Newslaundry accused of “uploading and infringing copyrighted material on their website”

The accusations have been made by India Today Group, which has sought Rs 2 crore in damages

e4m by exchange4media Staff
Updated: Oct 27, 2021 6:39 PM

India Today Group, which owns major news channels Aaj Tak and India Today, has accused Newslaundry of “uploading infringing, violating copyrights, and exploiting commercially disparaging material on their own website” and also sought Rs 2 crore in damages.

The copyright suit comes nearly a month after Newslaundry claimed that YouTube froze its channel after the India Today Group had reported  multiple copyright violations.

The suit filed in the Delhi High Court (which e4m has a copy of) also seeks an order to have 34 articles published on the Newslaundry website and 65 videos on the portal’s YouTube channel removed.

The suit seeks similar action against social media content related to these articles and videos posted on Newslaundry’s Facebook and Twitter accounts.

The TV Today Group has also asked the Delhi High Court to restrain Newslaundry and its journalists from stealing India Today Group content for its own purposes l.

Besides Newslaundry Media Private Limited, its co-founder Abhinandan Sekhri, Director Prashant Sareen, Director Roopak Kappor, Executive Editor Manisha Pande, Correspondent Ayush Tiwari, Columnist Hridayesh Joshi and Executive Editors Atul Chaurasia and Raman Kirpal have been made as defendants in the case

“The Defendant  has reproduced/published various portions of original works and telecasts from the Plaintiff's News Channels [i.e. India Today, Aaj Tak and Good News Today] in the videos published by the Defendant  on its website and social media platforms. The Plaintiff's work used by the Defendants is the commercial product comprising of original cinematograph films and sound recordings and the Plaintiff owns a copyright in such commercial products. The Defendant have neither approached the Plaintiff seeking their consent to use such copyrighted material nor has any license been granted by the Plaintiff to the Defendant for the same. The use of such material by the Defendants is therefore an infringement of the copyright of the Plaintiff in its news broadcasts by the Defendant Nos. 1 to 9 under the Copyright Act, 1957. The Plaintiff being the owner of the copyrights in the broadcasts has the exclusive right to publish/broadcasts the said original cinematograph films and sound recordings.”

“Further, the Defendants are piggy-backing on the work of the Plaintiff. The facts and circumstances of the present case would show that the focus of the viewer/listener in the videos impugned before this Hon’ble Court is always on the parts of the original cinematograph films and sound recordings of the Plaintiff used by the Defendant Nos. 1 to 9 in their videos and not on any work allegedly created by the said Defendants. The Defendants are using the original cinematograph films and sound recordings of the Plaintiff for the sole purpose of making their own programme more interesting, attractive or enjoyable and are therefore deriving  benefit from using the said works at the cost of the Plaintiff’s exclusive rights in the same and are therefore infringing upon the copyright of the Plaintiff in the said original cinematograph films and sound recordings,” the lawsuit stated.

Newslaundry has been sued by Sakal and Times Now earlier for defamation.

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