Underlying Works in Sound Recordings: The Underlying Complexities

  • Harshit Bhoi
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  • Harshit Bhoi

    Student at National Law University Odisha, Cuttack, India

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The moment a sound recording is heard, it becomes evident that there exist not one but many elements involved in the making of such a recording. The lyricist, the composer, and the producer of the sound recording, all are entitled to copyright protection in their respective works. However, the question that has often knocked the doors of the judiciary is that whether the exploitation of the sound recordings incorporating certain musical or literary works disharmonizes with the copyright protection granted to such underlying works. Recently, contrary interpretations in this regard by the IPAB and the honourable Delhi High Court have further fueled the discourse on this issue. The author through this paper has tried to condense the various complexities in this regard. In doing so, the statutory protection granted to the aforesaid works have been analyzed independent of the 2012 Amendment. Further, the author has delved into the issue of accrual of royalty by the underlying works when the sound recording incorporating them is exploited. In the course of dissecting this issue, judicial precedents both prior and post the 2012 Amendment have been discussed. Finally, the eventual effect of the amendments on this issue has been examined. Consequently, it has been concluded that on a reasonable interpretation of the said amendments, it becomes clear that the underlying works indeed incur royalty when any sound recording incorporating such works and not forming part of any cinematographic film is exploited. This, the author has inferred to be the intention of the legislature in this regard while passing the Copyright (Amendment) Act of 2012.


Research Paper


International Journal of Legal Science and Innovation, Volume 3, Issue 3, Page 132 - 145

DOI: https://doij.org/10.10000/IJLSI.11692

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This is an Open Access article, distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution -NonCommercial 4.0 International (CC BY-NC 4.0) (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc/4.0/), which permits remixing, adapting, and building upon the work for non-commercial use, provided the original work is properly cited.


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