Website blocking – An Answer to Copyright infringement?

Several jurisdictions have permitted the blocking of websites propagating child pornography, online gambling, terrorism. Is blocking of websites the appropriate measure to curb copyright infringement? UTV Software Communications Ltd and Ors. v. 1337 X.TO and Ors. is a judgment of the Hon’ble Delhi High Court delivered on April 10, 2019 that deals with this issue among others. These were eight suits seeking permanent injunction in order to restrain the defendants from communicating to the public the cinematograph works of the plaintiff without authorization. Justice Manmohan in this landmark judgment granted the injunction for blocking the websites of the defendants that provide access to infringing/pirated content. It was also directed that the mirror/alphanumeric websites that provide new means of gaining access to the same infringing content be impleaded under Order I, Rule 10 of the CPC. Further, the Joint Registrar was directed to issue directions to disable access to these hydra headed websites on being satisfied that they provide a new platform to access the primary infringing website. Countries including Singapore have passed dynamic injunctions in order to deal with the menace of mirror/alphanumeric websites.

Website blocking – An Answer to Copyright infringement? by Sanya Panjwani