'Playboy' Unleashes Lawyers on Chinese Bunnies

16 October 2006

CHICAGO: The use of images of oryctolagus cuniculus by three reckless Chinese entrepreneurs has got the ears of Playboy Enterprises a-quiver with litigious indignation.

One of the companies, Pearlboy (Chinese for 'new Playboy'), has been told to stop using the US company's famed Bunny logo and change its name.

The pulchritude pusher also seeks compensation from a department store that offered the public shirts bearing the Playboy logo; also the salesman who touted the shirts to the store.

In each case Playboy is demanding damages of $68,000 (€54,391; £36,656) plus an apology.

Foreign companies operating in China have long complained of copyright abuse and other infringements of intellectual property.

However, the tide appears to be turning following the verdict earlier this year of a Shanghai court which upheld Starbucks' right to protect its name and logo.

Data sourced from BBC Online; additional content by WARC staff