Rohail Hyatt has responded to the recent copyright infringement controversy leveled by EMI studios against Coke Studio. EMI Studios, who have Noor Jehan’s ‘Sayyian’ under their label, had accused Coke Studio of violating copyright rules, forcing them to take down the BTS video of the Saiyyan from both YouTube and Facebook.
I spoke to Rohail Hyatt at length about the videos disappearing from Coke Studio's YouTube. EMI is using its legitimacy to initiate copyright strikes on YouTube but RH also has a valid point. In any case, this won't end here. Hopefully. Amen #cokestudio12https://t.co/IAbpwj8kqs
— Rafay Mahmood (@Rafay_Mahmood) October 28, 2019
In my view, @cokestudio must respect the ownership of intellectual property. As a commercial entity they should not indulge themselves to earn on the basis of reproducing the work without giving due share & credits.#CokeStudio12https://t.co/WE1yzMMROU
— Malik. (@NavazMalik) October 28, 2019
Coke Studio was set to produce a rendition of Saiyyan, featuring Rachel Viccaji and Shuja Haider. The videos of the BTS of Sayyian along with Roshe and Abrar-ul-Haq’s Billo was taken down hours after uploaded. The next day the BTS video of Saiyyan was only uploaded on Facebook and not on YouTube. As of today, the song has been taken off from Facebook and was neither aired.
Read more: Coke Studio 12: Atif Aslam’s ‘Wohe Khuda Hai’ Stole The Show
The producer of the show Rohail Hyatt confirmed the speculations that the song had not been released due to license issues. Hyatt asserted that they will have to obtain licensing from the EMI song before they can proceed with the song. Adding that, “They have provided some documentation to claim their license over Jadon Holi Jaye the song they feel is being used in Saiyaan.”
Hyatt expressed his disillusionment on the copyright claims since according to him “Shuja wanted to incorporate four words from his grandfather’s Punjabi song, Mae Ta Mar Jaaniya, as a tribute to old love songs.” Hyatt said he is not sure if the song falls in the category of copyright infringement. Adding that, however, he would have been happy to accept the claim through the proper channel. Adding that ‘With Saiyaan, I’m not sure if it falls under copyright infringement. Perhaps matters like this should be decided by a court of law.’
Hyatt informed that this is not the first time they have faced copyrights infringements claims. But this is surely the first time when the complainants have acted to take down the video.
He added that earlier various companies from around the world have come up with licensing issues but not an intimidating way. Adding that, ‘They will show you a proof of content-match and if we don’t contest it, then YouTube pays them their share directly. It’s a simple and respectful process that we have always followed.’
Read more: “Coke studio is a Pakistani indigenous cultural platform”: Sadaf Zarrar, IMC Manager Coke Studio
Earlier, Zeeshan Chaudhry, the COO of EMI Pakistan asserted that ‘We have claimed copyrights over Saiyyan which is an adaptation of our song and uses a sample from the original to add recall value to the new recording.’ He added that ‘Since the song was infringing our copyrights, we requested YouTube to strike down the BTS of the song which is possibly why they [Coke Studio] did not upload the actual song on YouTube, to begin with.’
As per the latest developments, both Coke Studio and EMI Studios are in conversation and will soon reach the agreement. It is anticipated that the matter will be resolved soon, BTS will be uploaded along with the song aired by Tuesday.