Last update 7/26/2012 9:25:17 AM (GMT+7)

Baidu uses “.com” domain name to dodge Vietnamese laws

VietNamNet Bridge – With the domain name changed into “.com” from a Vietnamese domain name “.vn”, which allows avoiding the registration at Vietnamese agencies, Chinese Baidu’s social network “Baidu Tieba” has made debut on schedule.
Chinese Baidu attempts to penetrate Vietnamese market

Despite the violent criticism from the Vietnamese media and Internet users’ community, on July 16, Baidu, the Chinese leading Internet company officially launched the social network called “Baidu Tieba” – the Vietnamese version, instead of the initially advertised name “Baidu tra da quan” (Baidu ice tea shop).

The social network uses an international domain name instead of “.vn” or “”. However, when users access to the previous domain names or, they would still be able to access the social network, because these would automatically lead to

Besides, Baidu also provides online information inquiry service at, searching tool and online services at

An Internet expert said that using an international domain name “.com” is a wise move made by Baidu. Since Baidu does not use a Vietnamese domain name, the Vietnamese agencies would not be able to request Baidu to register the social network services, the thing they can do if Baidu used “.vn” domain name.

The expert said that there has been no regulation forcing foreign companies, when using the domain name “.vn”, to make registration to the management agencies. However, if referring to the Circular No. 09 and the Decree No. 97on the management over Internet services, watchdog agencies would be able to impose punishment on violators.

Since Baidu has decided to use an international domain name “.com”, there is only one way of managing the Chinese social network. Drafting a new decree on Internet service management, when international social networks, using “.com” domain name obtains a certain number of members or visitors, they would have report to management agencies and ask for the permission to run the social networks.

Only by that time, would the management agencies be able to apply necessary sanctions or release the decisions to impose punishment.

Baidu would bring difficulties to Vietnamese businesses

Do Ngoc Hung, Director of VOG, which is running PhunuNet social network, said that there are many differences between Baidu Tieba’s services and domestic Internet firms’ services. Meanwhile, Vietnamese and Chinese people have some similarities in habits. Therefore, Baidu Tieba can bring what users need with outstanding features and simplicity in using.

“As far as I know, Baidu Tieba has attracted a certain number of Vietnamese users. Baidu Tieba would grow continuously in the time to come and it may dominate the market, if domestic firms disregard the rival,” he said.

Hung went on to say that the launching of Baidu Tieba in Vietnam, one of the two most powerful social network services of Baidu which have been very successful in China, would threaten the survival of Vietnamese social networks.

According to Phan Anh Tuan, Deputy Director of VTC Online, though Baidu Tieba may affect social network, to date, the users of still keeps rising. However, it is likely that Baidu Tieba would be able to attract Vietnamese users, because the box for discussions on Baidu Tieba has the similarities with forums, a favorite model in Vietnam.

Meanwhile, Le Hong Minh, General Director of VNG, keeps calm about the appearance of Baidu in Vietnam, saying that the presence of Baidu, or any other foreign social networks in Vietnam, would create certain impacts on the domestic market.

Minh said Vietnamese firms have no other choice than accepting the new comers.

Source: Buu Dien