It is not possible to segregate copyright and neighbouring rights so as to
provide a separate legal regime for protection of neighbouring rights.
International developments in this area of intellectual property have created so
much trade interest that intellectual property organization and WTO stand
together on this issue protection and compel the member countries to bring their
domestic laws in conformity with international commitment that facilities trade.
The world looks ahead to WIPO webcasting treaty in order to see a bright dawn of
the neighbouring rights protection regime. In this paper an attempt has been
made highlight and identify protection regime for the neighbouring rights under
the copyrights act 1957, in India. The paper also explains the concept of
neighbouring rights its Indian context and the protection regime loopholes and
remedies. A separate publication, Understanding Industrial Property, offers an
equivalent introduction to the subject of industrial property, including patents
for inventions, industrial designs, trademarks and geographical indications.
Scope of these rights
In India the copyright act 1957( as amended in 1999) the rules made under and
international copy right order 1999, govern copyright and neighbouring rights.
Before disclosing the nice ties of neighbouring rights protection in india, it
is pertinent to note that Indian law might require closer scrutiny and re
looking in the light of recently concluded WIPO treaty on broadcasters right.
The wipo standing committee on coyright and related rights has given shape to
the world first webcasting treaty that rein forces mandates of rome convention
in widest possible language.
Limitations and Exception to the right
There are several types of limitations and exceptions to copyright protection.
First, certain categories of works are excluded from copyright protection. In
some countries, works are excluded from protection if they are not fixed in a
For example, a work of choreography would only be protected once
the movements were written down in dance notation or recorded on videotape. In
some countries, the texts of laws as well as court and administrative decisions
are excluded from copyright protection. Second, certain particular acts of
exploitation that usually require the right owner's permission may, under
circumstances specified in the law, be carried out without the owner's
The two basic types of limitations and exceptions in this category are:
- free use, which carries no obligation to compensate the right owner for the use of the work without permission;
- non-voluntary (or compulsory) licenses, which require that compensation be paid to the right owner for non-authorized exploitation.
Benefits for Developing Countries
Finally, mention should be made of the relationship between the protection of
copyright and related rights and the interests of developing countries. Many
developing countries have vibrant, thriving cultural and creative industries in
everything from music to visual arts, to video games and films. WIPO studies
have shown that the culture and creative industries make significant
contributions to developing country economies. Without protection for copyright
and related rights, the economic benefits from these works would not always
remain in or return to the country in which they originated. Therefore,
protection of copyright and related rights serves the twin objectives of
preserving and developing national culture and providing a means for commercial
exploitation in national and international markets.
The interest of developing countries in the protection of copyright and related
rights goes beyond development of domestic cultural industries into the realm of
international trade and development. The extent to which a country protects IP
rights is inextricably linked to that country's potential to benefit from the
rapidly expanding international trade in goods and services protected by such
rights. For example, the convergence of telecommunications and computer
infrastructure leads to international investment in many sectors of developing
country economies, including IP. Protection of copyright and related rights has
thus become part of a much larger picture: it is a necessary precondition for
participation in the system of international trade and investment.
The Role of WIPO
WIPO is an international organization dedicated to promoting creativity and
innovation by ensuring that the rights of creators and owners of IP are
protected worldwide, and that inventors and authors are recognized and rewarded
for their ingenuity. As a specialized agency of the United Nations, WIPO
provides a forum for its member states to create and harmonize rules and
practices for protecting IP rights.
Many member states have protection systems that are centuries old, although
those systems may require updating to address rapid technological change, while
other countries continue to develop new legal and administrative frameworks to
protect their patents, trademarks and copyright. WIPO assists its member states
in developing these new systems through treaty negotiation, legal and technical
assistance, and training in various forms, including in the area of enforcement
of IP rights.
The field of copyright and related rights has expanded
dramatically as technological developments have enabled new ways of
disseminating creations worldwide through such means as satellite broadcasting,
compact discs, DVDs, and streaming and downloading from the Internet. WIPO is
closely involved in the ongoing international debate to shape new standards for
copyright protection in cyberspace. 35 Understanding Copyright and Related
Rights WIPO administers the following international treaties on copyright and
- Berne Convention for the Protection of Literary and Artistic Works (1886)
- Rome Convention for the Protection of Performers, Producers of Phonograms and Broadcasting Organizations (1961) (administered with ILO and UNESCO)
- Geneva Convention for the Protection of Producers of Phonograms Against Unauthorized Duplication of Their Phonograms (1971)
- Brussels Convention Relating to the Distribution of Programme-Carrying Signals Transmitted by Satellite (1974)
- WIPO Copyright Treaty (WCT) (1996)
- WIPO Performances and Phonograms Treaty (WPPT) (1996)
- Beijing Treaty on Audiovisual Performances (2012, not yet in force)
- Marrakesh Treaty to Facilitate Access to Published Works for Persons Who Are
Blind, Visually Impaired or Otherwise Print Disabled (2013) The WIPO Arbitration
and Mediation Center provides services for the resolution of international IP
disputes between private parties. Such proceedings can include contractual
disputes (such as patent and software licenses, trademark coexistence
agreements, and research and development agreements) and non-contractual
disputes (such as patent infringement). The Center is also recognized as the
leading dispute resolution service provider for disputes related to Internet
Ownership, Exercise and Transfer of Copyright
The owner of copyright in a work is generally, at least in the first instance,
the creator of a work, i.e., the author. However, this is not always the case.
The Berne Convention, in Article 14bis, contains rules for determining initial
ownership of rights in cinematographic works. Certain national laws also provide
that where a work is created by an author employed for the purpose of creating
that work, the employer, not the author, is the owner of the copyright in that
As noted above, however, in general moral rights belong to the individual
author of a work regardless of who owns the economic rights. The laws of many
countries provide that the initial right owner may transfer all economic rights
in a work to a third party, although often moral rights cannot be transferred.
Authors may transfer the economic rights in their works to individuals or
companies best able to market them, in return for payment.
Such payments are
often made dependent on actual use of the works and are referred to as
royalties. Transfer of copyright may take one of two forms: assignment and
licensing. An assignment is a transfer of a property right. Under an assignment,
the right owner transfers the right to authorize or prohibit certain acts
covered by one, several or all rights under copyright.
The person to whom the
rights are assigned becomes the new copyright owner or right holder. Copyright
rights are divisible, so it is possible to have multiple right owners for the
same or different rights in the same work. In some countries, an assignment of
copyright is not legally possible, and only licensing is allowed.
means that the copyright owner retains ownership but authorizes a third party to
carry out certain acts covered by the economic rights, generally for a specific
period of time and for a specific purpose. For example, the author of a novel
may grant a publisher a license to make and distribute copies of the novel.
the same time, the author may grant a license to a film producer to make a film
based on the novel. Licenses may be exclusive, with the right owner agreeing not
to authorize any other party to carry out the licensed acts; or non-exclusive,
which means the right owner may authorize others to carry out the same licensed
acts. A license, unlike an assignment, does not generally convey the right to
authorize others to carry out acts covered by economic rights.
Taking reference for the international protection regime of copyright and
related righs it becomes pertinent to state that on the international level.
The area of neighbouring rights needs enhanced protection under the Indian legal
regime of copy rights. It is manifest that proposed WIPO treaty on webcasting
would definitely influence the Indian legal on parameters of neighbouring rights
protection and Indian law shall accommodate he changes perpetuated by
technological development through passage of time.