Search engine and AI developer Baidu has registered the copyright of its blockchain-powered entertainment app, Du Universe, three years after it went online, according to enterprise data aggregator Tianyancha.
The move suggests efforts by Baidu to stake a claim in what may be a future where metaverses shape how we work, play, and communicate with each other. Before Baidu’s latest move, other Chinese tech companies filed a slew of applications to register trademarks related to their metaverse developments or existing platforms to fend off patent trolls.
At the moment, Du Universe’s in-app resource, or currency, is called “Element,” and is issued when users play games or interact with other features in the app. Its design is similar to that of other digital currency mining platforms.
At the moment, Du Universe remains online, but new users cannot register to join the network. New terms and conditions for Du Universe will come into effect on October 15.
In September, Chinese authorities banned all cryptocurrency transactions.
Tencent registered ownership of “Timi Metaverse” and “Kings Metaverse” last month, linking up with the conglomerate’s massive video game business. Meanwhile, an Alibaba subsidiary applied for over 20 trademarks, including “Ali Metaverse” and “Taobao Metaverse,” according to public records seen by KrASIA.
Launched in June 2018, Du Universe is one of several applications built on top of Baidu’s XuperChain blockchain service for businesses. Baidu intends to make Du Universe the world’s largest blockchain-based entertainment application, and to build a digital environment integrating blockchain, big data, entertainment, social interactions, and commerce, according to Du Universe’s official website.