| 20 Jul 2024
Madras High Court upholds the new copyright act establishing synchronization rights for music owners; courtesy Sony Music

MUMBAI: Madras High Court has passed a landmark and far-reaching order where approvals from music rights owners are mandatory before marrying (synchronization) songs with visuals. The music could be existing songs, versions or underlying works. TV Broadcasters, Advertisers, Film producers and the Internet companies who use existing music will now need to seek prior permission from copyright owners before communicating to the public including broadcasters.

This decision will help the music industry as authors, composers and labels shall be entitled to claim payment for any such usage. The judgment was passed after global music giant Sony Music challenged a leading Chennai based television network - Raj TV, who was found using a number of songs without prior approvals. The Honorable Justice M.M. Sundresh passed a permanent injunction restraining the channel from using Sony Music copyrighted work with immediate effect.

This important order validates the rights that have been given to Creators and Owners and will go a long way to ensure a fair economic balance between the creative community and the larger broadcast and internet organisations.