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Posted by on Apr 27, 2014 in Copyright Act 1957 |

Copyright – Meaning, Term and Ownership, Copyright Office and Board

The Copyright is an exclusive right of a person or organization for its special work in any field and copyright act as a tool of promoting scientific temper in any country. But in context of transnational or international copyright, it is a most disputed problem in the world as Intellectual Property Rights (IPR’s) are still a confusing subject for WTO or UN.

Copyright Office & Board (Section 9-12)

  • The Central govt shall constitute a Copyright Office for purpose of this act and office shall be under superintendence of Registrar of Copyrights (ROC) appointed by Central govt.
  • The Central govt shall constitute a Copyright Board which shall consist of a Chairman and at least 2 members & not more than 14. The copyright board have powers equivalent to Civil Court.
  • The Board is entrusted with the task of adjudication of disputes pertaining to copyright registration, grant of Licenses in respect of works withheld from public, unpublished Indian works, production and publication of translations and works for certain specified purposes. It also hears cases in other miscellaneous matters instituted before it under the Copyright Act, 1957.

Copyright Meaning (Section 13-16)

  • The works in which copyright subsists are as follows:-
    • Original literary, dramatic, musical and artistic works;
    • Cinematography film and sound recordings;

Provided that no copyright is allowed if any of above work is in contravention of copyright of any other work such as any sound recording in literary work is not obeying copyrights of that work.

  • The Copyright provides exclusive rights for following acts:-

In case of Literary, Dramatic, Musical or artistic Work not being a computer programme

  • To make cinematography film/sound in respect of work;
  • To make translation or adaptation of work;
  • To reproduce work into any material form including storage in any electronic form; only artistic work can be depicted in 3D from 2D or vice versa;
  • To communicate or perform work in public.

In case of a Computer Programme

  • All above acts including offer for sale/rental of any copy of programme etc.

In case of Cinematography Film or Sound Recording

  • To make copy of film/sound including any photograph or image if any.
  • To sell or offer for sale of any copy of film/sound regardless of earlier sold copies;
  • To communicate film/recording in the public.

No provision of this act is applied to work related to design that already registered in Designs Act, 1911 or 2000. Any design of an article that not registered under designs act shall cease if reproduced 50 times by an industrial process by owner of copyright.

Ownership of Copyright & Right of Owner (Section 17-21)

  • The author of work shall be the first owner of copyright. In case of Literary, Dramatic or Artistic work made by author for employment such as an article written by author for publication in newspaper or magazine, proprietor shall be the first owner of copyright (in absence of any agreement to contrary) related to publication but in all other aspects author shall be the first owner of copyright.
  • Similarly, in case of a photograph taken or painting drawn or film made for showing valuable consideration of any person, such person shall be the first owner of copyright.
  • In case any author makes work for employment under a service of contract then the Employer shall be the first owner of copyright rather than creator. Suppose if any person delivers any speech to address public on behalf on other person then such other person shall be the first owner of copyright.
  • For any govt work, govt shall be the first owner of copyright (in absence of any agreement to contrary).
  • The author can assign its copyright existing work or future work to any person either fully or in part with time limits as may be determined. But assignment shall be effective only after existence of work.
  • In case of death of a testator/author before or after publication of work (literary, dramatic, musical or artistic), the copyrights of original work shall be transferred to bequest (future generations) if nothing specified by testator in his will.  

Term of Copyright (Section 22-29)

  • The copyrights of a literary, musical/dramatic or artistic work including a photograph shall subsist during lifetime of author and till 60 yrs after death of author. If joint ownership then 60 yrs shall be counted from death of last author.
  • The copyrights of a Film or Recording or Govt work shall subsist till 60 yrs from date of publication.
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