A copyright is literally the right to copy a work. With copyright, a work can only be copied if the owner gives permission, giving owners of a body of work the ability to decide how and when others may use it. Copyright law makes it easier for authors to make money selling their books, by preventing bookstores from buying one copy of a book, making copies of the book, and then selling the copies to their customers. However, copyright only prevents others from copying your work. Unless you can prove that someone read your book, it’s hard to prove infringement.
Copyright protects the rights of authors, i.e., creators of intellectual property in the form of literary works. All the rights of the original work apply to a translation also because any person cannot translate a work enjoying copyright without the permission of the copyright owner. Copyright protection enables the owner of the copyright to take legal action against infringers in a court.
Copyright also enables moral rights to be identified as the creator or the author of definite kinds of material (known as the paternity right), and raise an objection to the distortion and mutilation of the right. An author’s right to object to the adaptation or derogatory action in relation to his or her work is referred to as an integrity right.
Copyright Owner Rights
Copyright means exclusive right. The copyright owner has the following exclusive rights to his work, which are as follows-
- To reproduce the work
- To issue copies of the work to the public
- To perform the work in public
- To communicate the work to the public.
- To make cinematograph film or sound recording in respect of the work
- To make any translation of the work
- To make any adaptation of the work.
If anyone violates those exclusive rights, you have a claim of infringement against the wrongdoer. Of course, there are exceptions. There are always exceptions, and exceptions to the exceptions. The most common is Fair Use, which I will describe in a later post.
The general rule is that copyright lasts for 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.
This is the biggest and most significant benefit of getting a copyright registration done. With a copyright in place, your work is legally denoted to be yours. This keeps it safe. And if anyone infringes or tries to replicate your work or content, you can cite the registered copyright in a legal argument. This will automatically and swiftly tip the scales in your favour. Without a copyright, you may find it difficult to contest such an issue. However, with a copyright registered beforehand, such issues can be sorted easily.
The owner can transfer the copyright
If the copyright in a work has been registered with the Copyright Office and its particulars have been recorded in the Register of Copyrights, then transfer of ownership may be recorded in the Register pursuant to an application to the Registrar of Copyrights in a prescribed form, along with a prescribed fee.
How to Register for Copyright
Throughout the writing process, you are in control of every word and punctuation mark on each page. Once your book is published, it’s important that you remain in control of your work. Intellectual property laws make the foundation of copyrighting a book easy, but you can still take it a step further to make certain that you remain in control, by registering it with the Copyright Office of India. Officially copyrighting a book with the Copyright Office of India ensures that you are the legal owner of the work you’ve created, in case there is ever a need to litigate in the future. Your book and all its characters, settings and stories will belong to you, and if anyone infringes on any part of it, you can assert your rights.
The author of the work, copyright claimant, owner of an exclusive right for the work or an authorized agent file an application either physically in the copyrights office or through speed/registered post or through e-filing facility available on the official website (copyright.gov.in)