Briefing: Bytedance vice president wins defamation lawsuit against Baidu

字节跳动李亮:因侵犯我个人名誉权,百度将在首页发声明道歉 – BiaNews

What happened: Bytedance vice president Li Liang posted on his Jinri Toutiao account Wednesday a screenshot of a court ruling that orders Baidu to apologize and compensate him for a defamation-related lawsuit. According to excerpts of the ruling obtained by BiaNews, Li sued Baidu for publishing at least one slanderous article targeting him on its website and app. The ruling requires Baidu to delete the related articles, apologize to Li with an announcement placed “conspicuously” on baidu.com, and pay the Li a total of RMB 50,000 (around $7,443) in damages.

Why it’s important: Although the ruling is a win for Li as an individual, it could potentially help Bytedance gain an upper hand in similar disputes or lawsuits with other entities in the future. It also appears that Baidu will comply or face consequences which will further pressure the search giant. Should Baidu not comply, the court will release details of the ruling to media outlets as a specific condition of the ruling. In a separate matter, Bytedance sued Baidu in June 2018 for posting a total of 14 articles that reportedly defamed Bytedance and its products.