1. India accedes to WIPO Copyright Treaty, 1996 (WCT) and WIPO Performance and Phonograms Treaty, 1996 (WPPT)
The Union Cabinet on July 04, 2018 approved the proposal submitted by DIPP, Ministry of Commerce and Industry, Government of India for accession to WCT and WPPT. The press release may be viewed here.
What does it mean for India? – International protection to domestic creative-right holders; Enabling creative-right holders to secure return on investment through the international copyright system.
What does it mean for you? – If you are a sound artist (referred to as ‘producers of phonograms’ in the WPPT) who uploads music on any online platform, or if you are a stand-up comedian (referred to as ‘performers’ in WPPT) who uploads his videos on any online platform, or if you are a writer/blogger who published literary works over digital platforms, then you now have a better chance to protect your work online and safeguard its use.
See here for a summary of WCT.
See here for a summary of WPPT.
The rights under these treaties will only be available to right holders after the Copyright Act, 1957 is amended.
2. India’s first post-trial SEP judgment
Koninklijke Philips Electronics N.V. vs. Rajesh Bansal And Ors. [CS(Comm.) 24 of 2016]
View the judgment here.
3. WTO Ruling on the packaging of Tobacco products
In 2011, Australia implemented a measure which required all tobacco companies to market their products in drab, brown cardboard packages with standardized fonts. Pursuant to this, several countries(Cuba, Indonesia, Honduras and the Dominican Republic) together initiated a complaint at the WTO alleging that the Australian plain packaging measures violate WTO Intellectual Property Rules and sets illegal barriers to trade.
Reuters reported, “The WTO panel said Australia’s law improved public health by reducing the use of tobacco products, rebuffing claims that alternative measures would be equally effective. It also rejected the argument that Australia had unjustifiably infringed tobacco trademarks and violated intellectual property rights.”