The U.S. Chamber of Commerce’s Global Innovation Policy Center (GIPC) and U.S.-India Business Council (USIBC) hosted “Creative India: Honoring the Legacy, Fostering the Future” to identify ways the U.S. and India can join forces to combat online piracy and protect cross-border innovation and creativity. The event brought together industry leaders and enforcement authorities from the U.S. and India to discuss new ideas to combat digital piracy, enforce intellectual property (IP) rights, and inspire international creativity.
Opening the event with the keynote address, Edgard Kagan, U.S. Consul General in Mumbai, said, “Next time you go see a film, stick around for the credits. Notice how many names are there that you don’t recognize. Intellectual property thieves are stealing from those people, even more than they are stealing from big media companies or famous movie stars. That’s why this is so important and that’s why the United States will continue to work closely with our friends in India to improve laws, regulations, and enforcement against content piracy in all its forms.”
The panel discussion featured U.S. and Indian industry experts and enforcement leaders including Brijesh Singh, Special Inspector General of Police, Maharashtra Cyber, Mumbai; Blaise Fernandes, President & CEO, Indian Music Industry; and Thomas George, Partner, Saikrishna & Associates.
Following the panel discussion, the U.S. Chamber of Commerce honored the MCDCU—South Asia’s first public-private initiative to combat digital piracy—with the 2019 Global IP Champion award in recognition of their efforts to protect the rights of content owners online. The Global IP Champion award recognizes a member of the IP community who has advanced reforms to foster and protect innovation and creativity in their communities and around the world. Launched in August 2017, the MCDCU has disrupted 235 websites hosting pirated content, resulting in savings to the tune of Rs. 120 crore or approximately $17 million for content creators.
Those of you who have been around from the 1960's through the 1990's will remember the vibrant live music scene in almost every starred hotel in India. Those were the days when you walked into a nightclub like 'Rendezvous' at The Taj Mahal hotel and 'Supper Club' at the Oberoi Sheraton in Mumbai to see curtains going up on a band that was the prime focus of these outlets. Every seat in these restaurants allowed an unobstructed view of the band that performed every night on resident contracts. Today all this has disappeared thanks to some ridiculously high entertainment taxes on live music. Today, non off these hotels have complete bands playing save for a few that feature small duos or solo singers. The Lodhi in New Delhi, recently listed among the world's best hotels, decided to step in and rewind to the good old days. They got Goa's premier jazz quartet 'Jazz Junction' to move to Delhi on a resident contract and the decision has paid off in terms of footfalls generated by the band. Jazz Junction featuring singer Daniella Rodrigues, pianist Tony Dias,
bassist Colin D'Cruz and drummer Angelo Colasco began playing at The Lodhi in June 2018. Four months into the contract the band generated a sizeable following, with quite a few high profile guests choosing to celebrate their special occasion at the Elan bar where the band performs. Against all odds the rewind option proved to be a huge success and hopefully other properties around the country takes the cue to trigger a whole new revival of live music.