Brief introduction of copyright laws in India

COPYRIGHT PROTECTS THE PRESENTATION OF THE IDEAS IN TANGIBLE FORM, AND NOT THE IDEA ITSELF

(I) WHAT DOES MEAN BY COPYRIGHT

The copyright means the right provided by the statues to the authors/originators/creators of different kinds of works, as enumerated in the Copyright Act. The right of authors/originators/creators includes the right of reproducing, communicating to the public etc.

(II) OBJECT OF COPYRIGHT

The Copyright Act was enacted in order to encourage the originality, creativity of the writers, artists, designers, dramatists, musicians, architects and producers of sound recordings, cinematograph films and computer software and to discourage the unlawful production thereof by any other person, without permission, consent and leave of owner of copyright. The basic object of Copyright Act to create an conducive atmosphere in order to encourage the creativity.

(III) BEBIFIT OF COPYRIGHT

There are may benefit of owner/holder of a copyright. As afore mentioned , the copyright provides the owner of a copyright to use the same exclusively (viz: to reproduce, perform, record, broadcast, or translate or adapt the works or authorize other to do these thing for a valuable consideration) . The details of few of the benefits of the copyright in general, have been given here in below:

(a) Reproducing the work
(b) Issuing the copies of the work to the public
(c) Performing the work in public
(d) Communicating the work to the public
(e) Making the cinematograph film or sound recording in respect of the work
(f) Making any translation or the adaptation of the work

The copyright holder has also to be aware of its right in the copyright. For example, one person may write a song, or sing a song, or take a photograph or prepare the CD, DVDs, software etc. The author of the same endeavors hard to create the same. Then it is natural the author has to reap the benefit of the same. The owner/author of the same may gain the money by selling the same or may authorize the other to do so , in lieu of valuable consideration. Though for the copyright , registration is no mandatory, however in case a copyright is registered, then the entries of the registered copyright are deemed to be correct prima facie. So it is advisable that copyright should be registered. It may provide a better evidence.

(IV) KINDS OF COPYRIGHT

There can be different kinds of art work which are subject matter of protection under the copyright Law in India. Viz:

(a) literary work (Computer programs are covered under the literary work)
(b) dramatic work
(c) musical work
(d) artistic works
(e) cinematograph films
f) sound recording etc.

(V) LAW OF COPYRIGHT IN INDIA IS GOVERNED BY THE COPYRIGHT ACT, 1957 AND THE RULES MADE THEREUNDER.

In pre independence Era , the Law of Copyright in India was governed by the Copyright Act 1914, framed during the British Rule. The Copyright Act 1957 witnessed five amendments, i.e. in the year 1983, 1984, 1992, 1999 and 1994 in order the come at par with the terms of different international treaties , i.e.Berne Convention, the Universal Copyright Convention, the Rome Convention and the Agreement on Trade-Related Aspects of Intellectual Property Rights (TRIPS) agreement etc. One of the major amendment to the copyright Act 1957 was done in the year 1994 in order to safeguard protection to original literary, dramatic, musical and artistic works, cinematography, films and sound recordings. The new technical areas such as satellite broadcasting, computer software and digital technology were also brought under Indian copyright protection.

In the year 1999 , another major development took place with extension of International Copyright Order 1999, to all the nationals of WTO (World Trade Organization) member countries.

(VI) AUTHOR OF COPYRIGHT


NATURE OF WORK

AUTHOR

The literary

The person who creates the work

The dramatic work

The person who creates the work

The musical work

The composer

The cinematograph film

The producer.

The sound recording

The producer

The photograph

The photographer.

The computer generated work, like the software or the hardware etc

The person who causes the subject matter computer work to be created.


(VII) RIGHT OF COPYRIGHT OWNER/AUTHOR IN THE WORK

(a) Dramatic Work/Artistic Work/Musical Work

The Owner of the Work has exclusive right to:

(i) Reproduce the work
(II) Present the work in the public
(iii) Perform the work in public
(iv) Publish the work in public
(v) Include the work in any cinematograph film
(vi) Translate the work in any language

(b) Cinematograph film/Sound Recording

The owner has the exclusive right to:

(i) Make the copy of the work
(ii) Sell or offer for sale the work
(iii) Present the work to the public.

(VIII) GOVERNMENT WORK

In case of the Government work, the government is the first owner of the copyright, in absence of any work to the contrary.

(IX) RIGHT OF AUTHOR/OWNER OF A COPYRIGHT

The owner of a copyright enjoys the exclusive right to reproduce the art work/copyright material, issue copies, perform, adapt and translate the art work, except in the cases of fair use.

(X) DOCTRINE OF FAIR PLAY

The doctrine of 'fair use', allows the persons, other than the owner of copyright for certain purpose and that the same does not constitute infringement. The details of few the work, covered by the Doctrine of the fair play, has been given here in below:

(a) For research or private study,
(b) For criticism or review,
(c) For reporting current affairs,
(d) For the purposes of judicial proceeding,
(e) For the performance by an amateur club etc.

(XI) DURATION OF COPYRIGHT

The Copyright prescribes the protection for limited period of time. The Copyright protection lasts for 60 years normally and this period is counted from the year, following the death of the author in the case of original literary, dramatic, musical and artistic works. In cases of work of cinematograph films, sound recordings, photographs, posthumous publications, anonymous and pseudonymous publications, works of government etc , the period of 60-year period is counted from the date of publication of the same.

(XII) PROCEDURE FOR OBTAINING COPYRIGHT REGISTRATION IN INDIA:

The Registration of copyright in India at the Copyright office India. In this office, a register is there in which the details of registration is entered , incorporating the names, titles of works, names and addresses of authors, publishers and owners of copyright.

In case , the Art Work/Label is having commercial/Trade Mark significance, then prior to filing of Copyright Application , the application has to take the no objection certificate from the Registrar of Copyright by filing the request on Form TM-60. Normally for other copyright, not having the Trade Mark significance, the filing of request on form TM-60 is not required.

The author , owner or a person interest may file the application on Form – IV as prescribed under the copyright act along with the necessary statement of particulars (in triplicate). The Form – IV has to be signed only by the applicant. Copyright application can be filed in relation to the copyright work as mentioned in the copyright act, viz: the original literary, dramatic, musical and artistic works, cinematograph films, and sound recordings work etc.

The applicant is required to file separate application for each separate art work/copyright and the has to be made before the Registrar of Copyright at the office , i.e. the Copyright Office, Department of Education, Ministry of Human Resource Development, B - 2/W - 3, Curzon Road Barracks, Kasturba Ghandhi Marg, New Delhi – 110001 . The office of the copyright is constituted under the copyright act of India. Each copyright application has to be accompanied by the fee as prescribed under the copyright act .

(XIII) THE APPLICANT FOR A COPYRIGHT REGISTRATION IS REQUIRED TO FURNISH THE FOLLOWING INFORMATION, /DOCUMENTS

(a) Name, address and Nationality of the Applicant.
(b) Nature and interest of the applicant in the copyright work.
(c) The Details and description of the copyright work.
(d) The name and title of the copyright work.
(e) The name, address and the nationality of the author of the Copyright, applied for.
(f) Whether is published or that the same is an unpublished work.
(g) In the work is published, then the year of the first publication of the copyright work.
(h) The specimen copy of the copyright has to be filed with the application.

The applicant also has to disclose that whether any other person is also having interest in the subject matter copyright. In case any such person is disclosed, then the Registrar of copyright is bound to issue notice to such person interest , prior to registering such art work.

In case no notice is issued to such person interested , prior to grant of copyright registration, then such copyright registration may be rectified from the registered on account of violation of Rule 16 of the copyright rule 1958.

The entries pertaining to the copyright application in the register are kept open to the public for reasonable period of time and any person may take inspection of the same.

The registrar of Copyright, after fully satisfied with the application, may issue the registration certificate to the applicant. In case, the Registrar of copyright is having any doubt, the appoint grant a hearing to the applicant and the applicant may remove those objections.

The registration certificate of the copyright, normally provides the details of owner of copyright, author of copyright, year of first publication of the art work. The entries of the registration certificates are prima facie presumed to be correct.

In case there is any wrong entry or there is any mistake in the register, then the registered copyright may be rectified/amended by the appropriate application/petition, moved for rectification of the same.

(XIV) ASSIGNMENT OF COPYRIGHT

The owner of a copyright can assign its right in the Copyright in favour of any other person with due consideration. The assignment of copyright has to be in writing. The copyright law does not recognize the oral deed of assignment of copyright.

(XV) THE LEGAL REMEDIES AVAILABLE TO THE OWNER OF COPYRIGHT

The Owner of a copyright has two types of legal remedy available for him, in cases of infringement of copyright by the other parties;

(a) Civil Remedy: The author/Owner of a Copyright may sue for infringement of copyright by filing a Suit for permanent injunction , there by the owner of a copyright can obtain an interim injunction orders against the infringers. The Owner of a copyright may also get the Local Commissioner appointed and can get the infringed works of the infringers seized. The Owner/author of a copyright work may also ask for the damages , because of the loss and injury caused by then impugned activity of the infringers.

However the infringers may take this defence that at the time of infringement, the same was not aware not aware and had no reasonable ground for believing that copyright subsisted in the work

(b) Criminal Remedy: The author/owner of a Copyright can file a criminal complaints against the pirates/infringers. In criminal complaints, the search and seizure orders are issued and infringed works of the infringers/ pirates can be seized. The criminal remedy is more effective in nature as because of the same, the pirates may put behind the bars, besides seizure of the infringed works.

The punishment for the offence of infringement of copyright, as provided under the Copyright Act is imprisonment for six months (minimum) which may extend upto maximum for one year with the minimum fine of Rs. 50,000/- (minimum) which may extend upto maximum for Rs. One Lakh.

In cases of infringement of Copyright, even a police officer , not below the rank of sun inspector, may seize the suspect products, in case the same has reasonable ground to believe that the same are infringed products.

 

Published in Intellectual Property Rights
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