The menace of online piracy is increasing by the day and causes widespread copyright infringement. Piracy is the unauthorized duplication of an original recording for commercial gain without the consent of the right owner. It costs the Music Industry and the Government millions of rupees each year.
Taking initiative in eradicating this illegal activity, last week the Indian Music Industry (IMI), a consortium of 142 music companies including several prominent regional and national labels, obtained orders from the Calcutta High Court directing Internet Service Providers (ISPs) to block access to 104 music sites from India infringing music copyright (List of website available here Medianama). The orders direct a total of 387 ISPs to block access to the 104 websites within 36 hours of date of intimation. These websites illegally allow the downloading of songs which results in piracy.
The high court order restrained the ISPs from reproducing, adopting, distributing, communicating, transmitting, disseminating or displaying in any manner infringing the copyright in sound recordings belonging to the IMI member companies.
A similar case that came to light not long ago was that of blocking of the website www.songs.pk where again the Calcutta High Court had granted an ex- parte injunction restraining a number of Internet Service Providers (ISPs) from providing access to the website. This website too illegally allowed free downloading of songs, promoting online piracy.
However, at the time this article was going to press, we sample checked some of these websites and attempted download. The websites are working in perfect order and still allow downloading of songs. Further, on checking the website www.songs.pk, we found that we were re-directed to another domain name www.songspk.pk where again, the downloading of music was allowed. This example of the website www.songs.pk, reappearing on another domain name, shows how the domain name owners are able to find their way around the order of blocking a domain name and continue the illegal activity of copyright infringement. This alone stands as a glaring example of wasted effort and continued online piracy.
Ms Deepika Vijay Sawhney, Partner and
Ms Stuti Bansal, Associate,
Corporate Professionals, Advocates & Solicitors