Instant noodle maker Master Kong is taking legal action against a person from Shanghai accused of spreading a damaging video about the company, asking for a hefty 1.5 million yuan in compensation.
In the video, a tour guide in Taiwan is seen urging a bus full of mainland tourists to boycott the brand, claiming that it uses “gutter oil” in its products. The footage was forwarded over 80,000 times in one day and was reposted by popular social media figures and celebrities before it was deleted.
The Shanghai office of Master Kong, a subsidiary of Taiwanese company Ting Hsin International Group, confirmed that it will be pressing a lawsuit against one Ke Xiaoyang, who is alleged to have spread the video. And by “spread”, we mean he was the first to post it onto his personal Weibo account on August 2.
Ke’s employer, Shanghai Oufu Communication Technology Company, is also among the four defendants, Shanghai Daily reports.
In 2013, Tin Hsin was reported to have been linked to a counterfeit olive oil scandal in Taiwan, and last year, Master Kong admitted that one of its Roasted Pork Noodle products was made with ‘poor-quality edible oil’, Xinhua reports.
In an effort to control the country’s social media sites, China has begun cracking down on “rumor mongers” who post false information online. According to a policy introduced in 2013, posting content viewed as “inaccurate” by the Chinese government that is retweeted 500 times or visited by 5,000 internet users can lead to up to three years of jail.