Copyright Law Changes in India

In June of this year, the Copyright (Amendment) Act 2012 came into force in India.

The changes in the law may mark the start of a period of uncertaintly for the Indian entertainment industry as bodies with conflicting interests battle out their differing views on how the amendments should be interpreted.

A copy of the new amendment can be found here. The original Copyright Act 1957 text can be found here.

For an interesting overview of the changes please see pages 20-36 in SoundBox India – June 2012 issue, a link to which can be found here.

Big Brother Looked At

The 2nd Authority for Television and Radio, Israel’s commercial TV and Radio regulator, has commenced looking into the psychiatric treatment that is given to participants in the Israeli version of the hit prime time reality TV show “Big Brother“.

Israeli news has been flooded in recent days with the revelations that some of the participants in the “Big Brother” show were allegedly given psychiatric medicine.

Keshet, the broadcaster of the show has been asked to provide clarifications and information with regard to the matter.

The 2nd Authority for Television and Radio has said that the newspaper reports in this matter are a cause for concern and that it will look into the way participants are chosen, the medical treatment they receive and the extent of the medical treatment actually dispensed during the show.

According to an article by Shelly Pritzker of Calcalist published on the 2nd Authority for Television and Radio’s website, Keshet has stated that in the current season of the program, psychiatric treatment and medicine were not required for this season of the program and that all in all, out of one hundred participants of the program to date, only 6 have required such treatment, and that this number is lower than the national average.

Pinterest’s popularity soars, but copyright questions abound

Pinterest is a “virtual pinboard” that “lets you organize and share all the beautiful things you find on the web.” Pinterest’s sole function is to provide a network of virtual pinboards and a means for its users to “pin” photos to them. Unlike Facebook, YouTube, and Twitter, Pinterest isn’t about user-generated content. Beyond the ability for users to comment on their pins, Pinterest is about aggregation of third-party content.

Most social networking site operators happily rely on the “safe harbor” afforded them by the Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA). In this respect, Pinterest appears to have its procedural ducks in a row. It has a designated copyright agent, displays the DMCA notice and take-down procedure, and has a clear copyright policy.

Copyright matters though are about to become its biggest concern, and in this respect Pinterest has taken additional steps to preclude copyright infringement. Pinterest has developed a “nopin” meta tag, which site owners can use to disable the Pin It applet on their websites, thus preventing Pinterest users from easily pinning photos from that site to their pinboards.  

So what is next for Pinterest? Is its sudden popularity merely the flashpoint for copyright woes that will sink the site as quickly as it appeared? Can it find a way to allow its users to retain the freedom to pin and simultaneously appease copyright owners? Or does Pinterest represent something else entirely — a new breed of social networking heralding an era of “relaxed” copyright protection? For full article see Pinterest’s popularity soars, but (p)interesting copyright questions abound – Lexology.

Megaupload Shutdown and Cloud Trouble

The recent Megaupload shutdown by the US Dept. of Justice may highlight some of the troubles with cloud computing.

Users of the Megaupload storage service could not access legitimate files after the shutdown.This means that users should have had backups of their files in order to avoid such a scenario. And I thought cloud computing came to replace backups…

In order to avoid such scenarios, it is important to check out the terms of use of any such service so as to ascertain who owns the files uploaded and how can one access them, particularly in shutdown scenarios.

In order to gain consumer confidence, Cloud based services will need to alleviate these “physical” concerns for users. When one adds this to the concerns consumers have over Cloud security,  then Cloud based services still have some way to go and educating to do so as to make cloud based services an integral part of consumers’ digital second nature…

Data Protection In Israel – The Israeli Law, Information and Technology Authority

The Israeli Law, Information and Technology Authority (ILITA), was established by the Ministry of Justice ofIsrael in September 2006 to become Israel’s data protection authority.

The mission of ILITA is to reinforce personal data protection, regulate the use of electronic signatures, and increase the enforcement of privacy and IT-related offences.

ILITA website.

Legislation.

 

Louis Vuitton Sues Warner Bros

Warner Bros. is facing accusations that it showed counterfeit luggage in a hit movie.

In a complaint filed in NY last week, luxury goods maker Louis Vuitton accused Warner Bros of ignoring its instructions not to use a fake handbag in an airport scene in the Hangover II. In the scene, Alan (played by Zach Galifianakis) carries luggage marked LVM and warns another character “Careful, that is.. that is a Louis Vuitton.”

According to the complaint, the item in question is not in fact a Louis Vuitton but was instead made by a Chinese American firm called Diophy. Louis Vuitton is currently suing Diophy before the International Trade Commission in the hopes of getting its knock-off products banned from the United States…( For full article see Joe Mullin/Paid Content)

The Essentials of Design

In the UK’s Intellectual Property Office’s website there is a short and interesting overview of the law of Designs: “…The law of designs has  a long  history dating back to the latter part of the 18th century. Originally introduced to protect the designing  and printing of linens and cottons, design law has been extended over the years to cover functional  as well as decorative articles. Designs are applied to a great variety of products from different areas  of industry, from complex instruments such as machines, vehicles, engines and architectural structures  to simple everyday articles such as clothes, jewellery, toys and furniture…” (For full page see UK IPO website).

A short guide for applicants of how to register a design in Israel can be found in the Israeli Patents Office website.

 

UK Government To Review Film Policy

The UK government is to review its film policy through an independent panel of UK film experts including members of the board of the BFI.

According to a statement in the Department for Culture, Media & Sport‘s website: “…The panel will look across the UK film industry, considering film development and production, distribution and exhibition; as well as considering inward investment and film export…”.

 

Access Industries To Acquire Warner Music Group

Warner Music Group and Access Industries, the U.S.-based industrial group, announced the execution of a definitive merger agreement under which Access Industries will acquire WMG in an all-cash transaction valued at $3.3 billion. The purchase includes WMG’s entire recorded music and music publishing businesses (Access Industries Statement).

It is interesting to see how such a merger will effect licensee and distributor relationships worldwide. That, may depend on the interests Access has in media companies around the world. To take the Israeli example, Warner has been represented by several entities over the years, including Hed Arzi Group and now Lev Group Media. But, Access has a stake  in R.G.E. Group Ltd., a media group based in Israel. Does this mean that a change in local representation for Warner in Israel is looming?