Delhi High Court orders blocking of 18 Websites used to download audio/video from YouTube
The Delhi High Court directed blocking of 18 rogue websites that were being used to download audio and video content from platforms like YouTube.
Single judge Justice C Hari Shankar while hearing in the matter of Sony Music Entertainment India Private Limited and others vs. YT1S.com, YT1S.PRO, YT1S.DE and others ordered the Central government to issue a notification calling upon the various Internet Service Providers (in short ISPs) to block access to the websites in India.
The High Court passed an ex-parte interim order while hearing a suit filed by multi-national music companies Sony Music, Warner Music and Universal music stating that these websites provide the service through which copyrighted content on various platforms, primarily YouTube, could be downloaded in MP3 or MP4 format by copying the YouTube link in the space provided in the website.
The plaintiffs submitted that this phenomenon was called as "stream ripping" and because the details of the real administrators of the websites are concealed, it would be impossible for the plaintiffs to pursue the websites by separate proceedings regarding individual copyrighted content.
The Court found prima facie case in the favor of plaintiffs justifying interlocutory injunctive relief, to prevent further copyright infringement and proliferation of such activities over the internet.
The Court issued directions that, "defendants 1 to 18 (websites), and also any mirror/redirect/alphanumeric websites enumerating therefrom, are restrained from hosting, reproducing, distributing, facilitating or making available to the public, works in which the plaintiffs hold copyright, or facilitating the downloading and dissemination of such works in any manner whatsoever."
Furthermore, the Court stated that in the event that any mirror/ redirect/ alphanumeric of the rogue websites come into existence, the plaintiffs shall be entitled to file an affidavit before the joint registrar who, on being satisfied, may issue directions to the ISPs to disable them.
The court also issued summons on the suit and listed the case before the Joint Registrar on February 22 2023.
Advocates Harsh Kaushik, Rahul Dhote, Anushree Rauta, SS Ahluwalia, Harsh Prakash, Devangiv Rai, Narayani P Chowdhary and Mohit Bangwal appeared for the plaintiff