National Intellectual Property Organization
World IP Day 2015



 
Copyright And Neighbouring Rights

Copyright is a legal protection extended to the owner of the rights in an original work of creation. Copyright protects expressions and not the ideas. There is no copyright in an idea. Copyright comprises two main sets of rights: The economic rights and moral rights. Economic rights include the right of reproduction, broadcasting, public performance, adaptation, translation, public relation, public display, distribution and so on. Moral rights include the author’s right to object to any distortion, mutilation or other modification of his work that might be prejudicial to his honor and reputation.

Copyright subsists in the following classes of works:

Original literary, dramatic, musical and artistic works

Cinematograph films

Sound recordings

The original creators of works protected by copyright, as also their legal heirs have certain basic rights. They hold the exclusive right to use or authorize others for use of the copyrighted material. The creator of the right can prohibit or authorize:

Reproduction in various forms such as printed publication or sound recording

Public performance as in a play or musical work

Recordings in a disc or cassette

Broadcasting by radio, cable or satellite

Translation into other languages

Adaptation, such as novel into screenplay


Subject to certain conditions, a fair deal for research, study, criticism, review and news reporting, as well as use of works in library and schools and in the legislatures, is permitted without specific permission of the copyright owners. In order to protect the interests of users, some exemptions have been prescribed in respect of specific uses of works enjoying copyright. E.g.

For the purpose of research or private study

For criticism or review

For reporting current events

In connection with judicial proceeding

Performance by an amateur club or society if the performance is given to a non-paying audience

The making of sound recordings of literary, dramatic or musical works under certain conditions.


The period of Copyright protection in India is 60 years. In the case of original literary, dramatic, musical and artistic works the 60-year period is counted from the year following the death of the author. In the case of cinematograph films, sound recordings, photographs, posthumous publications, anonymous and pseudonymous publications, works of government and works of international organizations, the 60-year period is counted from the date of publication.

Neighboring rights include rights of performing artists in their performances, rights of producers of phonograms in their phonograms and the rights of broadcasting organizations in their radio and TV programs
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By Elizabeth March, WIPO Magazine Editorial Team** Source: WIPO Magazine Issue No. 6/2008 dated June 2008
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