Asked not to Dial : Just Dial Accuses Askme of Data Theft

Hot off the  press is an ex parte injunction granted by the Delhi High Court to Just Dial, the multipurpose local search engine giant, which alleged that Infomedia 18 Limited, a group company of TV 18, had substantially copied its database and was displaying the same on its website askme.in . Just Dial alleged a case of copyright infringement with respect to the valuable database which has been a result of the extensive research carried out for 14 years.

Just Dial argued that its database was a “literary work as defined under the Copyright Act of 1957” and thus askme.in could not replicate it. The presence of “identical spelling mistakes in the two databases” strongly suggests the event of infringement. Officials of Just Dial suggest that the Court recognizing the significance and seriousness of the breach allowed an ex parte injunction and thereby restrained Infomedia 18 from running the website askme.in till the next date of hearing. Justice Indermeet Kaur noted that in case the order was not passed, Just Dial would face “irreparable loss.”In addition to this, the Court has also appointed two officials, in Delhi and Mumbai , respectively, to take in to custody the computer hardware and any other storage media which has been used by askme.in to store any data developed by Just Dial. The matter has been next listed on March 25,2010.

Data theft seems to be the latest form of intellectual property infringement as very recently, Travelocity too accused of Cleartrip of data theft.

For more on injunctions, please see here .

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