China has an actual court dedicated to the internet

“Internet court” is a thing.

Jennifer Bisset Former Senior Editor / Culture
Jennifer Bisset was a senior editor for CNET. She covered film and TV news and reviews. The movie that inspired her to want a career in film is Lost in Translation. She won Best New Journalist in 2019 at the Australian IT Journalism Awards.
Expertise Film and TV Credentials
  • Best New Journalist 2019 Australian IT Journalism Awards
Jennifer Bisset
2 min read
Beijing's Internet Court

With 800 million internet users and counting, China's got its hands full with online disputes between citizens.

So to deal with those raging fires, the country has not one, but two dedicated "internet courts".

On Saturday, the second of those officially opened in Beijing by the name of "Beijing Internet Court". It deals with business transactions, personal information and intellectual property online, according to government-run news agency Xinhua.

Those disputes typically involve online shopping, service contracts, lending, copyrights and domains. Xinhua cited An Fengde, vice president of the Beijing Higher People's Court, as saying the number of internet-related cases are rising rapidly in China. In the first eight months of this year, Beijing's courts were reportedly stuffed with 37,631 online-related disputes, up 24.4 percent compared with the same period last year.

Beijing's new internet court will be open 24 hours a day and is reportedly staffed with 38 highly-experienced judges, sporting an average of 10 years trial experience each, according to Zhang Wen, president of the internet court. It's located in Zhongguancun Fengtai Science Park, and fittingly, trial details are readily accessible online through a "digital litigation platform", providing information on proceedings from each case, including judges' decisions.

Last year, China's first internet court opened in Hangzhou in China's east. A third court will reportedly open in Guangzhou this month, in the country's south.

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