| 24 Feb 2024
Indian Music Industry calls for Metaverse Accountability in Intellectual Property Rights

MUMBAI: The Indian Music Industry (IMI), represented by members like T-Series (Super Cassettes) and Sony Music, advocates for metaverse accountability concerning intellectual property rights (IPR).

Responding to the Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI)’s consultation on Digital Transformation through 5G Ecosystem, which closed on January 22, the IMI emphasizes the need for metaverse operators and users to share responsibility for IP infringement cases. Blaise Fernandes, IMI's CEO and president, highlights the challenge of enforcing copyrights, especially in the music industry, due to user-generated content platforms' safe harbor protection.

Extending this protection to the metaverse, Fernandes argues, would cause significant harm to creators, artists, and rightsholders while hindering the growth of India's recorded music industry. While some stakeholders, including Meta, Jio, VI, BSNL, Nasscom, Tata Communications, and Nokia, believe that existing IPR regulations are adequate for regulating the metaverse, others suggest that challenges may arise, particularly concerning generative AI and data privacy.

Suggestions include leveraging blockchain with NFTs for IPR enforcement and addressing metaverse regulation within the upcoming Digital India Act. Meta, a leading proponent of the metaverse, acknowledges the need for ongoing dialogue and collaboration to address emerging issues and identify regulatory gaps. It calls for the development of common technical standards and protocols to ensure interoperability and prevent fragmentation of the metaverse.

Discussion around behavioral norms in the metaverse, data privacy concerns, and the role of existing regulations such as the Digital Personal Data Protection (DPDP) Act and Consumer Protection Act is also highlighted.

Additionally, the consultation paper addresses the role of 5G in enabling applications like IoT, M2M communication, and the metaverse, seeking input on how to promote adoption while ensuring user privacy and data security.