We at Singhwal, previously IP Services wing of Patracode specialize in providing end to end services in Copyright related transactions including Copyright registration, prosecution, management and monetisation through assignment or licensing and enforcement. Copyrightable subject matter includes music, literary works, software, art, sculptures, elevation of buildings and floor plans, cinema etc.
Copyright is a form of Intellectual Property Right which serves to ensure that the creators of artistic and literary works are able to financially benefit from their works. The idea is to prevent others from inequitably benefiting from the creators works. Copyright therefore provides for a limited monopoly over the commercial exploitation of the copyrighted works. Copyright is an intangible property right which can change hands in commercial transactions comparable to tangible property such as goods. Ownership of Copyright can also be transferred comparable to any other tangible property.
Copyright is granted for artistic and literary works including cinematographic films, sound recordings and software. For protection, the subject matter should be well expressed with all possible details, so as to create a differentiation between his works and that of others. The expressions shall further be strong enough to even create differentiation from the common pool of ideas. In jurisprudence, the copyright is governed from the doctrine of “sweat of brow”, which says that whoever has put in the effort for creating a work should be rewarded for the sweat before it reaches his brow. Simply, for this reason, the protection of Copyright is automatic and from the moment of inception or creation of the work.
Further, a society’s economic and social development depends on the number of creative minds it constitutes of, and more creative the work, the better for the society. Therefore protection of this intangible property is provided to encourage and motivate the creator of the original work to create more work. Copyright is an economic right, because exploitation of the Copyright-able work by himself or by licensing it for royalty may bring economic gain to the author. As per Indian Copyright law, generally, any work which is original and can be categorized as literary, dramatic, musical and artistic works are subject to copyright protection.
The protection of original work of authorship of any artistic work which can be musical work, cinematographic films, literary works, sound recordings, dramatic work, etc, is done with the help of filing for Copyrights, under the 1957 Copyright Act. Like patents and trademark, it is an intangible property. A Copyright protection gives an exclusive right to perform or authorize the performance of acts with respect to a work or any substantial part thereof.
They are further categorized and sub-categorized under the Copyright Act. More or less, all other jurisdictions have similar recognition of various types of similar matters which can be Copyright-able. The list of Copyright-able subject matter includes Original artistic works and musical work, dramatic compilations and literary works. Literary works are again of many types such as compilations of data and other subject matter, poetry, manuscripts, theses, dissertations, collective works, speeches, reports, bound volumes and loose-leaf volumes, textbooks, brochures, pamphlets, catalogs, directories, reference works, games, computer programs, software codes, automated databases, etc.
Artistic work will, in turn, include original works of art, which can be an engraving, a photograph, sculpture, painting, and even works of artistic craftsmanship, like architecture. Musical work would mean any original work in music which would include the representation of music which may be graphically notated, however, it would not include words or actions that are sung, spoken or performed with the music.
The computer Program includes computer software, algorithms, a machine-readable language, Cinematography film includes visuals of moving or non-moving images together with sound in a synchronous fashion. When it comes to protection of sound recording, the composer of the particular work is entitled exclusive rights to not just make a recording of the sounds embodying it, but can also agree for the sale or hire of the copies of that particular film in question.
The procedure for registration of a work under the Copyright Act, 1957 is to fill out an application stating the particulars for registration of copyright and further filing it along with a prescribed fee at Copyright Office at Delhi, India. Separate applications should be filed for registration of each separate work. If the application is filed by the advocate on behalf of the applicant, then a Power Of Attorney (PoA) has to be signed by both the advocate and the party and this PoA should be included with the filing application.
We provided Copyright registration services to creators and authors, and also assist our clients in acquiring artworks, authored works from the contractors, protecting them by filing for registration and enforcing them. We represent our clients in mediations, arbitrations and various dispute resolution mediums and forums in contentious and non-contentious fashion. We assist our clients in commercializing their Copyright and add value to them by generating a steady stream of revenue thorough licenses and assignments to achieve our client’s commercial goals with respect to a copyright-able or copyrighted subject matter. Our client base comprises of various industrial segments, like Software, Entertainment, Publishing, Consumer Goods, Multimedia, etc.
We have a network of international associates through whom we represent our clients in all major jurisdictions globally. Copyright filing, prosecution, overcoming objections and oppositions are all handled by our group of competent and enthusiastic Attorneys.
We work with Content creators and production houses to raise awareness about Copyright and its economic value. We help evolve and establish best practices at the workplace so as to ensure that the content creators themselves act in a manner consistent with the global best practices and minimise the possibility of Copyright related lapses. There are a notable instances where copyrighted content has been leaked directly from the source as opposed to be being exploited by way of unauthorised breach of access restrictions. Therefore it is of immense importance that the creators and the staff who have access to the copyrightable or copyrighted content treat it with utmost care and preserve the sanctity attached to it under the Copyright system.
We also work closely with our clients to understand their business strategies which often influence their Copyright filing, licensing, assignment and enforcement related decision making. Artistic work especially cinematic and literature has gained a global consumer base and it is not necessary that the consumer of the content is based in the same jurisdiction as the creator. Therefore international Copyright filing, monetisation and enforcement also becomes a crucial aspect of the entire exercise.
We work with our clients based on their inputs regarding the scope for monetisation and accordingly identify and file copyrights internationally across all prominent jurisdictions. We have a network of associates in all major international IP jurisdiction who are reliable experts in the Copyright system of their respective countries. This enables us to deliver quality legal services at a value proposition.
We also add value to our client’s business by assisting in drafting assignment agreements which best protect our client’s interest and maximise returns on the investment. Assignment is a process of ownership of the copyright without the moral right to attribution and authorship of the underlying work. Licensing is an important tool for monetising the copyright. Licensing can be achieved either independently and directly between the two consenting parties or can be routed through a copyright society if the owner of the copyright is a member of such a society.
Where necessary we execute cross licensing agreements so as to ensure that both the parties enter into a working relation of mutual benefit. Our experienced Copyright Attorneys are constantly studying and evaluating the legal landscape in all major jurisdictions to ensure that the clients are given prompt and high quality service consistently.
We are specialized to deal with complex matters where we support our clients in expressing of the copyrights for whose adaptations they shall be going to use or practice further. It is an intensive task to support clients to write a Business Plan, Operational Plans, Methodologies, Methodological flow of business processes which are implemented through software, schematic representation of computer or software implemented product, any other type of aspects which is considered as algorithms, mental acts, methods and non-protect-able under patents, and other types of composite work which shall be separated out to provide a better protection.
We undergo various iterations to help them copyrighted and further filed and registered for appropriate protection. In case, any subject matter is licence-able, we support our clients to develop whole legal framework for licensing and franchising the subject matter and further help them to implement it, which includes working over with the clients to crystallize business model to fill up all possible legal loopholes, drafting licensing or franchising agreement or any other related business agreement which is appropriate, helping negotiate the agreement with the licensing prospect, and further getting the agreement executed, once the agreement is operational, we support in keeping timelines and terms against each of the parties so the executed legal instrument is affected.
We are especially adept at dealing with copyright filing in Software, its licensing and assignment with specific reference and relevance to the booming software industry. Our Attorneys are not only well versed in Law but also possess prowess in technology and its application in real world situations. We have worked closely with start-ups and companies alike in protecting applications, websites, software suits and databases under the Copyright system. Software codes hold immense economical value and we guide our client as to the best way to ensure that the economic value is protected and optimally exploited by the copyright owners. Our Attorneys understanding of technology and its challenges has been especially beneficial to our clients from the software sector who have long felt the need for technically qualified lawyers to work on their software codes. Our clients from the technology domain find it especially enriching to work with us on issues relating to Open Source licensing in software which is fast growing in prominence and presence given the push received to the open source developer community from multinational corporations such as Google, Apple, Facebook and Microsoft.
To be able to advise clients in matters relating to Open Source Licenses is a major advantage we bring to the table over others when it comes to technology law. Our clients are especially comfortable and even insistent in working with us given our ability to communicate with them on a technical level and simply legal issues and their specific legal implications on their technology and therefore their business decision making. Our clients increasing approach us not only for registration and enforcement related services but also for advice to formulate better business models and more effectively expand their business footprint globally whilst remaining competitive in the market. We have undertaken carious case studies to identify the best suited approach to various business scenarios and have been a key contributor in this space. Copyright related due diligence and valuation is also something we specialise in. Given the rise of start-ups in India, Intellectual Property right valuation is increasing becoming important in establishing the true valuation of the start-ups.
We at Singhwal have established its credentials as a reliable and value enriching partner for Content creators and producers alike and our growth as an organisation bears testimony to the trust our clients and associated put in us as a firm.