Weekly Copyright News: Delhi HC Clarifies Architect’s Moral Rights, Time Settles Dispute Over Embedded Tom Brady Tweet, INOX Screening World Cup Matches, and more
Delhi HC: Architect Cannot Prevent Demolition of His Work; Time Settles Dispute over Embedded Tom Brady Photo; Ai Weiwei Heads to Trial Against Volkswagen for Ad Featuring His Installation; Apple Courts Legal Trouble with Vegas Billboard; Daniel Wellington Unveils News Cricket World Cup Campaign; INOX to Screen India’s World Cup League Matches; Snap in Licensing Talks for Embedding Music, and more.
“Sharing, Suing and Settling is now a workable content commercialization strategy on social media.”
– Dr. Kalyan C. Kankanala, BananaIP
Indian Copyright News
Delhi HC: Architect Cannot Prevent Demolition of His Work
The Delhi High Court has recently held that an architect of a building/structure has no right under Section 57 of the Copyright Act to object to the demolition of his/ her work or to claim any damages for such demolition. The suit was filed by acclaimed architect Raj Rewal, against the Indian Trade Promotion Council (ITPO), which had stated its intent to demolish certain buildings for the restructuring of Pragati Maidaan in New Delhi. The Plaintiff sought an injunction for the defendants to recreate the work of architecture in the demolished buildings in an equally prominent location.
The court contrasted the moral rights of the author and the property rights of the land owner, and concluded that the requirements of urban planning outweigh the moral rights of an architect. The court interpreted the extent of moral rights as limited to actions that make the work “look, appear, be seen, as something different from what the author had created”, and thus affect the honour and reputation of the Architect. The court limited the scope of Section 57, stating that a failure to display the work is not an infringement of the architect’s special rights. What cannot be viewed, seen, heard or felt, cannot be imperfect and cannot affect the honour or reputation of the author.
Time Settles Dispute over Embedded Tom Brady Photo
News outlet Time Inc. has settled a copyright infringement dispute involving its embedding of a tweet containing a photograph of American football star Tom Brady. Photographer Justin Goldman had sued Time and other news outlets, including New England Sports Network and Boston Globe Media Partners, in 2017 in a New York court. The other news outlets settled the dispute last year; however, the dispute with Time Inc. was headed for a full trial following the court’s observations that many terms had adopted different meanings since the enactment of the Copyright Act in 1976.
Goldman had argued that embedding tweets violated the photographer’s exclusive right to display his work, while the news outlets had argued that embedding tweets merely directed viewers to access the photograph on the servers of a third party (Twitter), and there was no unauthorised reproduction. The original tweet had been shared by the photographer himself. The settling of this dispute implies that, the question of whether embedding tweets amounts to copyright infringement may remain partly resolved for now.
Ai Weiwei Heads to Trial Against Volkswagen for Ad Featuring His Installation
A suit filed by renowned contemporary artist Ai Weiwei in 2017 in a Dutch Court against automobile maker Volkswagen for an advertisement featuring his work titled ‘Soleil Levant’ without his permission, is headed for a trial this week. The work, which covered the entire façade of a building, was an installation consisting of 3,500 life jackets, artistically arranged to look like the building was bursting with them. The life jackets were worn by refugees who fled their home countries for Lesvos, Greece. The ad features an orange car parked in front of the installation, and Weiwei claims this commercial exploitation of his work damages his credibility. On the other hand, Volkswagen conceded that it made a mistake in using his installation, and claimed that it has been trying to resolve the matter with him. The case raises interesting questions on works featured in the backdrop of commercial content, and may affect other cases involving similar claims against other companies which have featured works of art in ads without permission.
Apple Courts Legal Trouble with Vegas Billboard
Apple Inc. recently put up a billboard in the city of Las Vegas promoting privacy, which reads “What happens on your iPhone, stays in your iPhone.” On behalf of all users of Apple products, three people have filed a class action suit in a California court, alleging data breaches and false advertising by the iPhone maker. The suit alleges that Apple profits from collecting and releasing extensive demographic data it has about its users, including their full names, ages, addresses, and other details like their music preferences. The suit claims an aggregate amount of over USD 5 million, with the plaintiffs seeking roughly USD 250 for each affected user. The plaintiffs have included in their filing, details of information being available for purchase on a broker site. However, it is unclear whether the data is being sold by Apple or whether there are other parties involved in such transactions.
Licensing and Merchandising News
Daniel Wellington Unveils News Cricket World Cup Campaign
Renowned watch brand Daniel Wellington has launched a news campaign titled ‘#OurMomentIsNow’, aiming to bring cricket and film together in anticipation of the ongoing ICC Cricket World Cup. The brand has teamed up with Indian cricketers Dinesh Karthik, Kuldeep Yadav, Yuzvendra Chahal, and actor Ayushmann Khurrana. The brand will be releasing special cricket-themed watches for both men and women, with all customers receiving limited-edition Cricket Fan Boxes. The venture appears to be ideally timed for cricket-crazy Indians to connect with the brand and its ambassadors.
INOX to Screen India’s World Cup League Matches
Starting with India’s first match at the ICC World Cup in England on June 5th, cricket fans will have a unique opportunity to watch the exploits of the Men in Blue on the big screen. Theatre chain INOX Cinemas will be screening the 9 league-stage matches of India, the semi-finals, and finals on 25 screens across 12 cities in India. INOX is also considering increasing the number of screens based on ticket sales and public demand for more live screenings. The ICC World Cup, which is conducted once in four years, offers many such opportunities for brand to bring content and products to fans of Team India.
INOX is currently the only multiplex chain with a license for live screening, although other chains are also reported to be exploring this option. Despite the World Cup being a major draw at sports bars and restaurants, licenses are imperative. The ICC issues strict guidelines on each occasion on the use of its proprietary content, and regularly enforces its rights against unlicensed exploitation.
Snap in Licensing Talks for Embedding Music
Snap Inc., which owns multimedia messaging platform Snapchat, is in talks with major music labels to license songs for users to embed in posts. The deal would give users access to a broad catalog of songs to post on Snapchat, allowing Snap to compete with Facebook and Bytedance, who made similar deals over the last few months for their own apps. Facebook signed a deal with Sony Music Entertainment, Universal Music Group, and Warner Music Group, which allowed its users to include their music in Instagram Stories, Facebook posts, and Oculus. Bytedance acquired licenses for users to share music on its widely popular and controversial app TikTok, and is now extending these deals while it looks to launch its own music streaming service.
IP Update: BananaIP’s Fifteen Year Journey and Leadership in Entertainment Law
BananaIP was co-founded by Dr. Kalyan Kankanala in 2004, and as of this week, the firm has successfully completed fifteen years of IP Services. It started off as Brain League out of NSRCEL at IIMB, and was renamed as BananaIP in 2014. The firm’s entertainment law department is well known in the industry, and it works with some of the leading producers, record labels, actors, authors and performers. BananaIP’s clients include Anand Audio, Yash Raj, Dharma, Anushka Sharma, and Arka Media.
You may read about BananaIP’s accomplishments, its story and values at this link: https://www.bananaip.com/about-us/. Though the unique and catchy name of the firm was initially frowned by other sectors, the entertainment industry loved it. You may read a note about why the name BananaIP was coined here.
Author: BIP’s Copyright and Entertainment Law Attorneys
Led by Sanjeeth Hegde, Senior Partner, the entertainment law attorneys at BIP are among the well-known lawyers in the field. They work with clients such as Yash Raj Films, Dharma Productions, Ananda Audio, Anushka Sharma, Sushant Singh, and Arka Media (Producer of Bahu Bali). BIP’s entertainment law team helps clients protect, manage and effectively license and merchandise their creative works such as films, music, brands and other content, to maximize financial returns.
The weekly copyright and entertainment law news initiative is a part of their pro bono work, and is aimed at spreading entertainment law awareness. You are free to share the news with appropriate attribution and backlink to the source.
If you have any questions, you may write to BIP’s Copyright and Entertainment Law Attorneys – [email protected]