For the second time in six months Internet portal Yahoo-Kimo (
On Tuesday, PC Home Online (
"We found the majority of articles published in our `digital camera' section in early January were almost identical in content, wording and phrasing to those used by Yahoo-Kimo," said Vicky Tseng (
Tseng said the practice violates market fairness and infringes upon the company's intellectual property rights.
"We want Yahoo-Kimo to run an apology in the print media and compensate us at least NT$500,000 for our losses," she said.
Yahoo-Kimo -- which didn't deny the charges -- instead attempted to shift blame.
"These questionable articles were not produced by Yahoo-Kimo but by one of our content suppliers," said Charlene Hung (
That supplier -- Tomorrow World (
"We don't understand why PC Home insists that Yahoo-Kimo should make a public apology," Hung said.
Hung also warned PC Home against using the incident to harm Yahoo-Kimo's brand image.
This isn't the first time Yahoo-Kimo has been accused of plagiarism by a domestic portal operator.
In October, Yahoo-Kimo was fined NT$300,000 after a court ruling found the company guilty of copying online articles from Internet portal Yam.com (
In an early February exchange between the two, Yahoo-Kimo took aim at PC Home with a complaint to the Fair Trade Commission, saying "PC Home in its marketing activities has directly criticized us." According to Hung, PC Home criticized Yahoo-Kimo at an event asking Internet users to compare search engine functions between the two.
Cheng Yu (
Meanwhile, one Internet market watcher said the disputes illustrate that competition in the Web industry is getting tough.
"On the one hand, companies have to conduct various marketing campaigns to attract users, on the other hand they have to defend their turf," said Stephanie Chu (
With the number of portal visitors closely tied to a portal's advertising appeal -- and therefore its bottom-line -- stealing users from the competition is very important.
According to NetValue, in February Yahoo-Kimo ranked as the nation's number one portal with 5,080,000 online visitors, followed by PC Home's 3,417,000 visitors and Yam.com's 2,481,000 visitors.