Culver Max Entertainment Private Limited (‘Culver Max’) doing business as Sony Pictures Networks India Pvt. Ltd., is an Indian media conglomerate owned by Sony Pictures Entertainment. Culver Max manages and operates 26 television channels, the streaming media platform SonyLIV, as well as the television studio “Studio NEXT” and film studio Sony Pictures International Productions. The network forayed into the Indian sports TV market in 2002 after acquiring the license rights for International Cricket Council (ICC) matches from 2003 to 2007, which were broadcast on SET and Sony MAX.
Culver Max acquired an exclusive copyright license from England and Wales Cricket Board Limited (‘ECB’) to broadcast/communicate the India-England International Cricket Series 2022 which is scheduled from 1st July, 2022 to 17th July, 2022 (‘Sporting Event’). Therefore, in order to telecast these matches to the public at large, the ECB has licensed the following rights to Culver Max:
  1. Exclusive television rights which are extended to live, delayed and repeat basis, digital rights with respect to mobile rights and internet rights as well as exclusive radio rights within the Licensed Territory;
  2. Exclusive Clip Rights, Audio Rights, Public Screening Rights as well as the right to make programmes relating to the matches and match Highlights which are usually telecasted after the match ends;
  3. Exclusive right to create contemporaneous textual commentary of the matches on its mobile platform and website;
  4. Right to sub-license the Media Rights to any third party.
Culver Max discovered that certain rogue websites, Uniform Resource Locators (URL) and Local Cable Operators (LCO) have been habitually defaulting and infringing Culver Max’s exclusive broadcasting rights of such matches in the past. The unauthorized use of the pirated copies and the unlicensed broadcasting rights has resulted in losses caused to Culver Max and also the Government as the revenue that is collected through taxes cannot be collected from these websites that broadcast pirated contents.
Resultantly, Culver Max filed a suit in the Delhi High Court seeking a permanent injunction in order to restrain these rogue websites, URLs and LCOs from infringing the rights in the India-England Cricket Series 2022 which are recently being held.
After taking into consideration all the aspects and the weighing all the losses bore by Culver Max and the Government in the past, the Court granted an injunction in favor of Culver Max restraining all rogue websites from hosting, streamlining, reproducing and distributing any pirated and unlicensed version of the matches telecasted. Some rogue websites are directed to block access to their respective websites. The injunction will also cover all the mirror/redirect or any other equivalent websites.
The Court additionally gave Culver Max, the liberty and permission to file an application against any other rogue website which they may discover at a latter point in time.


Keep yourself acquainted with the latest in IP news. Subscribe to our free newsletter to get regular updates.

Copyright © 2023 R. K. Dewan & Co.