The Motion Picture Association (MPA) has signed a Memorandum of Understanding with seven Chinese web-sites to establish a co-ordination mechanism for online copyright protection.

The seven websites are popular video-sharing web-sites, or user-generated content sites, including,,,,, and

The MoU was signed Friday (April 18) in Beijing at the Third Conference on Online Movie Copyright Protection, which was jointly held by MPA China and the Copyright Union of Internet Society of China.

In the seven-point MoU, the sites agreed to include in their customer agreements provisions stating that users of their sites should agree not to upload any works protected by Copyright Law and that the seven sites have the right to remove any infringing work at their discretion.

The sites will also each designate a contact person to manage take-down notices, sent out by the MPA or its member companies, and will remove any infringing work within three working days of receipt of an MPA take-down notice.

The sites will also discuss with the MPA the technology of filtering infringing programmes to reduce the posting of infringing works.

Mike Ellis, MPA president and managing director, Asia Pacific, pointed out that the MoU is not only to address the online copyright issue but also a gesture to promote China 's video-sharing web-site industry.

'While legislation is clearly an important component of what we do, the need to build co-operative relationships with the industry is an equally key component of our work in the digital age,' Ellis said.

For the seven web-sites, the MoU is also a clean-up gesture after China 's recent clamp down on video-sharing web-sites. On March 20, the State Administration of Radio, Film and Television (SARFT) announced a list of web-sites that are being punished or closed down. Of these, 32 video sites, including, received a warning punishment while 25 sites were told to cease services.

On March 31 SARFT announced 'Rules for the Administration of Internet Audiovisual Programme Services' and began to issue the licences of internet audiovisual programme services. So far, only state-owned web-sites and four privately-run sites - Megajoy,, and Enlight Media - have been issued with licences.

'We want to show that we have been providing legitimate contents and we believe we'll be issued a licence very soon,' said Wu Yun, general manager of