A Delhi High Court judge, Justice Prathiba Singh, has taken action in response to a plea filed by Humans of Bombay (HOB), a storytelling platform, against People of India (POI) for alleged copyright infringement of its content.
People of India also use a distinctive storytelling format and share it with the public.
According to the plea, People of India has allegedly violated copyright by using films from Humans of Bombay’s Instagram account and YouTube channel without permission. Additionally, it claimed that People of India has also copied HOB’s unique storytelling format without authorisation.
What is the case?
Advocate Abhishek Malhotra, who is representing Humans Of Bombay, alleged that the defendant has copied his client’s business model, reported Indian Express.
“…the similarities between the Infringing Content and the Plaintiff’s content not just constitutes infringement of copyright owned by the Plaintiff, but also, to passing off and unfair competition, as the Defendants have, evidently, knowingly and deliberately, published content that is identical or substantially similar to the popular Content comprised of Plaintiffs Works in an attempt to ride on goodwill that has been painstakingly built by the Plaintiff,” the plea stated.
Humans Of New York Creator Reacts
After learning about the copyright infringement lawsuit, Brandon Stanton, the creator of Humans of New York (HONY), posted a note on X (previously known as Twitter) to express his perspective on the situation. Brandon mentioned how Humans of Bombay (HOB) had apparently drawn inspiration from HONY without encountering legal challenges. Mr Stanton also mentioned his willingness to forgive the appropriation in the past but questioned the decision to file suits against other platforms. In his tweet, Mr Stanton stated, “I’ve stayed quiet on the appropriation of my work because I think @HumansOfBombay shares important stories, even if they’ve monetized far past anything I’d feel comfortable doing on HONY. But you can’t be suing people for what I’ve forgiven you for.”
I’ve stayed quiet on the appropriation of my work because I thinkshares important stories, even if they’ve monetized far past anything I’d feel comfortable doing on HONY. But you can’t be suing people for what I’ve forgiven you for.
— Brandon Stanton (@humansofny)
Humans Of Bombay’s Response
In response to Mr Stanton’s tweet, Humans of Bombay (HOB) issued two posts on X In their first post, they expressed their sentiments, stating, “Dear Brandon, As with the hundreds of Humans of chapters around the world, we love and understand the power of storytelling. It’s therefore shocking that a cryptic assault on our efforts to protect our intellectual property is made in this manner, especially without understanding the background of the case.”
They went on to add, “Perhaps, before jumping the gun on this matter, you ought to acquaint yourself with the information about the case and also about what HOB is trying to achieve. HOB is all for the power of storytelling. But it should be done honestly and ethically. We have sent you an email, requesting a conversation to provide further details. We believe in the honourable court of India and will request patience for the law take it’s own course after hearing ALL parts of the matter. Best, Humans of Bombay.”
— Humans Of Bombay (@HumansOfBombay)
In their second post, Humans of Bombay (HOB) shared images of the legal suit and accompanied them with the following statement: “We are grateful to HONY & Brandon for starting this storytelling movement. The suit is related to the IP in our posts & not about storytelling at all. We tried to address the issue amicably before approaching the Court, as we believe in protecting our team’s hard work. PFA.”
We are grateful to HONY & Brandon for starting this storytelling movement.
The suit is related to the IP in our posts & not about storytelling at all.
We tried to address the issue amicably before approaching the Court, as we believe in protecting our team’s hard work.
— Humans Of Bombay (@HumansOfBombay)