The Chinese government was sued in Los Angeles court this week over its imposition of content-filtering software that is allegedly based on code stolen from CYBERsitter, LLC. The $2.2 billion suit claims that the People's Republic of China distributed “Green Dam Youth Escort” censorship computer programs that “illegally copied over 3,000 lines of code from [the firm's] award-winning Internet content filtering software, CYBERsitter,” according to a company statement.

The suit also names Sony, Lenovo, Toshiba, Acer, ASUSTeK, BenQ and Haier and claims that, even though the Chinese backed away from its site-blocking move after announcing the software mandate for every new computer sold in the country last summer, those manufacturers kept shipping PCs with the pilfered code.

“This lawsuit aims to strike a blow against the all-too-common practices of foreign software manufacturers and distributors who believe that they can violate the intellectual property rights of small American companies with impunity without being brought to justice in U.S. courts,” said Santa Barbara-based company's attorney, Greg Fayer. “American innovation is the lifeblood of the software industry, and it is vital that the fruits of those labors be protected at home and abroad.”

Press release.

Advertising disclosure: We may receive compensation for some of the links in our stories. Thank you for supporting LA Weekly and our advertisers.

LA Weekly