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The Doctrine Of Copyright Exhaustion In Software Under Indian Copyright Act: A Cursory Glance

Sayed Qudrat Hashimy, Research Scholar (Ph.D. in Law), Department of Studies in Law, University of Mysore


This study provides that copyright exhaustion serves an important social function of reducing the cost of information costs. Without it, buyers will be required to waste time and resources inquiring about their ability to resell copyrighted work. Because resale rights are generally regarded as desirable by society, the law should ordinarily grant them to buyers. There are costs associated with copyright exhaustion. The major drawbacks included a decline in the incentives to innovate as well as a regressive distributive effect as a result of copyright exhaustion’s restriction on some price discrimination methods. The breadth of copyright exhaustion should be determined by the balance of these benefits and costs. This study applies the doctrinal method and explores the preferred scope of copyright exhaustion. The study argues that the copyright owner should not be prevented from exercising control over the commercial importation of copyrighted work or distributions of digital work. However, copyright exhaustion should be restricted and the copyright should not be allowed to bypass it by including magic words in their standard-form agreements. The study will examine Article 14 of the Indian Copyright Act 1957 with Art. 30 of the copyright. The present study shall briefly examine the copyright law on the applicability of doctrine in Indian copyright jurisprudence.

Keywords: Exhaustion rule, Copyright infringement, copyright monopoly, software, and IP protection

Indian Journal of Law and Legal Research

Abbreviation: IJLLR

ISSN: 2582-8878


Accessibility: Open Access

License: Creative Commons 4.0

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​All research articles published in The Indian Journal of Law and Legal Research are fully open access. i.e. immediately freely available to read, download and share. Articles are published under the terms of a Creative Commons license which permits use, distribution and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


The opinions expressed in this publication are those of the authors. They do not purport to reflect the opinions or views of the IJLLR or its members. The designations employed in this publication and the presentation of material therein do not imply the expression of any opinion whatsoever on the part of the IJLLR.

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