Amendment to Taiwan's Copyright Act

April 22, 2019

A relatively new form of copyright infringement has been the subject of heated discussions lately, catching the attention of Taiwan’s lawmakers. This new form of copyright infringement is by way of providing an application programs (an “App”) or set-top boxes (“STB”) containing such an App, which in turn facilitates the connection to a website that contains unauthorized contents that may be streaming or downloaded for viewing. Examples of such contents include popular TV shows, motion pictures and the like.


The Legislature on April 16, 2019 passed a proposed amendment to the Copyright Act to address what might not have been sufficiently clear in the original wording in the law by adding an additional paragraph, i.e. Sec. 87.8, which purports to consider three types of conduct as copyright infringement, which may be punished by imprisonment of not more than 2 years and/or a fine of not more than NT$500,000.  These three types of conduct are described as follows:

  1. To provide to the public or otherwise make available an App that links or connects to unauthorized contents on platforms provided by over the top operators (“OTT”) such as Google Play Store or Apple Store;

  2. Instead of providing such an App, to guide, assist or provide preloaded network address or access in a way to facilitate the access by the public; and

  3. To manufacture, import or market/sell equipment or instruments containing such an App, e.g. a STB.