Delhi High Court Ordered Blocking Of Websites Illegally Streaming Popular Reality Show ‘Bigg Boss’


The Delhi High Court in the case Viacom18 Media Private Limited v. BiggBos.Live and Ors observed and has granted an ex-parte injunction against illegal streaming of reality show ‘Bigg Boss’. However, the said order came to be passed in an application moved under Order 39 Rules 1&2 CPC by leading broadcaster-Viacom18.
The court in the case observed that Big Boss’ is being produced and broadcasted in India since 2008. It is based on a Dutch show ‘Big Brother’, rights of which are owned by M/s Endemol Shine IP BV. M/s Endemol is stated to have given rights of the show’s format to Viacom18, thus, which broadcasts the show on television channels Colors and Colors Kannada as well as its OTT platform ‘JioCinema’.
It being the case of Viacom18’s that in relation to the original broadcast, it owns cinematographic and broadcast reproduction rights.
In the present case, the said case has been filed against the 5 streaming and downloading websites working on Video-on-Demand mode, which are not only running previous seasons of ‘Bigg Boss’ unauthorizedly, but also advertising the upcoming 2 seasons of the show. Therefore, the domain names of these websites are registered in the name of ‘Bigg Boss’.
The court noted that the Viacom18’s OTT platform is also subscription-based and that the broadcaster possibly made a considerable investment towards obtaining rights for ‘Big Bos.’
The court in the case observed and has stated that if the illegal websites are permitted to unauthorizedly telecast ‘Bigg Boss’, the subscription base of Viacom18 would likely be jeopardized.
Further, it has also been stated by the said court that If such mushrooming of websites, which also use the name Bigg Boss, is permitted, it would boost piracy and unauthorised dissemination which causes heavy losses to the Plaintiff.
The court also restrained the Defendants from broadcasting, telecasting, streaming, retransmitting, and hosting any ‘Bigg Boss’ episode, the past or future. Thus, the Defendant-websites and their domain names were also directed to be suspended/blocked.
Adding to it, the court stated that the injunction would extend to any website that may come to the notice of Viacom18 as having the name ‘Bigg Boss’ or for illegally telecasting Viacom18’s programmes.
The counsel, Advocates, Mr. Sidharth Chopra, Mr. Yatinder Garg, Mr. Akshay Maloo, Ms. Srishti Dhoundiyal & Mr. Priyansh Kohli appeared for the Viacom18.