Asymmetry and helplessness: the copyright ecology of online literature writers in China*
  • 1 Professor in the College of Liberal Arts, Journalism and Communication of Ocean University of China
  • | 2 Senior Lecturer at the School of Business, Law, and Communication of Southampton Solent University, UK

The gradual increase in the output of China's online literature industry and strengthening of the copyright development chain has yet to result in any standardization of copyright management. This article provides an analysis of discrimination against online literature writers, as their writing is usually considered less creative than conventionally published work. This paper then analyses the rampant piracy and plagiarism plaguing online literature in China and the difficulty authors encounter in protecting their rights. After examining this environment, the article discusses the reasons behind the dysfunctional copyright ecology facing online literature writers. It focuses on the position of the online literature platform, namely the potential capital advantage of the platform and associated weakening of the ‘elite’ label applied to certain online literature writers following from the freemium business model. Unclear management from the government is also addressed.

Contributor Notes

You are not authenticated to view the full text of this chapter or article.

Access options

Get access to the full article by using one of the access options below.


Pay to Access Content (PDF download and unlimited online access)

Other access options

Redeem Token

Institutional Login

Log in with Open Athens, Shibboleth, or your institutional credentials

Login via Institutional Access

Personal login

Log in with your Elgar Online account

Login with you Elgar account