A Simple Guide to Copyright (part 2)
Two types of copyright for music
- The composition — which is usually a combination of the music [“musical works”] and lyrics [“literary works”] and is commonly owned by songwriters or by publishers.
- The sound recording — which is a recorded version of music and lyrics, and is usually owned by artistes or by music companies.
When do you own your copyright?
For all practical purposes, you own your musical copyright the moment you capture the composition or recording on a fixed medium, like composing a melody and storing it onto your mobile phone or writing lyrics on a sheet of paper.
Through my growing days, it was advised by seniors within the music fraternity then that, as an author or as a musician, sending a copy of the composition or recording to yourself by post, and leaving the envelope sealed with the date clearly marked on it was sufficient proof of your ownership, should a situation arise for your creation/recording being challenged/contested by a third party.
Why would you want to register your copyright?
The thought process then was that the postmark on the envelope would provide sufficient proof/evidence that the creation/recording was indeed yours. However, as on date, this thought process has been rendered virtually obsolete, even though copyright is automatic once the work has been created and it does not require any formality.
However, the issuance of a certificate of registration of copyright, following relevant entries being recorded by the Copyright Office, serves as prima facie evidence in a court of law and by digital platforms with reference to any dispute relating to ownership.
If you want to register a copyright for your musical work or for your sound recording, please approach the Copyright Office, which is accessible online: copyright.gov.in.
The procedure for registration is as below:
a) Application for registration is to be made on Form XIV (Including Statement of Particulars and Statement of Further Particulars) as prescribed in the first schedule to the Rules;
b) Separate applications should be made for registration of each work;
c) Each application should be accompanied by the requisite fee prescribed in the second schedule to the Rules (see “Fees payable” below);
d) The applications should be signed by the applicant. Alternatively and, if required, a Power of Attorney signed by the applicant and accepted by an advocate representing the applicant could be enclosed.
e) The fee is to be paid either in the form of Demand Draft or by an Indian Postal Order favouring “Registrar Of Copyrights, New Delhi” or through E payment.
The fees payable for the registration of copyrights are detailed below:
For an application for COMPULSORY LICENSE
|1.||For a license to republish a Literary, Dramatic, Musical or Artistic work (Sections 31, 31A,31B* and 32A)||Rs. 5,000/- per work|
|2.||For a license to communicate an any work to the public by Broadcast (Section 31(1)(b))||Rs. 40,000/- per applicant/ per station|
|3.||For license to republish a Cinematograph Film (Section 31)||Rs. 15,000/- per work|
|4.||For a license to republish a sound recording (Section 31)||Rs. 10,000/- per work|
|5.||For a license to perform any work in public (Section 31)||Rs. 5,000/- per work|
|6.||For a license to publish or communicate to the public the work or translation (Section 31A)||Rs. 5,000/- per work|
|7.||For a license to publish any work in any format useful for person with disability (Section 31 B)||Rs. 2,000/- per work|
|8.||For an application for a license to produce and publish a translation of a Literary or Dramatic work in any Language (Section 32 & 32-A)||Rs. 5,000/- per work|
|9.||For an application for registration or copyright in a:|
|(a)Literary, Dramatic, Musical or Artistic work||Rs. 500/- per work|
|(b)Provided that in respect of a Literary or Artistic work which is used or is capable of being used in relation to any goods or services (Section 45)||Rs. 2,000/- per work|
|10.||For an application for change in particulars of copyright entered in the Register of Copyrights in respect of a:|
|(a) Literary, Dramatic, Musical or Artistic work||Rs. 200/- per work|
|(b) Provided that in respect of a literary or Artistic work which is used or is capable of being used in relation to any goods or services (Section 45)||Rs. 1,000/- per work|
|11.||For an application for registration of Copyright in a Cinematograph Film (Section 45)||Rs. 5,000/- per work|
|12.||For an application for registration of change in particulars of copyright entered in the Register of Copyrights in respect of Cinematograph film (Section 45)||Rs. 2,000/- per work|
|13.||For an application for registration of copyright in a Sound Recording (Section 45)||Rs. 2,000/- per work|
|14.||For an application for registration of changes in particulars of copyright entered in the Register of Copyrights in respect of Sound Recording (Section 45)||Rs. 1,000/- per work|
|15.||For taking extracts from the indexes (Section 47)||Rs. 500/- per work|
|16.||For taking extracts from the Register of Copyrights (Section 47).||Rs. 500/- per work|
|17.||For a certified copy of an extract from the Register of Copyrights of the indexes (Section 47)||Rs. 500/- per copy|
|18.||For a certified copy of any other public document in the custody of the Register of Copyright or Secretary of the Copyright Board||Rs. 500/- per Copy|
|19.||For an application for prevention of importation of infringing copies (Section 53) per place of entry||Rs. 1,200/- per work|
Parag Kamani is a media and entertainment lawyer with over 30 years of experience in the Indian music industry. He also contributes to the #SAundCheck blog regularly, and offers consultation services too in the field of copyright, trademark and more.