Delhi High Court: Concept Note Cannot be Protected Under Copyright Law; Facebook Gets La Liga Rights in Eight Countries; Delhi High Court Asks Facebook, Google to Take Down Videos Defaming Patanjali; IMPALA Asks EU Regulators to Block Sony’s $2.6B Deal to Own EMI Music Publishing; Reliance Launches Little Singham Mobile Game; Diageo to Launch Game of Thrones Whiskey.
COPYRIGHT QUOTE OF THE WEEK
“We live in a world where value of creativity is measured by commercial success, and copyrights are mere instruments of financial benefit, not creative progress” – Dr. Kalyan C. Kankanala
INDIAN COPYRIGHT STATISTICS
There is an increase of 7% in the total number of copyright applications filed last week compared to the applications filed in the previous week. A total of 253 applications were filed for copyright registration. Most of the applications were filed for literary and artistic works. Applications for software works increased substantially from 27 to 41.
|S. No||Types of Work||Number of Applications filed in the Previous Week
(30th July to 5th August, 2018)
|Number of Applications filed in the Recent Week
(6th August to 12th August, 2018)
|1.||Literary Work||126||125||1||1% Decrease|
|2.||Musical Work||6||7||1||1% Increase|
|3.||Artistic Work||90||72||18||20% Decrease|
|4.||Cinematograph Film||4||1||3||75% Decrease|
|5.||Sound Recording||7||7||0||No Change|
INDIAN COPYRIGHT NEWS
Delhi High Court: Concept Note Cannot be Protected Under Copyright Law
In the Delhi High Court case of Sanjay Kumar Gupta & Anr vs. Sony Pictures Networks India Pvt Ltd, Sanjay Kumar had filed a suit against Sony for copyright infringement with respect to his registered copyright for a concept called Jeeto Unlimited (“Jeeto”). Jeeto is an arrangement whereby home viewers of a quiz show are able to participate live, answer the same questions that are put to the contestants and being rewarded for the correct answer. He had shared with Sony the “concept note” with a consent letter stating that Sony would have the freedom to use the concept without incurring any liability.
The Court observed that the subject matter concept existed in the public domain for a substantial period, and therefore is not entitled to copyright protection. Also, he had signed a consent letter authorizing Sony to use this concept, which could not be challenged. The court held that under provisions of the Copyright Act, copyright protection extends only to a concrete expression of a concept, not to the underlying concept or idea itself. Therefore, a concept note cannot be protected under Copyright Act.
Facebook Gets La Liga Rights in Eight Countries
Facebook Inc. has bought exclusive live rights to show Spanish league soccer in the Indian subcontinent under a deal with Eleven Sports. Under the three-year agreement, Facebook will have the right to broadcast around 380 matches of Spain’s La Liga to users in eight countries including India, Pakistan, Sri Lanka, Afghanistan, Bangladesh, and Bhutan. Facebook is willing to increase its sports offerings to attract more people to the platform and get them to stay on it longer.
In 2018, Facebook hired Eurosport CEO Peter Hutton, to help it broker worldwide live-streaming deals.
Delhi High Court Asks Facebook, Google to Take Down Videos Defaming Patanjali
In a suit filed against an ex-employee of Divya Pharmacy, a unit of Patanjali, the Delhi High Court passed an interim order asking Google, Facebook, and YouTube to take down videos and all other content that allegedly defamed Patanjali and its founder Baba Ramdev. The videos made several claims against Ramdev and also accused Patanjali of adulteration of its products.
Patanjali’s legal counsel has also raised concerns about social media platforms not having a “fair mechanism” to remove defamatory content and reduce heavy litigation cost.
INTERNATIONAL COPYRIGHT NEWS UPDATE
IMPALA Asks EU Regulators to Block Sony’s $2.6B Deal to Own EMI Music Publishing
The Independent Music Companies Association (IMPALA) has filed an objection before the European Commission against Sony’s petition to fully acquire EMI Music Publishing. In its submission, IMPALA notes that the deal would double the number of songs Sony controls from 2.16 million to 4.21 million and that, combined with EMI, Sony “would be the biggest and most formidable music company in the world.” An IMPALA executive stated that the deal would be seismic, giving Sony the power to dictate terms and capture the market.
Although the deal would add significantly to Sony’s revenue, the regulators would also consider factors like the number of songs Sony would control and the number of songwriters it would have signed to publishing deals.
Completion of the transaction would put Sony in a position to strike deals using its clout on both sides of its music operations, publishing and recorded music. However, IMPALA maintains that blocking the deal would lead to more cultural diversity and consumer choice in the music industry.
MERCHANDISING AND LICENSING NEWS
Reliance Launches Little Singham Mobile Game
Reliance Entertainment’s subsidiary Zapak recently launched a mobile game based on Discovery Kids’ TV series “Little Singham”. The hit animated series is jointly produced by Rohit Shetty Picturez and Reliance Animation. According to Zapak, the game is an extension to the fun and frolic the successful series has delivered. The ‘runner’ game became a massive hit just after its launch and has been played for about 50 million minutes and 67 million runs with 3 million downloads within two weeks of its launch.
Diageo to Launch Game of Thrones Whiskey
Diageo and HBO have recently entered into a licensing deal under which Diageo will release 8 special single malt whiskeys, each named for a different house from the Game of Thrones world. The launch of these special edition whiskeys will coincide with the television launch of Game of Thrones season 8 next year. In addition to these 8 single malt whiskeys, Diageo will also release Johnnie Walker’s special White Walker edition.
This is not the first time that HBO is relying on alcoholic beverages to monetize its famous television series. HBO has previously partnered independently with Australia-based Common Ventures and California-based Vintage Wine Estates to create customized wines based on the Houses in the series. HBO has also partnered with Brewery Ommegang to create limited-edition beers, and is looking to continue the trend with Diageo.
Using a substantial portion of someone’s song or video as is, even for critique or commentary, amounts to infringement and is not covered under the ‘Fair Use’ exceptions.
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]