested in sports writing and travel writing. He has written for numerous websites and his in-depth analytical articles top sports magazines like Cricket Today and Sports Today. Besides reporting industry headlines from all around the globe, Niji is also head of the content management team at Impressions Content Management, based in Kerala, India, which offers writing and editing services to clients around the world.

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Asia

Tiger Resort pushes for casino license in Japan

Niji Ng

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Tiger Resort pushes for casino license in Japan
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Tiger Resort Leisure and Entertainment Inc., the Philippines-based casino operator, is planning to start an office and obtain casino license in Japan.

Its parent company Universal Entertainment Corp. has announced the news on Wednesday through a statement on its website. “[Tiger Resort’s] Japan Branch will be established for research and analysis of the Integrated Resort Implementation Bill of Japan and study of the potential of a casino resort business in Japan in the wake of the enactment of said Bill in July 2018 with a view to becoming a future business contact (such as customer solicitation and marketing activities),” reads the statement.

The tentative date to register the brand was set for today, and the company said that Toji Takeuchi will be the Branch Representative for the company in Japan. The country legalised casinos in late 2016, but is still discussing legislation for integrated resorts.

Tiger Resort Leisure operates the Okada Manila casino in Manila, one of three integrated casino-resorts in the Philippine capital’s version of the Las Vegas gaming strip.

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Indian police cracks illegal gambling ring

Niji Ng

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Photo Source: indiatimes.com
Reading Time: 2 minutes

 

The police in the Indian capital of Delhi has busted an illegal online gambling ring. The gambling operations were being conducted from a residential building in New Ashok Nagar in east Delhi. The police arrested 14 persons, including the alleged owner and manager of the casino, for running the gambling ring, and 12 persons for participating in the gambling. The main figure behind the operation, who was only identified as “Deepak,” remains at large.

In India, gambling is legally prohibited apart from a few chosen locations, such as Goa. But the police indicated that the gaming endeavour could be tied to a money-laundering scheme as well. They seised a diary containing numerous transactions and customers’ names, 10 computer systems and a small amount of cash.

Pankaj Singh, the police department’s deputy commissioner, said the department had received several tips over the course of a few days prior to the raid. When a tip on Sunday indicated that the games were in progress in the first floor of the three-story building, cops moved in and made their arrests.

Singh was quoted by DNAIndia saying, “Our team raided the flat and found 12 people gambling online. The entire flat had been turned into a makeshift casino parlour and 10 computers with Internet connections had been installed in the house solely for gambling.”

The casino’s alleged owner, Amit Guttan, and his manager, “Neeraj,” were taken into custody along with the 12 gamblers. They were all released on bail after being booked for offenses under the Delhi Public Gambling Act.

The gambling group was reportedly formed through WhatsApp and regular customers recruited additional members. No outside individuals were allowed into the group. After paying an entry fee, the gamblers were provided with the password in order to play games online.

A police officer involved in the case added, “Roulette was the most popular game for these people because the winner was given a return which was 36 times the money they gambled.”

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Riot Games unveils “LoL PARK” new LCK Esports stadium!

Niji Ng

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Riot Games unveils “LoL PARK” new LCK Esports stadium!
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Riot Games, a California-based game developer has unveiled its new League of Legends exclusive stadium called “Lol PARK.” The new facility is located at Jongno-gu, Seoul, South Korea. It can host up to 500 people. The most important section of the stadium is a section in the form of a round open booth. Here, players are able to sit and play in the centre whilst the spectators can watch the players live. Due to the audience’s seats being in close proximity with the stage, the audience is able to even see a player’s individual screen. In addition, there is an incredibly large screen located at the top of the stage. This screen offers full picture quality from a multitude of angles, allowing the audience to watch the game without the slightest issue. The screen allows quality entertainment regardless of being at the front or back of the stage.

Also, there is a box specifically made for the coaching staff which is located on the outskirts of the stage. This box is clearly visible to the audience and adds yet another perk to the experience. After a game, the players are provided with a joint coverage area or interview zone in which they can interact in new ways with their fans. In addition, unlike fan meetings in the past when it was rushed and held outdoors, the LoL PARK provides a prepared fan meeting zone inside the facility.

Lee Seung Hyun, the representative of Riot Games Korea, commented, “I only hope that LoL PARK can provide a unique experience to everyday life. Jongno is a place that has a lot of companies and a lot more employees. I’d like this facility to be a place where you look twice and visit when you see it. The League focused stadium is more of an arena style than a studio. I have made sure and prepared this place to be a pleasant space for players. In addition, I did my best to set up various attractions and comfortable facilities for the audience who might visit here.”

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