It looks like stealing of music and songs in Pakistan is the new trend. An artist works hard to come up with a new track or song. One should know that it is unethical to steal someone’s music without taking the consent or giving credits to the original owner.
Recently, a case happened between singer Bilal Saeed and a famous clothing brand ‘So Kamal’. According to Bilal Saeed he was not aware of the song being picked by this famous brand until he heard the song playing in an ad for SoKamal’s luxury pret unstitched collection, ‘Mahtaab’. It featured actress Ayeza Khan in festive wear, the one-minute long video was picturized to the song’s lilting, romantic tune.
“It would have been quite easy for SoKamal’s team to reach out to me. The video, uploaded on YouTube, very clearly states that the song is owned by One Two Records, which is my record label,” says Bilal.
Bilal’s record label considered this a case of clear-cut copyright infringement and later had the video deleted from YouTube and as well as Facebook. Afterwards, SoKamal also removed the video from their social media pages, uploading it with a new background music.
View this post on Instagram
Eid Luxury Pret’20 As beautiful as the moon; Mahtaab. A beguiling sight of woven dreams reveals a glow of happiness that traverses in the form of a crafted piece to unveil a tale. The new collection is available in stores and online. Credits Photography: @maazabbasiphotographer MUA: @qasimliaqat Video: @moeedsayyam Jewelry: @shafaqhabibjewellery Set designer @ayraevents #Mahtaab #LuxuryPret #SoKamal #Eid
But Bilal, has sent the brand a legal notice. “This isn’t about money at all but about setting a precedent,” he says.
“This song was such a hit that immediately after its release, I got offers from an international record label that wanted to buy the rights to the song. I refused even though the offers were very lucrative. To have refused those offers and then, to have a brand from my own country simply pick up the song and use it, without even asking me, is a discredit to all the hard work that I had put in.”
“If only artists had done so in the past, our intellectual rights wouldn’t be infringed so callously. I just want to set an example that our hard work needs to be respected.”
SoKamal, in the context that they have already replaced the song with a different background score, stated in their official statement: “The allegations are frivolous in nature, absolutely baseless and contrary to facts. The artist and his record label’s act can best be termed as a concerted effort and attempt under a malicious plan to malign and blackmail the brand by defaming it for illegal, personal and financial gains. The company has resolved to take strict legal actions against the culprits for their libelous defamation and illegal acts.”
However, we believe that this needs to be stopped. There were many similar cases in the past related to copyright infringement. This is considered as illegal around the world and its high time that we as a nation understand this that an artist or any person who works day and night on their work don’t have to go through all this. It is sad to see a well-known brand like So Kamal doing such illegal thing. What kind of a trend are we setting in Pakistan? Can’t we just work a little harder and come up with our own idea? If not, then we should at least take consent of the right owner before moving forward with a step like this and ending up with legal notice.
Hopefully, SoKamal learns the lesson of stealing and apologizes to Bilal Saeed so that no other brand or person repeats the same mistake.