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Music Label, Publisher and Production Company Lang Van Files Copyright Infringement Lawsuit Against VNG Corporation and International Data Group


Monday, January 27, 2014

Owners of World’s Largest Vietnamese Music Catalog Suing U.S. Investment Firm and Leading Vietnamese Internet Company

Lang Van, owners of the world’s largest Vietnamese music catalog and U.S. production company, filed suit last week in the United States District Court for the Central District of California as plaintiff against defendants International Data Group (IDG), a Massachusetts-based investment company, IDG Ventures, IDG Ventures Vietnam and Vietnam-based VNG Corporation (VNG) in a case of copyright infringement.

As stated in the complaint, Zing.vn(Zing), a VNG-owned and operated website and one of Vietnam’s largest entertainment portals, illegally makes more than 3,000 Lang Van-owned recordings and 600 albums available for streaming or download around the globe.

Lang Van has never received any financial compensation for the use and distribution of this copyrighted material, while the defendants continue to profit. Lang Van has records of their copyrighted content being viewed more than 250 million times on the Zing portal at this time.

According to the complaint, the U.S.-based fund IDG Ventures directly contributed to the exponential growth of Zing.vn’s website as well as the launch of the Zing Music website, bringing expertise, guidance and financial backing to help VNG grow its business. The investment granted the IDG defendants control over VNG and its operations, also allowing for the installment of Nguyen Bao Hoang, the managing general partner of IDG Ventures Vietnam, to the VNG Board of Directors.

“Lang Van has operated for nearly three decades to bring quality entertainment to Vietnamese people throughout the world,” said Chief Operating Officer Mimi Nguyen, Lang Van. “We’re enthusiastic at the overwhelming talent available today and look forward to growing Vietnamese Music within the world music market, and remain steadfast in our support of organizations and communities who consume music in a responsible way.”

Zing is recognized as one of the largest IP-infringing websites within Asia by several worldwide trade organizations. Currently, there are 590 infringement cases against Zing, with 1,081 cease and desist notices distributed. Brand giants Coca-Cola and Samsung pulled their advertising from Zing in 2012 after learning of the site’s practices. The Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA), the International Intellectual Property Alliance (IIPA), the International Federation of the Phonographic Industry (IFPI) and other organizations have denounced Zing’s practices, and the United States Trade Representative added the website to its “Notorious Markets List.”

Zing’s business model has thrived by illegally posting copyrighted works for download and making this service available anywhere in the world. The result has been growth in Zing’s web traffic, additional user exposure to VNG video gaming content and increased advertising revenue for the company. VNG currently boasts a number of significant U.S. partners on its website, including Ernst & Young and Google.

About Lang Van

Lang Van is the owner of the world’s largest collection of Vietnamese music. A family-owned business, the company was founded in 1985 as a music production and publishing company, and has built out its catalog over the last three decades to more than 12,000 recordings, 6,000 music videos, and 22 sub-labels such as Truong Son – Duy Khanh, Elvis Phuong's label EP Productions, Nguoi Dep Binh Duong, and others. Today, Lang Van operates as a music publisher, management company, distribution channel and retailer of some of the biggest names in Vietnamese music, such as Che Linh, Duy Khanh, Phi Nhung, Tuan Vu and many more. Based in Westminster, Calif., Lang Van is the only U.S.- based production company to have representative offices in the largest Vietnamese communities throughout the world: Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam since 1995 (19 years),Paris since 1989 (25 years), and Washington D.C. since 1988 (26 years), as well as several retail locations throughout the U.S.

Lang Van is currently producing music for Vietnamese artists Wowy, Nah and Minh Kien, and recently was a media partner for UNICEF’s first-ever ZEROawards gala fundraiser in Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam, in December 2013.

For more information, please visit www.langvan.com.



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