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Indian Copyright Bill Declares Private, Personal Copying "Fair Dealing" 192

asp7yxia writes "India's new copyright bill sounds like a pretty good piece of work: it declares private, personal copying to be 'fair dealing' (like US fair use) and limits the prohibition on breaking DRM so that it's only illegal to do so if you're also violating copyright."
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Indian Copyright Bill Declares Private, Personal Copying "Fair Dealing"

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  • by Anonymous Coward on Saturday April 24, 2010 @01:36AM (#31964914)

    A link to boingboing that links to a blog that links to the WSJ blog post [] that actually talks about the topic. Way to go.

  • by koona ( 920057 ) <`dcsherriff' `at' `'> on Saturday April 24, 2010 @01:39AM (#31964934) Journal
    Am I the only one out here that has noticed that where people really have to work hard, they don't put up with much bullshit? Any indian will tell you that america is a fools paradise, and we put up with so much malarky it's sickening.
    • by BJ_Covert_Action ( 1499847 ) on Saturday April 24, 2010 @04:11AM (#31965514) Homepage Journal
      Why do you think we yanks rose to world power status so quickly, relatively speaking? From the Revolutionary War all the way up through WWII we still had to work hard, and we didn't put up with much bullshit. =P

      However, as a society grows and prospers, it becomes easier to survive by doing less. Nowhere else in the world, right now, can someone have so much comfort for so little an effort as in the USA. Thus, more folk are raised with less work ethic. More folk migrate to the prosperous society where they don't have to work hard. The ratio of folk that work hard and contribute to the growth of society vs. those who don't, decreases overall, and great nations crumble. This has happened hundreds of times in history before. One day, maybe, we'll learn how to outgrow such a lame habit.
      • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

        by brunes69 ( 86786 )

        I take it you have never lived in Western Europe... where it is standard to have university payed for, 6-8 weeks mandatory vacation, national strong unions, free health care, and a social safety net large enough to hold a blue wale if you do in fact get fired.

      • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

        by Dr_Barnowl ( 709838 )

        Why do you think we yanks rose to world power status so quickly, relatively speaking?

        A clean-slate advantage, vast tracts of relatively unpopulated land and natural resources, coupled with a rapidly advancing technology base?

        • A clean-slate advantage,

          ...which they had to fight and work hard for. Otherwise they would have just been Brits a long way from home.

          vast tracts of relatively unpopulated land and natural resources

          ...which they had to explore, settle, cultivate, and discover. All of this took hard work, a pioneering spirit, and a tenacity reminiscent of legends.

          coupled with a rapidly advancing technology base?

          ...which advanced rapidly due to the hard work, sharp cunning, long hours, and high levels of gumption that the Americans poured into it. Technology only begets more technology if people are willing to work hard on existing systems.

          I am not disagr

      • by Kjella ( 173770 )

        Just working hard in itself means very little, I'm sure the Soviet plan economists managed to get people to work but when you take away everything else it doesn't really matter. It's not that I work 40 hours a week (including lunch break) and have 5 weeks vacation that will be our downfall as long as we work smarter and leverage technology. Besides, with enough wealth I think all people will want to do more with life as per Maslow's pyramid.

        What creates the huge waves of rising and falling nations is that t

    • we put up with so much malarky it's sickening.

      Legal Malarkey(c) is great business if your neighbors are Americans, have money and follow the Law(c), but not if they are poor and don't know or have much laws. Then it's better to teach them programming and export electrons to people with Money, and Legal Malarkey(c). Legal Malakey(c) is a products registered of exclusive rights. Copyright by US Global Marines Peace Media Theater Services Corporation. Legal Malarkey is licensed for production and sales for export by Walt McDonald, Mac Disney, Coca Elect

  • by Fallen Kell ( 165468 ) on Saturday April 24, 2010 @01:40AM (#31964946)
    Seriously, if the description given here is what it truly does, then this seems like a good law. Now if only the USA government would pass something like this which would put some balance back into copyright. The breaking of DRM only being illegal when you break copyright, and with it legal to make personal copies, it means people are free to break the DRM of things they bought, like making a backup copy of a movie, or ripping a movie for use on a HTPC without the need of the DVD in the HTPC (or blu-ray, or itunes songs, etc., etc.). Because all you are doing is using the item that you purchased for yourself, and you are free to use it in any way that you want, not simply the way that the copyright owner thinks you should be able to use it.
    • by fm6 ( 162816 ) on Saturday April 24, 2010 @03:11AM (#31965284) Homepage Journal

      Not surprising if you realize that third-world countries are badly hurt by IP hoarding. It means they have to pay too much for books, technology, drugs, etc., unless they choose to pirate — which, of course, they often do.

      I'm particularly grateful to India for their knockoff drugs. I don't understand all the legalities, but because of the difference in the way patents work in India, it's perfectly legal to reverse-engineer a patented drug and invent your own process for making it. In 2005, they changed the law so that patent holders can force makers of such unauthorized generics to pay royalties, but they still can't stop them altogether, the way they can in the U.S. As a result, unauthorized Indian generics are available for many drugs still under patent, at extremely low prices.

      This affected me personally a few years back when I was unemployed, close to broke, and needed to be using a fairly expensive drug on a daily basis. It was particularly galling that the original patent on the drug had expired, but the company had managed to create new patents on the manufacturing process that still gave them exclusive rights. Fortunately, the same drug was available from India for a fraction of the cost. The downside was that my phone was obtained by various mercenary Indian call centers, possibly including the one you saw in Slumdog Millionair.

    • It almost seems too simple, like any moment now we're going to find out about the secret clause authorizing the use of deadly force. []

      It's almost like common sense! When you purchase a product, you own it and can use it how you wish, with the only restriction being that you can't duplicate it and sell it to someone else. So if I purchase a DVD, I'm free to put that DVD on my laptop if I want to watch the film on a long flight without being considered a criminal. It's so simple and obvious, you have to wonde
  • SuddenOutbreakOf... (Score:5, Interesting)

    by heretic108 ( 454817 ) on Saturday April 24, 2010 @01:44AM (#31964962)

    Hmm, lemme see... wise and profound old culture, who invented our modern numbering system over 2000 years ago, writes a copyright law in the 21st century addressing contemporary technology issues, and gets it substantially right.

    Why am I not surprised?

    • wise and profound old culture

      Not too sure about the rest, but it certainly qualifies as old. Indian culture has no lessons to teach us that we haven't already learned, to be honest. Lets get that indoor plumbing thing sorted before we move on to cultural superiority hey?

    • I love the way that we have now become so accustomed to bad copyright law that when one is written that is only a little bit absurdly unfair we heap praise on those authoring it. Copyright in India is still 60 years! And no work released with DRM on it should have copyright protection in the first place. The DRM violates the spirit of the social contract! It's the equivalent of publishing a patent written using whatever cypher was used to encode the Voynich manuscript.
      This law is not good, it's just not as

  • by The New Black ( 1795910 ) on Saturday April 24, 2010 @01:49AM (#31964990)
    maybe the US should outsource law-making for a day.
    • maybe the US should outsource law-making for a day.

      I wonder why this is modded Funny, it strikes me as quite Insightful. One of the great tragedies of today is the global reach of the American Empire matched with its lack of introspection. However, if you look at previous empires, you wouldn't be surprised.

  • What about ACTA ? (Score:2, Interesting)

    by ProdigyPuNk ( 614140 )
    How will this effect future relations with ACTA countries ? Depending on the wording of ACTA, this could end up having a rather large effect since ACTA does not take the same stance as far as this goes...
    • Re:What about ACTA ? (Score:5, Informative)

      by bbqsrc ( 1441981 ) on Saturday April 24, 2010 @02:06AM (#31965062) Homepage
      India is not involved with ACTA. Most of Asia is not involved with ACTA. ACTA will only affect the consumer as far as I can see, and it sucks.
      • Re:What about ACTA ? (Score:4, Interesting)

        by Luckyo ( 1726890 ) on Saturday April 24, 2010 @02:16AM (#31965106)

        Also, India isn't even involved in WIPO, ACTA's predecessor. This hasn't stopped RIAA and co from claiming that it infringes WIPO and shoving it on all kinds of black lists for that reason.
        ACTA is mostly about western countries. Most of the developing countries are still coming to terms with WIPO, if they signed it.

        • Also, India isn't even involved in WIPO, ACTA's predecessor.

          WIPO isn't ACTA's predecessor. Look at the names - one is an "Organization", the other is an "Act".
          Second, India is a signatory to the treaties that are precursors to ACTA, notably the Berne and Paris Convention Treaties, as well as the Patent Cooperation Treaty.

      • India is not involved with ACTA. Most of Asia is not involved with ACTA. ACTA will only affect the consumer as far as I can see, and it sucks.

        What sucks about ACTA? Assuming that you're a US citizen, there will be no substantive changes to US law as a result of implementing ACTA. Every provision in it already exists in current copyright and trademark law. Now, if you're in a country with weak IP laws, like Brazil or Mexico, it has some major changes, but not here.

      • The US is planning to force other countries to accept ACTA as part of future trade deals, this will impact many Asian countries.

  • Wonder why ... (Score:4, Interesting)

    by CalcuttaWala ( 765227 ) on Saturday April 24, 2010 @02:13AM (#31965086) Homepage
    this is not such a big deal here in India ! strange that i had to hear it in ./ and not in the national press
    • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

      by AHuxley ( 892839 )
      India has nothing to lose internally at this point.
      Think back to pharma in India.
      India needed cheap, quality drugs without the R and D backend to treat its population.
      India did not have an export market for its own R and D, just the tech to produce very cheap drugs.
      So India pumped out drugs for its needs and noted other countries wanted them too.
      Suddenly what was an internal medical matter was a profit making dream.
      With profit came R and D and finally India had its own big pharma.
      Then came the fun pa
  • But... (Score:5, Interesting)

    by laughingcoyote ( 762272 ) <barghesthowl@e x c> on Saturday April 24, 2010 @02:30AM (#31965160) Journal

    There's always something, and this bill's got quite a "something" in it. This is India's very own version of our Mickey Mouse Copyright Perpetuation Act (ostensibly having something to do with Sonny Bono, but we all know who it really was for...), and extends a fixed 60-year term to life plus 60 (see sidebar here [].

    Why in the world would we want to see copyrights get longer, anywhere? They obviously already provide an incentive at current levels. Even ten years should be an adequate incentive for 99.9% of cases, and you never want to write law based on the edge cases. With digital distribution speeding up how quickly a work can have its initial distribution, copyright terms should be shrinking, not growing.

    • by Trogre ( 513942 )


    • by dodobh ( 65811 )

      Copyright is currently life + 52 years for literary works in India. The change is only for photography, and will probably be applied to everything with no exceptions.

    • and you never want to write law based on the edge cases.

      I think you have that backwards - politicians salivate at the idea of writing laws based on the edge cases - PATRIOT Act, Megan's Law, Amber Alerts (and all the international derivates), drinking age of 21, drug possession "with intent to distribute" for drug quantities equivalent to that of a six-pack of beer - the list of these sorts of cockamamie laws that are aimed at exceptionally rare edge cases just goes on and on.

    • Why in the world would we want to see copyrights get longer, anywhere?

      We don't. The problem is, we aren't very relevant to the making of this legislation.

  • This is such a great, simple resolution. The current copyright greed is out of control, based on a 'because we can' model. I was very inspired by [] . Changes in this stuff is essential for progress of global culture. Go India. PDF is here [] for those who want to look further.
  • I think it needs the "suddenoutbreak" tag.

    I wonder if India is one of the countries in the ACTA thingie....

    and what the NewYorkCountryLawyer has to say about it.

    • Except this was part of an expansion of power and coverage of copyright, it only looks benevolent from a western point of view.

    • by Fishbulb ( 32296 )
      I tried with "suddenoutbreakofganesh" but apparently it wasn't popular... :)
  • Making DRM breaking illegal only if you're breaking copyright is like making it illegal to use a gun if you're committing murder with it. The offense here is breaking copyright, which is already illegal, breaking DRM is just the means to the end.

  • Practically Speaking, I would like to see the implications of this change of law in society. With respective of creative arts, many are not aware of what is legal and what is illegal. Seriously.
    Many think, pirated DVDs are of poor quality and if you get high quality pirated DVDsit is worth their money to buy it. Legalese does not come into picture at all.

    Majority of Indian's being aware of copyright laws one of one of best things to happen to country.

    This change is definitely a fine piece of work.

  • Could someone please point out where in the original document any of this is substantiated? I've gotten used to fact checking Doctorow and Geist. (It's shocking how often they misrepresent the actual facts.) Geist links to two articles: one is a non-searchable pdf with a lot of amendments (it's difficult to decipher without the original document to see what it's amending), and the second document is a news article from "livemint". The livemint article says the copyright amendment gives more rights to cr
  • What difference does it make if they say you can break DRM in your own home for private use if the tools necessary to do so are still illegal to possess, sell, offer as a service, or otherwise traffic in?

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