What is Copyright?

Copyright is the legal protection given to a person’s creation of intellectual labor. A creation which is born out of a person’s creative and intellectual labor can be given the protection of copyright. The protection of copyright is given in respect of the following works:

1) Literary works
2) Dramatic or musical works
3) Artistic works
4) Cinematographic works

Any original work in these fields can be given copyright protection, provided it passes the tests laid down for the grant of copyright.

What can be copyrighted?

Copyright can be granted to works which involve the creative and intellectual labor of a person. The copyright protection is granted with respect to literary, artistic, dramatical, musical and cinematographic works. These may also include:

● Books or novels
● Poems
● Adaptations
● Plays
● Songs
● Musical compositions
● Paintings and drawings
● Graphic designs
● Photographs
● Videos and movies
● Scripts
● Computer software codes

What are the rights of a copyright holder?

A person who gets his or her work copyrighted also gets two types of rights inherent to the copyright:
● Economic Rights
● Moral Rights

Economic rights are the type of rights of the copyright holder which enable the person to reap monetary or economic benefits out of the creation by way of reproduction, sales, licensing, distribution, etc. through fees, royalties, charges, sales amount etc. The copyright of a person is legally enforceable and enables the person to control all the aspects of distribution as well as prevent infringement of such copyright by other people. The moral rights of the copyright holder include the right of paternity, which gives the creator of the work to claim authorship over such work, and the right to integrity, which is the right given to the holder to prevent any kind of distortion or changing of the work which could potentially damage the honour and reputation of the person.

What are the legal remedies available for copyright infringement?

A copyright holder gets two types of remedies in case of copyright infringement, civil and criminal.

Under the civil remedies, a person can get three types of remedies:
● Injunctions
● Accounts of Profits
● Damages

Under the criminal remedies, the owner of the copyright can pursue criminal proceedings against the infringer of the copyright. The reliefs in such a case include:
● Imprisonment up to 3 years but, not less than 6 months
● Fine which may not be less than 50,000 but, may extend up to 2,00,000
● Search and seizure of infringing goods and delivery of infringing goods to copyright owner

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