Cheshiji has been ordered to post an apology to Nio for 30 consecutive days and to pay 300,000 yuan in damages in a first-instance ruling.
(Image credit: CnEVPost)
A video blogger has been ordered to apologize to Nio (NYSE: NIO) and pay damages, marking the latest victory for the Chinese electric vehicle (EV) maker in defending its reputation.
Nio received a court ruling yesterday that found Cheshiji, one of the accounts controlled by a company called Shanghai Yunti, guilty of rights infringement, the EV maker's legal department said in a Weibo post today.
Cheshiji was ordered to post an apology to Nio for thirty consecutive days, and is required to pay Nio 300,000 yuan ($42,000) in damages within ten days of the judgment coming into effect, according to a court ruling shared by Nio.
As background, Cheshiji, who has 6.5 million followers on short-video platform Douyin, said in a June 2, 2022 video that Nio was price discriminating against Chinese consumers, with the price of the ES8 being significantly higher in its home market than what it sells for in Norway.
Nio sued the video blogger in late April, accusing him of spreading false information and violating its right to reputation. The EV maker demanded at the time that the blogger publicly apologize on its Douyin homepage and pay compensation of RMB 2 million.
The video posted by Cheshiji, in comparing the Nio in China to the same model in Norway, gave a Norwegian price that did not match the price announced by Nio, and the data was untrue, the court's ruling said, according to the Weibo post today by Nio's legal department.
The content authenticity of the information posted by the video blogger was not verified and misled ordinary internet users, Nio said, citing the court ruling.
He acted with subjective fault and his illegal behavior brought damage to Nio's business reputation and merchandise credibility, according to the ruling.
Notably, the judgment is a first-instance decision, and both parties have the right to appeal within the statutory period.
The infringing video and topic accumulated more than a million interactions and is still circulating online, Nio added.
Prior to the lawsuit, Nio had attempted several rounds of communication with the owner of the account, asking for clarification and an apology, the EV maker said.
However, they refused to release a clarification video when they admitted that the content was inaccurate, and their staff even admitted in the communication that they released the infringing video to create a conflict effect, according to Nio.
Nio will continue to defend its legal rights and interests through legal means against such distortion of facts and infringement of the legitimate rights and interests of Nio and its users, it said.
The compensation Nio has received in defending its rights and interests since last year has been donated to public charitable organizations to support public welfare causes, including school aid and poverty alleviation, it said.
On July 24, Nio said a man surnamed Xu, who previously posted tens of thousands of insults to Nio, Nio users, and Nio products from May 2022 to June 2023, publicly apologized to the company and compensated it for financial losses.
In March, Nio won its case against Laotan Shuoche, a video blogger on Douyin, who was ordered to post an apology and pay RMB 80,000 in financial damages.
($1 = RMB 7.1551)