Threat to Right to Liberty, Piracy Warning for FIFA World Cup, 2018, AT&T Acquired Time Warner, and more.

Sony issues piracy warnings ahead of the FIFA World Cup, 2018, to be held at Russia, Maharashtra Class Owners’ Association appeals against Textbook Copyright Policy, AT&T announced the successful mega-acquisition of Time Warner at $85 billion, La Liga champions FC Barcelona to form its own company BLM to manage their retail, licensing and merchandising right.


You will only have copyright in a society that places a very high value on the individual, the individual intellect, the products of individual intellect. – Tim Parks


There is a significant increase of 66.53% in the number of copyright applications filed this week as compare to the applications filed last week. A total of 423 applications were filed for copyright registration during the last week. Most of the applications were filed for literary and artistic works. Applications for cinematograph film also increased substantially from 3 to 10.

S. No. Types of Work Number of Applications in Previous Week (28th May-3rd June, 2018) Number of Applications filed in the Recent Week (4th June- 10th June,2018) Percent Change
1. Literary Work 147 171 16.32%
2. Musical Work 5 13 160%
3. Artistic Work 52 138 165.38%
4. Cinematograph Film 3 10 233.33%
5. Sound Recording 8 13 62.5%
6. Software 39 78 100%
  Total 254 423 66.53%


Sony issues piracy warnings ahead of the FIFA World Cup, 2018, to be held at Russia

As the most awaited sports tournament in the world kicked off on Thursday, June 14, Sony ESPN, an exclusive broadcasting right-holder in FIFA World Cup, issued preemptive warnings to illicit streaming sites through an Indian anti-piracy law firm MarkScan across India, Bangladesh, Bhutan, Maldives, Nepal, Pakistan and Sri Lanka. The warning notices sent out to these websites states Sony’s exclusivity in rights related to broadcasting, re-broadcasting, transmitting, re-transmitting, viewership or communication to public of the FIFA 2018 matches and the mediums such as internet, mobile, cable, satellite, terrestrial, IPTV network, television, radio etc. through which it could exercise its granted rights. Further, it has clearly stated that in case of any breach of abovementioned rights, it shall be compelled to initiate civil or criminal against an infringer.

Maharashtra Class Owners’ Association appeals against Textbook Copyright Policy

The Maharashtra Class Owners’ Association appealed in writing to the Chief Minister of Maharashtra for relief from the textbook Policy which require private publishers to obtain a license from the state bureau BalBharati.
MAHARASHTRA STATE BUREAU OF TEXTBOOK PRODUCTION AND CURRICULUM RESEARCH “BALBHARATI” had earlier announced a policy wherein it planned to copyright its books in order to prevent commercialization. Private publishers were irked by the restrictions on releasing supplementary books containing excerpts from the Balbharati textbooks. Deepak Sheth, secretary, association of publishers and distributors, expressed concern that the license fees would get passed on to the consumers, and could make the textbooks unaffordable for some students. The Association has requested for the policy to be implemented from next year, with automatic licensing and reasonable license fees.


Article 13 of Directive for Copyright in the Digital Single Market Directive, UK: Threat to Right to Liberty?

In the upcoming week, key European Parliament JURI committee will vote upon the enforcement of proposals made by the European Commission for the first overhaul of EU copyright law since 2001. As described by the various experts and jurists from different fields of industry, the proposal if turned into law, would inflict serious harm on the way internet functions across the Europe and around the world. The controversial Article 13 of the directives mandate ISPs of user uploaded materials to crosscheck the content in their database before uploading to prevent the copyright infringement. Earlier, the service providers used to enjoy protection under EUs e-commerce law on the ground of being a mere provider of a platform for users to share their content. If such proposal is accepted and enacted, legally it would leave internet service providers with two options, i.e., either they enter into a licensing agreement for the uploaded content or they shall remove the content’s availability if such content found to be in violation of copyright of its owner. However, it would be interesting to see how the JURI committee goes about voting session considering its implication on the most common activities undertaken by mass on an Internet.


AT&T announced the successful mega-acquisition of Time Warner at $85 billion

Two days after the US Federal Judge gave its nod to AT&T and Time Warner merger, AT&T made it official that the company would be acquiring Time Warner for a whopping amount of $85 billion, which makes it fifth most expensive merger post 2010 and ninth most expensive merger of all time. An injunction suit was filed by the Trump Justice Department stating that the said merger would be contrary to anti-trust laws and jack up costs to consumers for streaming TV and movies. However, U.S. District Judge Richard Leon green-lit the merger founding it to be in no violation of prevailing anti-trust laws. Now AT&T would be in direct control of CNN, HBO, the Warner Bros. movie studio, “Game of Thrones”, coveted sports programming and other “must-see” shows. The phone and pay-tv giant would be focusing on competing with its new-born rival such Amazon and Google. The deal would have a great implication on entertainment industry as it would open the floodgates for such deals by other media houses. However, with regards to the appeal to the higher court, the Trump Justice Department has not confirmed it yet but have showed a slight possibility. Nonetheless, it would be interesting to observe how this deal becomes an ice-breaker for the other media houses in the entertainment industry.

La Liga champions FC Barcelona to form its own company BLM to manage their retail, licensing and merchandising right

As the contract with FCB Merchandising, a company owned by Nike managing FC Barcelona’s merchandising rights for last 16 years, is due to expire on July 1st, FC Barcelona formed its own company Barca Licensing and Merchandising (BLM), a company wholly owned by the Spanish soccer outfit, will take charge for 2018/19 season. This will result into greater economic profitability, direct control of the brand, the possibility of offering out fans a 100 per cent Barca experience and boost to innovation and new technologies, as reports by Sportspromedia. Currently, the Barcelona’s merchandising business consists of own stores, 15 licensed stores, 328 licensees and over 250 workers. According to the reports by the club, there are more than 7000 contributing to an annual turnover of around €65 million.


It is a myth that copyright law only protects books, articles, reports and other “big” things under the ambit of literary works. Law does not differentiate between the intellectual creations of people based on the length of their creation.  Under literary works copyright laws protects expression of original ideas in tangible form, irrespective of its length. For claiming copyright protection there is no minimum limits of words or characters. This means that short works like quotes, jokes, short poems, etc. may also get same protection as that of books and novels. There are many instances in which comedians have accused other comedians for copying their jokes. Beware the next time you copy and post someone else’s short content on your social media account without attribution.

Author: BIP’s Copyright and Entertainment Law Attorneys

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].

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