Protecting Creative Works in India Through Copyright Laws

Oct 232023
Protecting Creative Works in India Through Copyright Laws

Authors of original works of authorship such as literary works (including computer programmes, tables, compilations, computer databases expressed in words, codes, schemes, or in any other form, including a machine readable medium), dramatic, musical, and artistic works, cinematographic films, and sound recordings are all granted copyright protection under Indian law. In order to claim copyright on your work, you need to contact an Intellectual property lawyer India who knows everything about filing copyright cases.
Instead of protecting the ideas themselves, copyright law safeguards manifestations of ideas. Literary works, theatrical works, musical works, creative works, cinematograph films, and sound recordings all have copyright protection under Section 13 of the Copyright Act of 1957. For instance, the Act protects literary works such as books and computer programmes.

Copyright Law in India

The laws pertaining to copyright protection in India are governed by the Copyright Act, 1957 (Act) and the Copyright Rules. Ideas, facts, or concepts alone are not protected by copyright. Having said that, copyright safeguards the unique expression of knowledge and concepts. A claim for copyright may be made by the original creator, a person who has inherited the creator’s ownership rights, or the creator’s authorised agent.
The Copyright Act grants the author a financial right to make any cinematographic film or sound recording, to adapt the work, to translate it, to perform or communicate it to the public, and to issue copies of the work. A paternity right, which allows one to claim authorship of the work, an integrity right, which protects one’s honour and reputation, and a general right, which prevents one from having a work falsely claimed to be their own, are also provided for by the Act. Even after the copyright has been assigned, the author still retains these moral rights.

Copyright protection in India

  • Economic Rights of the author

Original literary, dramatic, musical, and creative works, as well as cinematographed films and sound recordings, are protected by copyright. The creators of the works mentioned above have economic rights under Section 14 of the Act. The rights are primarily reserved for literary, dramatic, and musical works, excluding computer programmes. These rights include the ability to publish copies of the work for distribution to the public, perform the work in public or communicate it to the public, make cinematograph films or sound recordings based on the work, and translate or adapt it in any way.
In the case of computer programmes, the author is also granted the freedom to offer any copy of the programme for sale or hire, sell it, whether it has previously been sold or rented, in addition to the rights mentioned above.

  • Moral Rights of the author

Section 57 of the Act defines the two basic moral rights of an author which are Right of paternity, and Right of integrity. The term “right of paternity” refers to an author’s ability to claim authorship of a work and to forbid any other parties from doing the same. The author’s right to integrity gives him the authority to stop actions that can harm his name or honour, such as distorting, mutilating, or otherwise altering his work.
The proviso to section 57(1) provides that the author shall not have any right to restrain or claim damages in respect of any adaptation of a computer program to which section 52 (1)(aa) applies (i.e. reverse engineering of the same). It must be noted that failure to display a work or to display it to the satisfaction of the author shall not be deemed to be an infringement of the rights conferred by this section.

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