Broadcasters object to changes in Copyright Bill

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(31 August 2011 11:10 am)

NEW DELHI: Television broadcasters have objected to some of the changes in the Copyright (Amendment) Bill 2010 as it has excluded them from the ambit of the statutory licensing provisions.

Broadcasters fear this could lead to legal fights between them and the music content owners. Under the statutory licensing norms, music companies would have had to give them content without any discrimination; the royalties would have been decided by the Copyright Board.

The Bill has been placed in the Rajya Sabha for discussion, after getting the Cabinet nod.

The News Broadcasters Association (NBA) has noted 'with regret and apprehension' the changes introduced by the Human Resource Development Ministry in the Copyright (Amendment) Bill 2010.

The NBA said by the change, the provision of statutory licensing has been sought to be restricted only to "radio" and not to other broadcasting media like television.

In a press note, the NBA said this will benefit only vested business interests and act to the serious detriment of the fast growing broadcasting industry.

"These changes are also an attempt by the Ministry to overreach the Parliamentary Standing Committee, which had implicitly accepted the earlier dispensation," the NBA said in a statement.

The NBA expressed the hope that the Ministry would restore the earlier provision covering all broadcasting media.
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