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Copyright Website in India

At present, a lot of budding entrepreneurs or professional bloggers and start-ups run their website and applications or blogs but are not aware of the fact that they can copyright website. Getting a website copyright in India is not at all a tedious task as it involves a straightforward and easy process. Hence, in today’s learning blog, we will be guiding you about the process and the steps involved in obtaining a copyright website.

What is the meaning of the term Copyright?

The term copyright means a right that is granted to the creator of an original dramatic, artistic literary, or musical work. This right is bestowed upon the concerned creator as soon as the work has been created. Further, a registered copyright will assist the owner in claiming relief in the case of any copyright infringement.

This means the creator or the concerned author could easily claim a copyright over that item. Moreover, the items on which one can claim copyright include software programs, movies, poems, cartoons, and in some cases, even the performances can also be copyrighted.

Is there a need to obtain a Website Copyright?

Violation of Copyright is always illegal, but it can be difficult to take action against offenders without registration of copyright. Registration of Copyright can be a public record of ownership. But according to the Copyright Act, all works which are original and published first are inherently copyrighted. In addition, owners of registered works may be eligible for statutory damages and attorney's fees in successful litigation against infringers.

Each website with all the contents are inherently copyrighted, if it's their original works. Copyright registration for website is totally an individual choice. If somebody thinks that the content of the website is very valuable, financially or otherwise, or if someone feels the need to protect their website and its contents for legal reasons, then one should proceed for website copyright.

A website doesn’t only contains contents, but it also includes design, logo, graphic art, programs, web pages, etc.

For example, whatever content is written on the website, and if it's original, then it can be copyrighted as literary works. All photographs which have been posted on the website will be considered as artistic works. Videos and Sound clips are also copyrightable as well.

In India, the Copyright Office does not offer any comprehensive website registration service. Every work on the website shall be required to be registered separately, and therefore it will require separate applications for each work.

It means that one cannot possess a blanket copyright over the entire website. Instead, owners own a copyright only over the individual components of the website.

It is not necessary to copyright website. One has all the rights over the website, regardless of any certificate.

If in case a website is involved in the publishing of creative work such as photographs, poems, novels, drawings, digital art, and sketches, etc., then it is always advisable to apply for the website copyright to protect the intellectual property which would not have been existed without required skills. Hence, one can obtain copyright registration for every piece of unique work produced by him.

What are the Documents required for obtaining Website Copyright Registration in India?

The following listed are the documents required for obtaining copyright registration in India –

  • Name, address and the nationality of the concerned applicant
  • Name, address and the nationality of the concerned author of the work
  • Nature of the applicant’s interest in the said copyright, i.e., either owner or licensee, etc
  • Logo, design, contents, programs, etc….
  • Title of the work
  • A duly signed declaration by the said author (if in case he or she is different from the applicant)
  • Language of the work
  • Whether the said work is published or unpublished
  • If in case the said work is published, then the year and country of his first publication along with the name, nationality and address of the publisher
  • Lastly, the year and name of the countries of subsequent publications, if in case any
  • Name, address and the nationality of any other person who is authorized to either assign or license the rights available in the copyright
  • Power of attorney for the said firm
  • Six hard copies of the concerned work along with three soft copies

Elements of the Website that can be Protected?

Not all the elements of a website fall under the ambit of the copyright law. The following listed are the elements that are eligible to get copyright website -

  • Textual and Visual Content - The moment the one has created and uploaded an original content on his or her website, it receives a copyright protection. Further, this includes the originally written materials of the website. The term originally written material includes blogs and product description pages. Furthermore, it is significant to note that the factual information such as the legal disclaimers are not protected under the umbrella of copyright. Lastly, the original images, drawings, videos, and graphical elements also get protection.
  • Website Design - Web page layouts and designs are created using the computer-readable language or coding, and is protected and safeguarded by the copyright the minute it is created. So, the same is also eligible to get registered and protected. Further, it is significant to note that in the case of purchasing a website design layout, one has the carefully read the terms and conditions of the said purchase agreement. Careful reading is significant in order to understand what and which rights are vested to the concerned person by way of the purchase.
  • Brand Name and LogosAs we know that all the original works that fall under the ambit of literary and artistic work sare eligible to get protected by the copyright. However, the brand elements like the Brand name, slogans and logo cannot be protected by way of a copyright registration. So, in case one has an unregistered brand element on the website, then, in that case, he or she must go only for a trademark registration.

When should one consider to get his Copyright website?

The following are the reasons as to why one should obtain copyright website –

  • If the concerned website contains original ideas or concepts and the valuable information that generates revenue.
  • Whenever some third-party sites are replicating the content available on the owner's site and have started viewing and sounding like his or her website.
  • If one has started losing sales and revenue because of the duplication of content

What is the Procedure for Copyright Website in India?

The following are the steps involved in the process of copyright website in India –

  • Apply for Copyright Registration - One can apply for the website copyright either by the way offline mode or online mode. In the case of offline mode, firstly, the applicant is required to fill an application and then have to submit this application to the copyright department together with the fee of copyright.
  • Generation of Diary Number - Once the applicant has filed the application for the copyright website , he or she will be provided with a diary number for future reference. The said diary number will be generated after filing the concerned application.
  • Examination of the Copyright Application - After the filing of the application, the concerned application will go further to the examination department. If in case the examination department finds an error in the submitted application, then they will inform the applicant about the error raised. Further, the applicant is required to remove the defects or the errors raised, and if in case anyone objects either the copyright or the work for copyright is already copyrighted, then in that case applicant’s application for copyright may get rejected.
  • Copyright Registration – once discrepancies will be removed, the copyright department will take around 30 days’ time for issuing the certificate of copyright registration.

Add a Fair Warning

In order to make sure that people are cognizant that the website of the concerned individual is copyright protected, he or she can include a footnote at the bottom of the website stating - © Your Name 2020. Further, if in case the concerned person has registered his or her copyright, then the footnote at the bottom can also include the added layer of protection, i.e., - © Your Name 2020. All Rights Reserved.

Further, it is noteworthy to note that the original content of the website is protected and secured even without a copyright registration. As, even without a registration, the owner can contact the infringers and stake his or her rights over them.

Hence, copyright protection acts as an important and significant intellectual property asset for the commercial business websites as it also permits the owner to sue the infringers for damages.

Lastly, if in case anyone is unsure whether his or her website content needs protection or not, then, in that case, one can always seek a professional or expert opinion to get doubly sure.

Conclusion

If in case one wants to obtain copyright website, then he is required to file an online form on the official website of copyright . Further, he or she will get the copyright issued on his or her work after a period of 30 days of filing of application. So, it is crystal clear that obtaining a copyright registration for a work done plays a significant role in its protection.

Frequently Asked Questions

  • 1. Can a Website as a whole obtain Copyright Protection?

    No, the Website as a whole is not eligible for Copyright Protection.

  • 2. What is the Non-Copyrightable Part in a Website?

    Usually, the non-copyrightable part in a website comprises of the following listed –
    a) Functional Plans of the Website,
    b) Ideas or Future Plans of the Website,
    c) Layout and Format
    d) Unclaimable Material
    e) Look or Feel of a Website or its Webpage
    f) Unoriginal Material such as the icons, names, or familiar symbols

    Unoriginal Material such as the icons, names, or familiar symbols

  • 3. What is all considered to be copyrightable on a Website under the Copyright Act, 1957?

    The Website generally consists of different parts that are eligible to be copyrightable, provided that falls within either of the categories of works prescribed under Section 13 of the Copyright Act, 1957. The following listed are the components that are eligible to copyrighted are –
    a) Texts
    b) Computer programs
    c) Tables
    d) Compilations including Computer Databases
    e) Photographs
    f) Paintings
    g) Diagram
    h) Map
    i) Chart or Plan
    j) Sound Recordings
    k) Video Clips

  • 4. How much will be the Fee charged for obtaining a Website Copyright?

    In the case of obtaining the copyright over a website, an applicant would require to file multiple applications along with multiple fees. Hence, the fees charged for Website Copyright will be the accumulation of the fees charged for different applications.

  • 5. Is there any specific procedure prescribed for obtaining Website Copyright?

    No, there is no such specific procedure prescribed for obtaining Website Copyright.

  • 6. What is a Copyright Diary Number?

    The Copyright Diary Number is a unique application number that is generated at the time of submitting an online Copyright Application. One can track down the status of his or her copyright application from this number.

  • 7. Is a video clip, which is used on a website eligible to get copyright protection?

    Yes, a Video Clip used on a Website is eligible to obtain copyright protection, provided it is an original work.

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