What is a Copyright?
Updated: Jan 31
A copyright is a form of legal protection that gives creators of original works the exclusive right to control how their works are used, reproduced, and distributed. Copyright applies to a wide range of creative works, including literature, music, films, artwork, and software.
Copyright law gives the creator of a work the right to control the following aspects of their work:
1. Reproduction: The right to make copies of the work.
2. Distribution: The right to distribute copies of the work to the public.
3. Derivative works: The right to create adaptations or other works based on the original work.
4. Public performance: The right to perform the work publicly.
5. Display: The right to display the work publicly.
6. Digital transmission: The right to transmit the work digitally.
In India, copyright law is governed by the Copyright Act of 1957, as amended by the Copyright (Amendment) Act of 2012. This legislation sets out the rights granted to creators of original works, as well as the limitations on those rights.
Some of the key provisions of the Copyright Act of 1957, as amended, include:
• The exclusive right to reproduce the work: This means that the copyright owner has the exclusive right to make copies of the work, either physically or digitally.
• The exclusive right to distribute the work: This means that the copyright owner has the exclusive right to distribute copies of the work to the public, either through sale, rental, or other forms of distribution.
• The exclusive right to adapt the work: This means that the copyright owner has the exclusive right to create derivative works based on the original work, such as translations, adaptations, or modifications.
• The exclusive right to perform the work in public: This means that the copyright owner has the exclusive right to perform the work in front of a public audience, either in person or through the use of media, such as television or the internet.
• The exclusive right to communicate the work to the public: This means that the copyright owner has the exclusive right to make the work available to the public through means such as broadcasting or streaming.
There are also a number of exceptions and limitations to these exclusive rights, which allow others to use the work without the permission of the copyright owner in certain circumstances, such as for the purpose of criticism, review, news reporting, teaching, scholarship, or research.
From a business perspective, copyright can be an important tool for protecting the financial investments that a company makes in creating original works. For example, if a company spends a significant amount of time and money developing a software program, it can use copyright law to prevent others from copying and distributing the software without permission. This can help the company recoup its investment by charging a fee for the use of the software. It is also important to know how to register a business in order to fully benefit from legal protections such as copyright.
In addition to protecting a company's financial investments, copyright filing can also be used to build and maintain a brand. For example, a company that produces a popular television show may use copyright law to prevent others from using the show's characters or logo without permission. This can help the company maintain control over the public image of its brand and ensure that its products are consistently associated with high quality and professionalism.
Process to apply for a Copyright:
Advantages of copyright:
Encourages creativity: Copyright filing provides creators with legal protection for their work, which can help encourage creativity and innovation.
Provides financial benefit to creators: Copyright law allows creators to control how their work is used and to earn money from their creations.
Protects intellectual property: Copyright filing helps to protect the intellectual property of creators and ensure that they are properly compensated for their work.
Promotes the dissemination of knowledge and information: By allowing creators to control how their work is used, copyright law can help promote the dissemination of knowledge and information.
Disadvantages of copyright:
Can limit access to creative works: Copyright law can make it more difficult for people to access and use creative works, particularly if they are not willing or able to pay for a license.
Can stifle creativity: Some critics argue that the exclusive rights granted by copyright law can stifle creativity and prevent the creation of new works that build on existing ones.
Can be difficult to enforce: Enforcing copyright can be difficult, particularly in the digital age, where it is easy to copy and distribute creative works without permission.
Can be costly: Obtaining the necessary licenses to use copyrighted materials can be costly, particularly for small businesses or individuals.
Overall, copyright can be an important tool for businesses in India to protect their investments, build and maintain their brands, and generate revenue from the use of their original works. However, before businesses can take advantage of these benefits, it is important for them to know how to register a business, as it is a mandatory step for any legal entity to take, which enables them to enjoy the legal protection copyright law provides.
Types of Copyright:
Copyright violations in corporate India have been the subject of numerous news reports in recent years. Let us give you some examples of copyright violations that have occurred in corporate India in recent years:
1. In 2018, it was reported that the popular Indian streaming service Hotstar had allegedly used content from the streaming service Netflix and other sources without proper licensing.
2. In 2017, music label T-Series was accused of copyright infringement by the international music group The Verve, who claimed that T-Series had used their music without permission.
3. In 2016, Micromax was ordered to pay $14 million in damages to the American company Ericsson for using its technology without a proper license.
4. In 2015, Reliance Entertainment was accused of copyright infringement by the Hollywood studio Warner Bros., which claimed that the company had illegally distributed its movies in India.
5. In 2014, Infosys was sued by the software company Oracle for allegedly using its software without proper licensing.
These are just a few examples of copyright violations that have occurred in corporate India in recent years. It is important for companies to respect the intellectual property rights of others and to ensure that they have proper licenses for the use of copyrighted materials.
Future of Copyright in India:
It is difficult to predict the exact future of copyright in India, but it is likely that the laws and regulations surrounding copyright will continue to evolve and adapt to changing technology and business practices.
One trend that may shape the future of copyright in India is the increasing importance of digital media and online content. As more and more people consume creative works through the internet, it will be important for creators to protect their intellectual property online and to have the proper licenses in place to use and distribute digital content.
Another important factor that may affect the future of copyright in India is the growth of small businesses and the gig economy. As more people register their businesses and start to sell creative works online, it will be important for them to understand and comply with copyright laws to avoid infringing on the rights of others. Also, as GST laws are mandatory for businesses, it is important for the small business owners to apply for GST registration.
Wondering how to go ahead with the process of copyright filing? Vyapaar Pundit has got you all covered. We take care of all your needs right from advising on documents required for copyright filing to driving the application process completion.
Written by Anusha Das